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Biographical entry Anstey, Francis (Frank) George (1865 - 1940)

18 August 1865
London, England
31 October 1940
Trade Union - Official, Politician - State - Vic (MLA or MLC) and Politician - Federal - MHR


Born Francis George Anstey in 1865, by the age of eleven, Frank had stowed aboard a full-rigged passenger vessel bound for Australia. Once in Sydney he signed on as a 'bosuns' boy' in a ship working the Pacific islands trade. Working as a seaman for ten years, Anstey was well qualified to join the Seamen's Union when he did in 1883. Eventually settling in Melbourne with his new bride, Frank initially worked as a cleaner at the Working Men's College whilst developing into a leading agitator for the labor cause. Anstey helped found the Tramway Employees' Association and was its president for a number of years. By 1902 Anstey had succeeded in being elected as a member of the Legislative Assembly. In 1910 he jumped to the federal political arena, succesfully being elected to a position in the House of Representatives. Remaining in politics until 1934, Anstey eventually died of cancer in Melbourne in October 1940.

Archival resources

National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection

  • Lloyd Ross - Papers, 1854-1986, 1854 - 1986, MS 3939; National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection. Details

State Library of Victoria, Australian Manuscripts Collection

  • Samuel Merrifield - Papers, ca. 1858-ca. 1977, c. 1858 - c. 1977, MS 13045; State Library of Victoria, Australian Manuscripts Collection. Details

Published resources

Book Sections

  • Turner, Ian, 'Anstey, Frances George', in Australian Dictionary of Biography, vol. 7, Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, 1981, pp. 79-81. Details

See also

Digital resources

c. 1920


Ross G. Elford