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Walter Carncross

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Sir Walter Carncross
Sir Walter Carncross.jpg
Carncross in 1922
15th Speaker of the Legislative Council
In office
1 November 1918 – 18 July 1939
Preceded byCharles Johnston
Succeeded byMark Fagan
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for Taieri
In office
5 December 1890 – 25 November 1902
Preceded byJames Fulton
Succeeded byDonald Reid
Personal details
Born(1855-04-23)23 April 1855
Bendigo, Victoria
Died30 June 1940(1940-06-30) (aged 88)
Eltham, Taranaki
Political partyLiberal

Sir Walter Charles Frederick Carncross (23 April 1855 – 30 June 1940) was a New Zealand politician of the Liberal Party.


Early life

Carncross was born in Bendigo, Victoria, in 1855 (or 1853[1]). He came to Dunedin with his parents when he was seven years old. Carncross married Mary, a daughter of R. Johnston in 1883.[2] He was to become a newspaper proprietor by trade, owning both the Taieri Advocate & Eltham Argus.[3]

Political career

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate Party
1890–1893 11th Taieri Liberal
1893–1896 12th Taieri Liberal
1896–1899 13th Taieri Liberal
1899–1902 14th Taieri Liberal

He represented the Taieri electorate from 1890 to 1902, when he retired.[4]

He was in favour of perpetual leasing of land and opposed the sale of the railways.[5] He was opposed to women's suffrage and in 1891 deliberately moved an amendment that was intended to make the bill fail in the Legislative Council. His amendment was for women to become eligible to be voted into the House of Representatives. This infuriated the suffragette Catherine Fulton, who organised a protest at the 1893 election.[6] He served as the Liberal Party's Senior Whip in 1902, his last year in the lower house[7]

He was appointed to the Legislative Council on 18 March 1903 by the Liberal Government, and at the expiry of his seven-year terms, he was reappointed five times; on 18 March 1910, on 17 March 1917 & 17 March 1924 by the Reform Government; 17 March 1931 by the United Government; and 16 March 1938 by the First Labour Government. His district was Taranaki, and then Eltham from 1917.

He served on the Council until his death.[8] He was elected Chairman of Committees on 6 July 1910 and served in this role until 1 November 1918,[9] when he became Speaker, succeeding the deceased Charles Johnston. He remained Speaker until 18 July 1939; his 21-year service as speaker was an Empire record. He was succeeded by Labour's Mark Fagan during the time of the First Labour Government.[10]

Carncross was appointed a Knight Bachelor in the 1922 King's Birthday Honours.[10][11] In 1935, he was awarded the King George V Silver Jubilee Medal.[12]


Carncross died on 30 June 1940 [8] at his home in Eltham, Taranaki. He was survived by Lady Carncross, a son and a daughter.[13]


  1. ^ "New Member". Evening Star. 6 December 1890 – via Papers Past.
  2. ^ Cyclopedia Company Limited (1908). "Present Members Of The Legislative Council". The Cyclopedia of New Zealand : Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts. Christchurch: The Cyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 30 July 2012.
  3. ^ Hamer 1988, p. 362.
  4. ^ Wilson 1985, p. 188.
  5. ^ "Members's Views". Evening Star. 6 December 1890 – via Papers Past.
  6. ^ Entwisle, Rosemary. "Fulton, Catherine Henrietta Elliot - Biography". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
  7. ^ Wilson 1985, pp. 279–80.
  8. ^ a b Wilson 1985, p. 151.
  9. ^ Wilson 1985, p. 169.
  10. ^ a b Wilson 1985, p. 168.
  11. ^ "No. 32716". The London Gazette (Supplement). 3 June 1922. p. 4320.
  12. ^ "Official jubilee medals". The Evening Post. 6 May 1935. p. 4. Retrieved 2 July 2013.
  13. ^ *"Obituary (page 11)". Auckland Star (Papers Past). 1 July 1940.


New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Taieri
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Chairman of Committees of the Legislative Council
Succeeded by
Preceded by Speaker of the New Zealand Legislative Council
Succeeded by
Party political offices
Preceded by Senior Whip of the Liberal Party
Succeeded by
This page was last edited on 2 January 2022, at 02:51
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