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Edmund Barton
, c. 1903

by Crown Studios

gelatin silver photograph (sheet: 30.3 cm x 22.9 cm, mount: 50.5 x 40.4)

The Rt. Hon Sir Edmund Barton GCMG KC PC (1849–1920), Australia’s first Prime Minister, was born and educated in Sydney. Educated in law, he was admitted to the Bar in late 1871. Around this time, he umpired a cricket match between New South Wales and England that erupted into a riot he had to quell. Barton entered the NSW Parliament in 1879, and became Speaker at the early age of 34. For several years in the early 1890s he was Attorney-General. However, for the remainder of that decade his focus was Federation, for which he was the leading campaigner, presenting and explaining the constitution bill to the British Parliament in 1900. In 1901 he became Australia’s first Prime Minister. He resigned in 1903, to spend the rest of his life as a judge of the High Court.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Purchased 2011
Accession number: 2011.75