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McLACHLAN, the Hon. Alexander JohnBiography for McLACHLAN, the Hon. Alexander John

Senator for (SA)

United Australia Party

Parliamentary Service

Chosen by the Parliament of South Australia on 24.2.1926 under section 15 of the Constitution to represent that State in the Senate, vice B Benny (resigned). Elected to the Senate for South Australia 1925. Re-elected 1931 and 1937. Defeated at general elections 1943.

Acting Ministries

Acting Attorney-General from 1926 to 1927.

Acting Attorney-General from March to July 1932.

Acting Attorney-General from April to July 1934.

Acting Attorney-General, 1938.

Ministerial Appointments

Honorary Minister from 29.8.1926 to 22.10.1929.

Cabinet Minister from 29.8.1926 to 22.10.1929.

Vice-President of the Executive Council from 6.1.1932 to 12.10.1934.

Cabinet Minister from 6.1.1932 to 7.11.1938.

Minister for Development and Scientific and Industrial Research from 6.1.1932 to 29.11.1937.

Postmaster-General from 12.10.1934 to 7.11.1938.

Committee Service

Senate Standing: House from 1.7.1926 to 1.1.1927; House from 10.12.1929 to 1.1.1931; Standing Orders from 18.2.1932 to 1.1.1944; Regulations and Ordinances from 30.5.1940 to 1.1.1940.

Joint Standing: War Expenditure from 3.7.1941 to 10.2.1944 (Chair from 3.7.1941).

Conferences Delegations and Visits

Leader, Australian Delegation to the League of Nations, 1928

Plenipotentiary for Australia for the signing of the Kellogg Pact, 1928

Parliamentary Party Positions

Leader of the Government in the Senate from 1937 to 1938.

Party Positions

Founding member and first vice-president, Liberal Union

Founding member and council life member, Liberal Federation

President, Liberal Union from 1913

Other Positions

Life member, Liberal Federation council

Chairman of directors of the Liberal Club Ltd

One of the founders, Liberal Union

First vice-president, Liberal Union

Chief, Caledonian Society from 1899 to 1902

Chairman, South Australian Football League from 1920 to 1925

Founding member, Liberal Federation from 1923


Born 2.11.1872, Narracoorte, Australia

Died 28.5.1956, East Melbourne


Qualifications and Occupations before entering Federal Parliament

Articled Clerk


Partner, various legal firms

Directorships in several industrial and insurance companies

Chairman of the directors, Liberal Club Ltd

Chairman, Commonwealth Life (Amalgamated) Assurances Ltd from 1929

Military Service

Commanding officer of the South Australian Scottish Infantry, formed at the time of the Boer War