PRIME MINISTERS

Ben Chifley
Australia Crest

Prime Minister of Australia from 1945 - 1949, born in Bathurst, NSW on 22nd September, 1885.

From being a railway engine driver he became head of the Railworkers Union then entered politics, becoming treasurer to Curtin before becoming Prime Minister.

Bad treatment from his railway bosses after a strike in 1917 turned him to politics, afterwards saying "All that harsh and oppressive treatment did as far as I was concerned was to transform me from an ordinary engine driver to the Prime Minister of this country."

Chifley pushed hard in the name of public health and as Prime Minister, his government nationalised Qantas.

In 1949 he established A.S.I.O.

Ben Chifley died in 1951 whilst in office as Opposition Leader.

His old home is still at Busby Street, Bathurst. Check it out, it still has the Kooka stove and lino on the kitchen floor.


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