A.L.P. Centenary History

Ross McMullin

Your editor has asked me to contribute some preliminary thoughts about the centenary history of the A.L.P., which I have been appointed to write. . The aim of the book is to cover the history of the party in all states and federally, from its origins right up to the present. The book is scheduled for publication during the A.L.P.’s centenary year, 1991. The history of the A.L.P. is a rich, dense story with such a multitude of sources – I doubt whether there is any other Australian institution with the range of historical sources that relate to the A.L.P. The main problem, it seems to me at this very early stage, concerns the compression necessary to tell the story in one readable, comprehensive volume.

Nevertheless, I would like to encourage readers of the Hummer to send me further material. This may comprise records or printed material. In addition, I would like to hear from A.L.P. branch members/supporters/voters about what the A.L.P. has meant to them, and what their own impressions have been of particular events in the history. By making some suggestions, I don’t at all wish to restrict impressions only to these themes:

  • For those whose memories extend back to the late 1940s, what was your opinion of Chifley taking on the banks?
  • Do you have any personal reminiscences illustrating the effects/bitterness of the 1950s split?
  • What did you think of the performance of previous State Labor governments? (Between 1941 and 1965 N.S.W. had Labor governments under McKell, McGirr, Cahill, Heffron and Renshaw: I would be grateful for information about. any of these A.L.P. Premiers as well as assessments of their governments.)
  • Much has been written about the Dismissal of 11/11/75 – have you any information about it that has not been covered before?
  • What do you see as the achievements of the A.L.P.?
  • What is your opinion of Labor in government today?

These are meant as suggestions only. If you would like to contact me about these and/or other issues, events and A.L.P. identities, I would be very pleased to hear from you. My address is 19 O’Grady Street, Clifton Hill 3068, and my phone number is (03) 481 6409.