'Father of Federation' and 'Grand Old Man' of Australian politics

In 1839, a 24-year-old Parkes emigrated as an assisted migrant from Warwickshire to New South Wales. The son of an English tenant farmer, Parkes had writing and speaking skills that belied his lack of formal education. He became a journalist and ivory trader, took a leading part in the democratisation of the constitution, and was a member of the Colonial Parliament for a half-century. Parkes served five times as Prime Minister, and was recognised as the 'Grand Old Man' of Australian politics in the late 1880s. Members of Parliament in Parkes's time did not receive a salary, and though he himself 'suffered great financial vicissitudes,' his integrity was 'unquestioned.' Parkes took part in many social reforms, and presided over the establishment of 'an efficient system of public education.'

Parkes lived in Faulconbridge from 1876 to 1887, and is buried in a Blue Mountains cemetery.

Oh, and he had rather cavernous nostrils.

quoted information from Dr. Allen Martin, Biographer of Sir Parkes

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