ID 0176

State Government of Victoria beginning 12 February 1901 - period in office of Premier Peacock, Alexander James ending on 10 June 1902

Period in office of premier (see Glossary entry for 'period in office' and related terms)

Peacock, Alexander James
Date of beginning of period in office
12 February 1901
Date of end of period in office
10 June 1902 
Reason for end of preceding period in office
Change of party leader 
Reason for end of this government
Defeat in parliament
Number of days in office

Parliamentary support during period

Party affiliation of premier at start of period
If coalition government
Coalition partner 1
Coalition partner 2
Coalition partner 3
Coalition partner 4
Party support in parliament at beginning of period
If change in parliamentary support during period
If further change during period

Number of ministers at beginning of period (this may vary during the period)

Total number of ministers
Number from party of premier
Number from coalition party 1
Number from coalition party 2
Number from upper house
Number who are women

Assembly elections contested as premier or after which became premier (see Glossary entry for 'after election')

* to view table drag left or right.
Election Premier at election Premier's party Premier after election Premier's party
VIC 26 June 1924Alexander James PeacockNational Party (Nationalists)Alexander James PeacockNational Party (Nationalists)
VIC 15 November 1917Alexander James PeacockLiberal PartyJohn BowserNational Party (Nationalists)
VIC 26 November 1914Alexander James PeacockLiberal PartyAlexander James PeacockLiberal Party

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Change of party leader (Turner): Peacock's first period in office; 'A change in the leadership occurred when Turner accepted the post of Treasurer in the [first] Commonwealth cabinet, and was followed as Premier and Treasurer by Peacock. The succession of ministries in this case was purely formal, the Lieutenant-Governor requesting most of the ministers to retain the offices they had held under Turner.' Hughes and Graham, p.109 (see 'Sources', below).

Defeat in parliament (Peacock): 'Faced with a demand for a reduction of cabinet posts, a majority of the ministers agreed in December 1901 that they should resign their portfolios to facilitate a reconstruction and signed a document to that effect. The document was held by McCulloch and later by Wynne, who posted it to Peacock on 30 April 1902. However, Peacock did not accept the resignations. The Opposition brought forward a motion censuring the ministers for "signing their resignations and continuing thereafter to administer their departments". When this was passed [45 votes to 42] on 3 June, the Peacock Government resigned ....' Hughes and Graham, 109 (see 'Sources', below); Victoria Parliamentary Debates, First Session 1902, vol. 100, 3 June 1902, pp 35-60.

Wright provides context for the popular demands for constitutional reform and the reduction in size of the Victorian parliament and government that contributed to Peacock's defeat (Wright, pp 118-119, see 'Sources', below).

References: For a study of Peacock's periods in office, see John Chesterman, 'Alexander Peacock: The Laughing Pragmatist', in Strangio and Costar (editors), ch. 11, (see 'Sources', below), and for a review of Victorian parliamentary politics from 1901 to 1920, see, Wright, ch. 7 (in 'Sources', below). A survey of Peacock's career can be found in Alan Gregory, 'Peacock, Sir Alexander James (1861–1933)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 11, (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1988), on line here [accessed 31 March 2014].


Colin Hughes and B D Graham (editors), A Handbook of Australian Government and Politics 1890-1964, (Canberra: Australian National University Press, 1968, SBN 708102700); Parliament of Victoria, One Hundred Years of Responsible Government 1856-1956, (Melbourne: Government Printer, 1957, Parliamentary Paper No. 40 of 1956-58); Paul Strangio and Brian Costar (editors), The Victorian Premiers 1856-2006, (Sydney: Federation Press, 2006, ISBN 9781862876019); Raymond Wright, A People's Counsel: A History of the Parliament of Victoria 1856-1990, (Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1992, ISBN 0195533593). Victoria Hansard (Record of Parliamentary Debates) on line here .

In consulting these sources, note the difference between ministries and periods in office.