William Munnings Arnold

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The Honourable
William Arnold
Secretary for Public Works
In office
9 March 1860 – 15 October 1863
Preceded by Geoffrey Eagar
Succeeded by Arthur Holroyd
Secretary for Public Works
In office
3 February 1865 – 19 October 1865
Preceded by Arthur Holroyd
Succeeded by Thomas Smart
Secretary for Lands
In office
20 October 1865 – 31 October 1865
Preceded by John Robertson
Succeeded by John Robertson
Speaker of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly
In office
1 November 1865 – 1 March 1875
Preceded by John Hay
Succeeded by George Allen
Personal details
Born (1819-10-26)26 October 1819
Ellough, Suffolk, England
Died 1 March 1875(1875-03-01) (aged 55)
Paterson, New South Wales

The Hon. William Munning Arnold (10 October 1819 – 1 March 1875) was an Australian politician and a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly from 1856 until his death. He held numerous ministerial positions between 1860 and 1865 including Secretary for Public Works and Secretary for Lands. He was the Speaker between 1865 and 1875.

Early life[edit]

Arnold was born in the village of Ellough in Suffolk, England and was the son of an Anglican clergyman. He was educated at home and then at private schools in Lowestoft and High Wycombe. Arnold migrated to Australia in 1839 and made a substantial fortune from investments in the pastoral industry and gold trading. He invested in a number of large properties on the Paterson River in which he drowned during major flooding in 1875.

State Parliament[edit]

Arnold was elected at the 1856 election to the first parliament of New South Wales after the granting of responsible government. With Richard Jones and Samuel Gordon, he was elected to the three member seat of Durham. He retained this seat until 1859 and then represented the seat of Paterson until his death. He was noted for his radically democratic views on electoral reform including universal manhood suffrage and the distribution of electorates based on population.

Government[edit]

Arnold was appointed to the position of Secretary of Public Works in the first ministry of John Robertson and the third and fourth ministries of Charles Cowper. He also served briefly as Secretary for Lands in Cowper's fourth government

Speakership[edit]

Arnold served as the Assembly's fourth Speaker between 1865 and 1875. He was noted for his objectivity and fairness as speaker and his decisions were rarely questioned by either the government or opposition.

References[edit]

Parliament of New South Wales
Preceded by
first election
Member for Durham
1856 – 1859
Served alongside: Jones, Gordon
Succeeded by
seat abolished
Preceded by
new electorate
Member for Paterson
1859 – 1875
Succeeded by
Herbert Brown
Political offices
Preceded by
Geoffrey Eagar
Secretary for Public Works
1860 – 1863
Succeeded by
Arthur Holroyd
Preceded by
Arthur Holroyd
Secretary for Public Works
1865
Succeeded by
Thomas Smart
Preceded by
John Robertson
Secretary for Lands
1865
Succeeded by
John Robertson
Preceded by
John Hay
Speaker of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly
1865 – 1875
Succeeded by
George Allen