William Morris Hughes
Hughes, William Morris
Born Sept. 25, 1864, in London; died Oct. 28, 1952, in Sydney. Australian statesman.
Hughes emigrated to Australia in 1884. He took part in the labor movement and was elected to the House of Representatives of the newly established Australian parliament in 1901. Hughes belonged to the first Labor government in 1904 and to a number of subsequent ones (1908–09, 1910–13, 1914–17). He was prime minister from 1915 to 1923 and advocated active Australian involvement in World War I.
Hughes’ policies, particularly his unsuccessful attempt to introduce military conscription, led to a split in the Labor Party; the party’s right wing, which he headed, joined the liberals in 1917 to form the Nationalist Party. From 1917, Hughes headed the government as leader of the Nationalist Party. From 1934 to 1941 he held a series of ministerial posts.