John Christian Watson

Watson, John Christian


Born Apr. 9, 1867, in Valparaiso, Chile; died Nov. 18, 1941, in Sydney. Australian state figure.

Watson was trained as a compositor. In the 1880’s he emigrated to Australia, where he became involved in the trade union and labor movement. From 1901 to 1907 he was leader of the Labour Party. From April to August 1904 he was prime minister of the first Labour government in the history of the world. In 1910, Watson retired from political life.

References in periodicals archive ?
The essential dilemma of Fisher's reputation as leader of the Australian Labor Party is that in comparison to the policy activism and political energy of his predecessor, John Christian Watson, and that of Fisher's own Attorney-General and successor, Billy Hughes, Fisher emerges as a static figure.
Though not the first biography of John Christian Watson, as claimed in the publisher's blurb--Bede Nairn contributed an excellent article in volume 12 (1990) of the Australian Dictionary of Biography--this short life of Watson does much to fill in his Chilean and New Zealand background.