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Richard Rowland (Dick) Bow (1868–1941)

from Worker

This entry is from Obituaries Australia

As a result of an accident at the Gannon Hill sale yards on Wednesday afternoon, when he was crushed between a loading bank and a moving train, another old Labor stalwart in the person of 'Dick' Bow was so critically injured that later in the evening he died in the Brisbane Hospital, to which institution he had been removed.

Richard Roland Bow had reached the allotted span, of three score and ten, but he was remarkably active for his years, and it may well and truly be said that he grew up with the Labor Movement in Queensland because, as far back as 1890, he was a prominent figure in the great industrial struggles of the West, when the squatters unsuccessfully sought to impose on the pastoral industry against the unionism of the workers the pernicious principle of 'Freedom of Contract.'

'Dick' Bow, who was a fine horseman, and in his youth a splendid athlete, was one of the members of the famous strike camp at Barcaldine in 1891, when the shearers were confronted with the military and their gatling guns, and many an anxious moment did he and his mates cause 'the gallant young volunteers' who were sent up from the cities' offices with the regular forces to quell the rebellious strikers in the Far West.

'Dick' Bow, with Harry Kelly and others, were sent out by the Strike Committee at Barcaldine to officially call the strike off in the various camps, and by a strange coincidence, it is just 50 years ago this week since they undertook this important duty for the organisation in those days.

Following the '91 strike and the further turmoil of '94, in which 'Dick' Bow also took a prominent part, he became associated with the butchering trade at Longreach, and when the first secretary of the A.W.U. in that centre (the late W. Kewley) passed out, 'Dick' was elected to the position, a post he held with distinction until the death of another old mate, John Payne, M.L.A., in 1928, created a vacancy in the Queensland Legislative Assembly.

Taking his place as Parliamentary representative for the Mitchell, 'Dick' Bow held the seat until, with several others, it was wiped out in the 're-distribution' foisted on the country by the Moore Government in 1932.

After retiring from Parliament 'Dick' Bow obtained a position, with the Department of Agriculture and Stock at the Brisbane Abattoir, where he remained an employee of the Queensland Meat Industry Board until his death. He was on duty supervising stock on Wednesday when he met with the accident that caused his death.

The deceased, who was a very popular and likeable man, left widow and a married daughter (Mrs. J. Stenhouse), of Longreach. His funeral, which took place on Friday at the South Brisbane Cemetery, was largely attended, and amongst the mourners were a number of his old Parliamentary colleagues as well as representatives of the Australian Workers' Union and of many other sections of the Labor Movement.

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Citation details

'Bow, Richard Rowland (Dick) (1868–1941)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 23 July 2024.

© Copyright Labour Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]


3 August, 1868
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


11 June, 1941 (aged 72)
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Cause of Death

workplace accident

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