Edward Russell (Australian politician)

The Honourable
Edward Russell
Senator for Victoria
In office
1 July 1907  18 July 1925
Succeeded by William Plain
Personal details
Born (1878-08-10)10 August 1878
Warrnambool, Victoria
Died 18 July 1925(1925-07-18) (aged 46)
Sunbury, Victoria
Nationality Australian
Political party Labor (190717)
Nationalist (191725)
Occupation Unionist

Edward John Russell (10 August 1878 – 18 July 1925) was an Australian politician.

Russell was born in Warrnambool, Victoria and educated at Newport State School and St Mary's Catholic School, Williamstown. In 1899 he became involved with the labour movement and soon became a Printers' Union delegate to the Melbourne Trades Hall Council and a member of the Victorian Socialist Party (VSP).[1]

Political career

In 1904 Russell ran unsuccessfully for the Victorian Legislative Assembly seat of Prahran for the Australian Labor Party. Despite being unemployed, he campaigned successfully in a suit provided by the VSP, for election as a senator at the 1906 election. He married Margaret May Evans in April 1907. From September 1913 he was an assistant minister in the Fisher and Hughes governments. On 27 October 1916, he resigned from the ministry along with William Higgs and William Webster in opposition to Hughes handling of conscription. Nevertheless, on 14 November 1916, he joined Hughes' National Labor Party government and was reappointed to the ministry as assistant minister. From March 1918 to December 1921, he was Vice-President of the Executive Council. He was also chairman of various boards dealing with agricultural commodities and vice-president of the Board of Trade and for much of 1919 he was acting Minister for Defence. He was apparently not able to cope with this workload and he was dropped from the ministry in December 1921. Although he was still a senator, he did not participate in parliament after 1922 and died in the Sunbury Hospital for the Insane, survived by his wife, two sons and two daughters.[1]


  1. 1 2 Browne, Geoff (1988). "Russell, Edward John (1878 - 1925)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
Political offices
Preceded by
Littleton Groom
Vice-President of the Executive Council
1918 – 1921
Succeeded by
John Earle
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