|Minister for Agriculture|
16 May 1932 – 1 April 1938
|Preceded by||Bill Dunn|
|Succeeded by||Albert Reid|
|Minister for Forests|
16 May 1932 – 17 June 1932
|Preceded by||Bill Dunn|
|Succeeded by||Roy Vincent|
22 August 1883|
Ardrossan, Ayrshire, Scotland
|Died||27 August 1961
Cootamundra, New South Wales, Australia
|Resting place||Cootamundra cemetery|
|Political party||Progressive (1920 – 1927
Country Party (1927 – 1957)
|Spouse(s)||Joan Helen Trethgarten|
|Children||2 daughters and 1 son|
|Service/branch||Australian Imperial Forces|
|Years of service||1916 – 1919|
Main was honourably discharged as a Private, despite attaining the rank of Sergeant during service.
|Battles/wars||World War I|
British War Medal
Hugh Main (22 August 1883 – 27 August 1961) was an Australian politician. He was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly from 1920 until 1938, representing the electorates of Cootamundra (1920–1927) and Temora (1927–1938). Initially elected as a Progressive, he was a member of the party's rural "True Blues" faction that by 1927 had evolved into the Country Party.
Early years and military career
Main was born on the west coast of Scotland, some sources state at Ardrossan, others at Saltcoats, and was educated at Tonbridge School in England and St Peter's College and Roseworthy Agricultural College in South Australia. He worked as an orchardist at Clare for a time, before establishing a wheat and wool property at Bethungra in New South Wales around 1906. He was also a successful breeder of thoroughbred racehorses. Main enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in 1916, and saw active service in France during World War I, rising to the rank of sergeant. He returned to his Bethungra farm in 1919 with a highly regarded service record.
Main entered politics for the first time at the 1920 state election, when he was endorsed as a Progressive for multi-member Cootamundra. He campaigned hard on rural issues, distanced himself from city interests and won in one of the largest upsets in New South Wales history when he defeated the incumbent Premier, Nationalist William Holman, for the third and final seat. As a Progressive MLA, he was one of the "True Blues" who broke with the party leadership in 1921 to oppose a coalition with the Nationalists for the 1922 election. He was re-elected in 1922 and 1925 largely under the banner of the rural faction, and joined the other "True Blues" in joining the nascent Country Party in 1927. After the abolition of the multi-member system, Main contested and won the new electorate of Temora.
The conservatives in New South Wales won a landslide victory in 1932 under Nationalist leader Bertram Stevens, and Main was one of several Country Party MLAs invited to hold portfolios in a new coalition ministry. He became Minister for Agriculture in 1932; he also held the position of Minister for Forests for a brief period. In his new role, he aggressively pursued rural interests, including the development of improved farming infrastructure, the protection of small farmers, and reviewing legislation relevant to farming interests. He held the position until 1938, when he retired from both the ministry and from parliament. He was succeeded in Temora by Doug Dickson, a future deputy leader of the Country Party.
Life after politics
Main retired to his farm after leaving politics, but continued to be involved in the Country Party, and served on its executive council from 1956 to 1957. He died at Cootamundra in 1961 and was buried at Cootamundra cemetery.
- "Hugh Main – Discovering Anzacs". National Archives of Australia. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
- Davey, Paul (2006). The Nationals: The Progressive, Country, and National Party in New South Wales. Federation Press. p. 29. ISBN 1-86287-526-X.
- "The Hon. Hugh Main". Former Members. Parliament of New South Wales. 2009. Retrieved 12 July 2010.
- "Main, Hugh (1883 - 1961)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Melbourne University Press. 1986. Retrieved 12 July 2010.
- Davey, Paul (2006). p. 14. Missing or empty
- Davey, Paul (2006). p. 114. Missing or empty
- Green, Antony (2007). "New South Wales Election Results 1856-2007". Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 12 July 2010.
|Parliament of New South Wales|
|Member for Cootamundra
1920 – 1927
Loughlin, G. McGirr, J. McGirr, Hoad
|Member for Temora
1927 – 1938