The North Queensland Guardian

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The North Queensland Guardian
The North Queensland Guardian 1943-05-14 issue.jpg
14 May 1943 issue of The North Queensland Guardian
Publisher Queensland State Committee, Communist Party of Australia
Editor-in-chief Fred Paterson
Founded 1 May 1937 (1937-05-01)
Political alignment Communist
Language English language
Ceased publication 5 November 1943 (1943-11-05)
Headquarters Townsville
Circulation 5,100 (May 1937)

The North Queensland Guardian was a newspaper published from Townsville, in the Australian state of Queensland between 1937 and 1943.[1] The newspaper was published by the Queensland State Committee of the Communist Party of Australia.[1] Fred Paterson was the chairman of the editorial board of the newspaper.[1]


The first issue was published on May Day 1937.[1][2] The first editorial of the newspaper stated that The North Queensland Guardian would launch "...a crusade against poverty; a crusade against war; a crusade against governmental tyranny and despotism".[2]


The North Queensland Guardian was the first communist newspaper in the state with a degree of success. Under Paterson's editorship the hammer and sickle was removed from the front page of the newspaper.[3] Unlike other Communist Party of Australia organs, The North Queensland Guardian carried commercial advertisements.[4] It carried articles on sports and social events, dedicating significant attention to women's activities.[3] By May 1937 the newspaper reached a circulation of 5,100 copies.[2][5] It was sold at two pence per issue.[3]

Murri issue[edit]

In 1938 the newspaper condemned the moves to displace the Murri people and confiscate their wages, and called on its sympathizers to side with the Aborigines Progressive Association.[6]


With the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, the Australian communist press was confronted with increasing censorship issues. On 27 May 1940 the newspaper was banned.[7] The newspaper was published illegally between June 1940 and 8 January 1943. During this time its size was reduced.[1]

Later period[edit]

The last issue of The North Queensland Guardian was published on 5 November 1943. It was superseded by The Queensland Guardian, published from Brisbane.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Symons, Beverley. Communism in Australia: A Resource Bibliography. Sydney: National Libr. of Australia, 1994. p. 109
  2. ^ a b c McIlroy, Jim. The Red North: Queensland's History of Struggle. Chippendale, N.S.W.: Resistance Books, 2001. p. 23
  3. ^ a b c Fitzgerald, Ross. The People's Champion: Fred Paterson. St. Lucia: Univ. of Queensland Press, 1997. pp. 101–102
  4. ^ Arnold, John, Martyn Lyons, Craig Munro, and Robyn Sheahan-Bright. A History of the Book in Australia. St Lucia, Qld: University of Queensland Press, 2001. p. 52
  5. ^ Fitzgerald, Ross. The People's Champion: Fred Paterson. St. Lucia: Univ. of Queensland Press, 1997. p. 107
  6. ^ Watson, Joanne. Palm Island: Through a Long Lens. Canberra: Aboriginal Studies Press, 2010. p. 184
  7. ^ Austlit. The North Queensland Guardian