William Christie Buik (13 May 1824 – 6 February 1903) was Mayor of Adelaide 1878-1879.
Buik was born on 13 May 1824 in Dundee, Scotland of Andrew Buik and Elizabeth (or Elspeth) née Edward. He married Jane Clark Spankie on 22 November 1848 in Dundee, and they came to South Australia by the ship Coromandel in April 1849. Together they had seven children, all born in Adelaide:
|1||James Spankie BUIK||21 Sep 1849||Emma Daws||19 Dec 1871||Prizewinning student of AEI|
|2||William Burness BUIK||10 May 1851||9 Oct 1853|||
|3||Robert Whyte BUIK||8 Jun 1852||Louise Pitt||9 Mar 1880|
|4||Helen Spankie BUIK||5 Jan 1854||Frederick William Baily||8 Jun 1877||10 Jul 1937|
|5||Jane Spankie BUIK||2 Dec 1856||Captain Alexander Bruce||29 Nov 1876||Nov 1890|
|6||Emily Margaret BUIK||23 Jul 1860||16 Jul 1886|
|7||William Edward BUIK||5 Dec 1862||Florence Adelaide Jury||1891||10 Nov 1929|
Buik began business as a partner and representative of Mr Robert Whyte, hardware merchant, under the style of Messrs. R. Whyte and Co. He subsequently moved to Rundle Street where he carried on business in his own account.
He took an active interest in public affairs and entered the Adelaide Corporation as Councillor for Hindmarsh Ward in 1863 and served in that capacity for two years. From 1866-1868 he was mayor of Kensington and Norwood.
In 1878 he became Mayor of Adelaide. He filled the Chief Magistracy for a year and afterwards occupied a seat in the Council as Councillor for Hindmarsh Ward from 1879–1881 and as Alderman from 1881-1884. He was again returned as Alderman in 1892, and retired in 1895.
Adelaide and Suburban Tramway Company
In 1871 William visited England and acquired valuable information and experience regarding the working of the tramway systems there. He had previously advocated the construction of tramways in Adelaide[to whom?][when?] and was the first to suggest this method of locomotion.[to whom?] As soon as he returned,[when?] he took a leading part in establishing the Adelaide and Suburban Tramway Company, which was the first of the kind in Australia. He was chosen as Chairman, a position he held up to the time of his death.
From 1867-1870 he was Captain of the Scottish Volunteer Rifle Club. When the Duke of Edinburgh visited SA,[when?] His Royal Highness was so pleased with the discipline and military appearance of the Scottish Rifle Corps that he permitted the company to adopt the title of the "Duke of Edinburgh's Own".
In 1879, he was appointed Captain in the Volunteer Reserve Force.
William served in Parliament for several years. In 1881 he secured a seat in the Legislative Assembly as one of the representatives of the colony (which then formed a single constituency) and served the electors until 1888.
He was a member of the Adelaide Licensing Bench for many years and had a seat on the boards of public companies and some charitable institutions.
He took an active interest in religious work. William was a prominent member of the Congregational Church and for many years prior to his death had been a deacon of the Hindmarsh Square Church. He also held a seat on the Council of the Congregational Union, and was on the management committee of the South Australian Auxiliary to the British and Foreign Bible Society.
Jane died on 14 Nov 1890, at Norwood, and was buried on 17 Nov 1890, at West Terrace Cemetery. William died on 6 Feb 1903, at Norwood.
There is a photograph of William Christie Buik which hangs with other photographs of former Mayors in the entrance to the Lord Mayor's office. There is also a portrait in oils of William which hangs in the Council Chamber.
- William Christie Buik, members.iinet.net.au
- Birth notice, 12 May 1851, South Australian Register, pg.2
- Death notice, 11 Oct 1853, South Australian Register, pg.2
- Kensington and Norwood Corporation, 30 Nov 1867, The South Australian Advertiser, pg.2
- Fifty Years Ago, From The Register, 27 November 1877, 29 November 1927, The Register, Pg.10.
- Appointments, The Government Gazette, reproduced 30 May 1879 in the South Australian Register, pg.7