Forster ministry

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Forster ministry
5th cabinet of the Colony of New South Wales
PremierWilliamForster.jpg Australian states history 09.gif Australian states history 10.gif
Premier William Forster and the Colony of New South Wales (1856–1859)
Date formed 27 October 1859 (1859-10-27)
Date dissolved 8 March 1860 (1860-03-08)
People and organisations
Head of government William Forster
Head of state Queen Victoria (represented by William Denison)
No. of ministers 6
Member party unaligned
Status in legislature Minority government
Opposition party unaligned
Opposition leader
Predecessor Second Cowper ministry
Successor First Robertson ministry

The Forster ministry was the fifth ministry of the Colony of New South Wales, and was led by the Honourable William Forster. Forster was elected in the first free elections for the New South Wales Legislative Assembly held in March 1856. He was asked to form Government after the second Cowper ministry lost an educational bill in the Assembly.

The title of Premier was widely used to refer to the Leader of Government, but not enshrined in formal use until 1920.

There was no party system in New South Wales politics until 1887. Under the constitution, ministers were required to resign to recontest their seats in a by-election when appointed. These by-elections are only noted when the minister was defeated; in general, he was elected unopposed.

This ministry covers the period of just four months from 27 October 1859 until 8 March 1860, when Forster resigned his commission.[1][2]

Composition of ministry[edit]

Portfolio Minister Term start Term end Term length
Colonial Secretary
Hon. William Forster MLA 27 October 1859 8 March 1860 133 days
Colonial Treasurer Hon. Saul Samuel MLA
Secretary for Lands Hon. John Black MLA
Secretary for Public Works
Representative of the Government in Legislative Council
Hon. Geoffrey Eagar MLC
Attorney-General Hon. Edward Wise MLAa 27 October 1859 13 February 1860 109 days
Hon. Sir William Manning MLA 21 February 1860 8 March 1860 16 days
Solicitor-General Hon. John Hargrave MLA 3 November 1859 126 days

:a Edward Wise resigned his commission in 1860 and was appointed a Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Serle, Percival. "Forster, William (1818-1882)". Dictionary of Australian Biography. Project Gutenberg Australia. Retrieved 2007-03-10. 
  2. ^ "Former Members - Chronological List of Ministries 1856 to 2009 (requires download)". Project for the Sesquicentenary of Responsible Government in NSW. Parliament of New South Wales. Archived from the original (Excel spreadsheet) on 15 March 2011. Retrieved 2010-01-02. 
Preceded by
Second Cowper ministry
Forster ministry
Succeeded by
First Robertson ministry