|Member of the Western Australian Parliament
31 October 1911 – 30 September 1915
|Preceded by||Henry Osborn|
|Succeeded by||William Butcher|
|Born||Joseph Peter Gardiner
4 July 1886
Adelaide, South Australia
|Died||23 January 1965
|Political party||Australian Labor Party|
|Spouse(s)||May Holman (1914-1920)
Bertha Paver (1922-?)
Joseph Peter Gardiner (4 July 1886 – 23 January 1965) was the Australian Labor Party member for the Western Australian Legislative Assembly seat of Roebourne from 1911 to 1915. His sudden and still unexplained departure from Western Australia in 1915 was an important factor in the collapse of John Scaddan's Labor government.
Joseph Gardiner was born in Adelaide, South Australia on 4 July 1886. He was educated at the Christian Brothers College in Adelaide, and was then apprenticed to his bootmaker father in West Perth in Western Australia. He later went to the Pilbara region, where he traded on the coast between Cossack and Broome. He was secretary of the Miners' Union at Whim Creek, and from 1910 to 1912 was manager of the Weld Hotel in Cossack.
In May 1914, Gardiner secretly married May Holman at the Perth Registry Office, but the marriage was never consummated and a divorce was finalised in 1920. Shortly after the marriage Gardiner left the State, never to return. After an extended absence from Parliament, inquiries were eventually made as to his whereabouts. When it was learned that he had left the State, Gardiner's seat was declared vacant on 30 September 1915, on the grounds of non-attendance. The Labor Party did not retain the seat in the subsequent by-election, and its majority of two was erased. Shortly afterwards, another Labor member resigned, and John Scaddan's government was defeated.
Little is known of the rest of Gardiner's life. After he left Western Australia, Gardiner went to South Australia, then to Victoria where he enlisted in early 1916. He was working as a labourer in Adelaide in 1922, and in June of that year, he married Bertha Annie Paver. He subsequently worked at various occupations while living for many years in Melbourne, Victoria. From 1932, he lived at Bentleigh, Victoria. He was listed on the Victorian electoral rolls as a "journalist" when he died on 23 January 1965.
- Black, David (1981). "Party Politics in Turmoil". In Stannage, C. T. (ed.). A New History of Western Australia. Nedlands, Western Australia: University of Western Australia Press. ISBN 0-85564-170-3.
- Black, David (1981). "The Era of Labor Ascendancy". In Stannage, C. T. (ed.). A New History of Western Australia. Nedlands, Western Australia: University of Western Australia Press. ISBN 0-85564-170-3.
- Black, David; Bolton, Geoffrey (2001). Biographical Register of Members of the Parliament of Western Australia, Volume One, 1870–1930 (Revised ed.). Parliament House: Parliament of Western Australia. ISBN 0730738140.