Josiah Francis

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The Honourable
Sir Josiah Francis
Josiah Francis.jpg
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Moreton
In office
16 December 1922 – 4 November 1955
Preceded by Arnold Wienholt
Succeeded by James Killen
Personal details
Born (1890-03-28)28 March 1890
Ipswich, Queensland
Died 22 February 1964(1964-02-22) (aged 73)
Toowong, Queensland
Nationality Australian
Political party Nationalist (1922–31)
UAP (1931–45)
Liberal (1945–55)
Spouse(s) Edna Clarke Cribb
Occupation Soldier

Sir Josiah Francis (28 March 1890 – 22 February 1964) was an Australian politician and Minister for the Army.

Francis was born in Ipswich, Queensland and educated at Christian Brothers' College, Ipswich and was appointed as a clerk in the Queensland Department of Justice in 1908. During World War I, he was appointed second lieutenant in the first Australian Imperial Force and served on the Western Front from April 1917. He was wounded and spent some time in hospital in England.[1]

Political career[edit]

Francis was elected to the Australian House of Representatives from the Brisbane-area seat of Moreton at the 1922 election as a member of the Nationalist Party of Australia. He continued to hold the seat until his retirement in November 1955 as a member of the main centre-right party—Nationalist (1922-1931), UAP (1931-1944) and Liberal (1944-1955). In April 1927, he married Edna Clarke Cribb—they had no children.

He was Minister in charge of War Service Homes from 1932 to 1934. He had been a member of the Returned Sailors' and Soldiers' Imperial League of Australia since 1920 and supported returned servicemen's issues. In 1943, while in opposition, he moved an amendment to allow the payment of full pensions to returned servicemen who were suffering from tuberculosis regardless of whether or not it could be shown to be caused by war service. Unusually in Australia, his amendment was passed without dissent. With the election of the Menzies government at the December 1949 election, he was appointed Minister for the Army and Minister for the Navy. He held the army portfolio until his retirement and the navy portfolio until May 1951; he was also Minister for the Navy from July 1954 until his retirement.[1]

In 1956, Francis was appointed Australian consul general to New York. He was knighted in 1957 and retired to Brisbane in 1961. He died in the Brisbane suburb of Toowong, survived by his wife.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Rees, Jacqueline (1996). "Francis, Sir Josiah (1890–1964)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 

External links[edit]

Political offices
New title Minister in charge of War Service Homes
Succeeded by
Harold Thorby
Preceded by
Cyril Chambers
Minister for the Army
Succeeded by
Eric Harrison
Preceded by
Bill Riordan
Minister for the Navy
Succeeded by
Philip McBride
Preceded by
William McMahon
Minister for the Navy
Succeeded by
Eric Harrison
Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Arnold Wienholt
Member for Moreton
Succeeded by
James Killen
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Edward Smart
Australian Consul General in New York
Succeeded by
Roden Cutler