Robert Cosgrove

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Honourable
Sir Robert Cosgrove
Cosgrove Sir Robert HA 355.jpg
Sir Robert Cosgrove KCMG
30th Premier of Tasmania
In office
18 December 1939 – 18 December 1947
Preceded by Edmund Dwyer-Gray
Succeeded by Edward Brooker
Constituency Denison
In office
25 February 1948 – 26 August 1958
Preceded by Edward Brooker
Succeeded by Eric Reece
Personal details
Born (1884-12-28)28 December 1884
Tea Tree, Tasmania, Australia
Died 25 August 1969(1969-08-25) (aged 84)
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Nationality Australia Australian
Political party Australian Labor Party
Spouse(s) Dame Gertrude Cosgrove

Sir Robert Cosgrove KCMG (28 December 1884 – 25 August 1969) was an Australian politician, trade unionist, and twice Premier of Tasmania from 18 December 1939 to 18 December 1947 and 25 February 1948 to 26 August 1958. His eighteen years as premier remains the longest in Tasmania's history; he dominated the state's Australian Labor Party branch for a generation.

Elected to the Tasmanian House of Assembly for Denison in 1919, he was defeated in 1922. He regained the seat in 1925, holding it until 1931. Reelected in 1934, he remained in the legislature until his retirement in 1958.

He was minister administering the Hydro-Electric Commission Act for sixteen years between 1942 and 1958[1]

He was married to Dame Gertrude Cosgrove from 1911 until her death in 1962; they had four children, including a son who was killed in World War II; another son, Henry Cosgrove, became a Judge of the Supreme Court of Tasmania. She was appointed DBE in 1947.

In December 1947, Cosgrove was indicted on charges of bribery and corruption. He stood down as Premier during his trial, and longtime minister Edward Brooker was sworn in as his replacement on 19 December 1947. The trial was concluded by February the next year, and Cosgrove was acquitted. Brooker stood down and Cosgrove was reinstated, appointing Brooker as Treasurer and Minister for Transport.[2]

Cosgrove was chairman of the Tasmanian Tourist Council and of the Southern Tasmanian Trotting Association. He was also a member of the council of the University of Tasmania (1940–46 and 1948–55) and of the local branch of the St Vincent de Paul Society, and president of the Royal Hobart Golf Club.

Cosgrove was knighted as a KCMG in 1958.


  1. ^ Garvie, R. M. H. (1962) A million horses: Tasmania's power in the mountains Hobart: Hydro-Electric Commission, Tasmania. page 27
  2. ^ Parliamentary Library profile, Parliament of Tasmania, 24 November 2005.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Edmund Dwyer-Gray
Premier of Tasmania
Succeeded by
Edward Brooker
Preceded by
Edward Brooker
Premier of Tasmania
Succeeded by
Eric Reece