Walter Massy-Greene

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Honourable
Sir Walter Massy-Greene
Walter Massy-Greene.jpg
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Richmond
In office
13 April 1910 – 16 December 1922
Preceded by Thomas Ewing
Succeeded by Roland Green
Senator for New South Wales
In office
17 October 1923 – 13 November 1925
Preceded by Edward Millen
In office
1 July 1926 – 30 June 1938
Personal details
Born (1874-11-06)6 November 1874
Camberwell, England
Died 16 November 1952(1952-11-16) (aged 78)
East Melbourne, Victoria
Nationality English Australian
Political party Liberal (1910–16)
Nationalist (1916–31)
UAP (1931–38)
Occupation Farmer

Sir Walter Massy-Greene KCMG (6 November 1874 – 16 November 1952) was an Australian politician and businessman.

Early life[edit]

Massy-Greene was born in Camberwell, London England as Walter Massy Greene, son of John Greene, a brewer and hotel proprietor. Greene was educated at Lynton House College, Oxfordshire. He emigrated to Australia in 1891. He worked as a farmer, gold prospector and bank officer before becoming a dairy farmer in the Lismore area. Greene was elected to local government prior to standing for Federal Parliament.[1]


Greene was elected to the House of Representatives for the seat of Richmond in 1910 election. He was initially elected as a member of the Commonwealth Liberal Party. Around this time he started to refer to himself informally as "Walter Massy-Greene". However, in 1917, following the Australian Conscription Crisis, the Commonwealth Liberal Party and the National Labor Party formed a coalition and Massy-Greene became a member of the resultant Nationalist Party. He continued to represent Richmond until 1922 when he was defeated by a Country Party candidate. He was appointed as a Nationalist Party Senator for New South Wales in 1923 and served to the 1925 election, when he was elected to the Senate from July 1926. He remained in the Senate until his retirement in 1938.[1]

In the fourth Hughes Ministry Massy-Greene was an Honorary Minister in charge of matters relating to price-fixing (27 March 1918 – 17 January 1919). He was then promoted to be Minister for Trade and Customs (17 January 1919 – 21 December 1921). On 10 March 1921 he became the first Minister for Health, a position he held until 5 February 1923. He then became Minister for Defence until 5 February 1923.[1]

He was relegated to the back bench during the Bruce Ministry. In the First Lyons Ministry he became the minister assisting the Leader of the Government in the Senate (6 January 1932 – 23 June 1932) and Assistant Treasurer (6 January 1932 – 25 September 1933).

He was appointed a Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George in June 1933, in recognition of his service as Assistant Treasurer.[2] He subsequently formally changed his surname to Massy-Greene to reflect his usage over the previous two decades.

In 1936, Massy-Greene became chairman of Associated Pulp and Paper Mills Ltd. on its formation, a post which he held until his death. He was also the chairman of the Emu Bay Railway Company and a director of the Electrolytic Zinc Company, Felt and Textiles of Australia Ltd., Yarra Falls Ltd., and many other companies.[3]

On 13 November 1952, he was admitted to Freemasons Hospital, Melbourne and underwent an operation the following day. After "progressing satisfactorily" he died on 16 November.[3]


  1. ^ a b c Lloyd, C. J. "Massy-Greene, Sir Walter (1874–1952)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University. Retrieved 24 November 2007. 
  2. ^ It's an Honour
  3. ^ a b "Sir Walter Massy_Greene Dies After Operation". The Advocate (Burnie). National Library of Australia. 17 November 1952. p. 4. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
Political offices
Preceded by
William Watt
Minister for Trade and Customs
Succeeded by
Arthur Rodgers
Preceded by
George Pearce
Minister for Defence
Succeeded by
Eric Bowden
New title
Split from Trade and Customs
Minister for Health
Succeeded by
Austin Chapman
Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Thomas Ewing
Member for Richmond
Succeeded by
Roland Green