William Tennant Mortlock

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William Tennant Mortlock (1858 – 17 August 1913) was a South Australian grazier and politician.[1]

Mortlock was born near Port Lincoln, the son of William Ranson Mortlock. He was educated at St Peter's College, Adelaide and Jesus College, Cambridge. He read for the law at the Inner Temple while in England, but returned to South Australia in 1883 and did not pursue his legal studies further. He worked on his father's Yudnapinna Station, near Port Augusta, and he increased the family's pastoral property after inheriting it upon his father's death in 1884.[2][3] In 1891 he purchased Martindale Hall at Mintaro, which would become his family's main station.[4][3]

Mortlock was elected to the South Australian House of Assembly at the 1896 election, winning his father's old seat of Flinders.[5][6] In parliament, he was a supporter of interstate free trade.[3] He was defeated in an upset result by David McKenzie at the 1899 election; he had been thought to have had a safe hold on the seat.[7] He re-entered parliament in 1901, winning a by-election for Flinders caused by the election of Alexander Poynton to the inaugural Australian House of Representatives at the 1901 federal election.[8] However, he was again defeated at the 1902 election.[9]

He was heavily involved with the racing industry, serving as chairman of the Port Augusta Racing Club and co-founding the Martindale Racing Club; he also bred and raced Yudnapinna, winner of the 1911 Adelaide Grand National.[2][3]

He was married to Rosina Forsyth Tennant[10] on 28 January 1891 at St. Peter's Church, Glenelg in a double-wedding with her sister, Clayre Jessie Tennant, both daughters of Andrew Tennant. Rosina and William were cousins, as Andrew Tennant was a brother of William's mother Margaret.

He died in a private hospital in North Adelaide in 1913, aged 55, following a six-month illness. He was interred in the Mortlock family vault at the North Road Cemetery.[11] He was reported to have been one of the largest holders of pastoral property in the state, with over 2000 square miles of land.[12][3]


  1. ^ "Mr William Mortlock". Parliament of South Australia. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  2. ^ a b "OBITUARY.". Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954). Adelaide, SA: National Library of Australia. 23 August 1913. p. 45. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "DEATH OF MR. W. T, MORTLOCK.". The Journal. Adelaide, SA: National Library of Australia. 18 August 1913. p. 4. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  4. ^ "Martindale Hall". Martindale Hall. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  5. ^ "MR. W. T. MORTLOCK.". The Express and Telegraph (Adelaide, SA : 1867 - 1922). Adelaide, SA: National Library of Australia. 11 May 1896. p. 2 Edition: SECOND EDITION. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  6. ^ "The General Elections.". Quorn Mercury (SA : 1895 - 1954). SA: National Library of Australia. 8 May 1896. p. 1. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  7. ^ "A PROGRESSIVE POLITICIAN.". Quiz and the Lantern (Adelaide, SA : 1890 - 1900). Adelaide, SA: National Library of Australia. 2 November 1899. p. 4. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  8. ^ "MR. W. T. MORTLOCK, M.P.". Evening Journal (Adelaide, SA : 1869 - 1912). Adelaide, SA: National Library of Australia. 29 June 1901. p. 5. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  9. ^ "THE GENERAL ELECTIONS.". The Register (Adelaide, SA : 1901 - 1929). Adelaide, SA: National Library of Australia. 8 May 1902. p. 6. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  10. ^ "OBITUARY". The Advertiser (Adelaide). South Australia. 14 August 1939. p. 12. Retrieved 28 March 2016 – via National Library of Australia. 
  11. ^ "Death of Mr W. T. Mortlock.". The Port Augusta Dispatch, Newcastle and Flinders Chronicle (SA : 1885 - 1916). SA: National Library of Australia. 22 August 1913. p. 4. Retrieved 14 January 2016. 
  12. ^ "DEATH OF MR W. T. MORTLOCK.". The South Eastern Times (Millicent, SA : 1906 - 1954). Millicent, SA: National Library of Australia. 19 August 1913. p. 3. Retrieved 14 January 2016.