Sir William Wellington Cairns, KCMG (1828 – 1888) was a British colonial administrator.

Life

Cairns was born in Belfast on 3 March 1828 (as indicated on his grave stone).

He served in various senior colonial civil service posts in the British Empire including Trinidad,[1][2] moving due to health issues,[3] before being appointed Governor of Queensland in January 1875. He held the post for two years before becoming the Administrator of South Australia in 1877.[4]

Cairns was given a CMG in 1874, followed by a knighthood in 1877.[5] Later reflections of his contributions to colonial public life were not considered highly:

Of all the pestilent "returned colonists" who misrepresent things Australian in London perhaps not one is equal as a nuisance to a retired Australian Governor.[6]

He subsequently returned to England where he died in London on 7 July 1888,[7][8] unmarried.[9] He is buried in a modest grave against the east wall of Brompton Cemetery near the north-east corner with Anna Maria Cairns, his sister.[10]

The grave of William Wellington Cairns, Brompton Cemetery, London

Legacy

The city of Cairns in Queensland was named after him in 1876.[11][12][13]

References

  1. ^ "The late Sir W. W. CAIRNS". Adelaide Observer. South Australia. 21 July 1888. p. 31. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  2. ^ "Our Illustrations". The Illustrated Adelaide News. South Australia. 1 January 1877. p. 10. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  3. ^ "His Excellency Governor CAIRNS". Queensland Times, Ipswich Herald And General Advertiser. Queensland, Australia. 28 January 1875. p. 3. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  4. ^ "STATISTICAL RECORD OF THE LEGISLATURE 1836 - 2007" (PDF). Table A: Governors and Administrators. Parliament of South Australia. 24 April 2007. p. 2. Retrieved 2 January 2019.
  5. ^ "DEATH OF SIR W. W. CAIRNS". The Express And Telegraph. South Australia. 19 July 1888. p. 3 (Second Edition). Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  6. ^ "CAIRNS on Chinese". The Australian Star. New South Wales, Australia. 31 May 1888. p. 4 (FIRST EDITION). Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  7. ^ "Death of Sir William CAIRNS". The Argus (Melbourne). Victoria, Australia. 19 July 1888. p. 9. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  8. ^ "Sir William Cairns". The Sunday Mail (Brisbane). Queensland, Australia. 1 July 1928. p. 28. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  9. ^ "Chronicles of Queensland". Truth (Brisbane newspaper). Queensland, Australia. 9 June 1912. p. 12. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  10. ^ "Anna Maria Cairns (1808-1890) Grave Site". BillionGraves. Retrieved 10 January 2018.
  11. ^ "THE ELECTORAL ROLLS". The Telegraph (1, 246). Queensland, Australia. 9 October 1876. p. 3. Retrieved 5 September 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  12. ^ "Cairns, Trinity Bay". The Northern Miner. Queensland, Australia. 6 December 1876. p. 2. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.
  13. ^ "Early days in Cairns". Townsville Daily Bulletin. Queensland, Australia. 18 September 1946. p. 4. Retrieved 17 May 2020 – via Trove.

External links

Government offices
Preceded by

1867 – 1869
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Lieutenant Governor of Saint Christopher
1869 – 1870
Succeeded by

as President of Saint Christopher
Preceded by
James Robert Longden
Lieutenant Governor of British Honduras
1870 – 1874
Succeeded by
Robert Miller Mundy
Preceded by
James Robert Longden
Governor of Trinidad
1874
Succeeded by
Henry Turner Irving
Preceded by
George Phipps, 2nd Marquess of Normanby
Governor of Queensland
1875 – 1877
Succeeded by
Sir Arthur Edward Kennedy
Preceded by
Richard Davies Hanson
Administrator of South Australia
1877
Succeeded by
Samuel James Way