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Makin, Frank (1842–1924)

from Advertiser (Adelaide)

The death of Colonel Frank Makin at his residence, "Keynedon," North Adelaide, on Saturday, in his 83rd year, has removed a fine soldier of the old school, whose name is indissolubly associated with the history of the voluntary military movements of this State. He was born at Salford, Lancashire, in 1842, and was educated at Blackpool. His military career began in Lancashire where he was appointed ensign in the 59th Lancashire Rifle Lancers. He rose to the position of captain in six years, and on coming to South Australia was appointed a captain in the military forces (Adelaide Rifles), in 1877. He became a major in 1880, lieutenant colonel in 1882, and colonel in 1896. He was the brigade commanding officer, and during the absence of Colonel Gordon, acted as Commandant of the State forces for nearly a year. His other appointments included Hon. A.D.C. to Sir William Robinson, Sir W. F. Jervois, Lord Kintore, Lord Tennyson, and the Lieutenant-Governor of South Australia. Many men prominent in South Australia were associated with Colonel Makin in the old Adelaide Rifles. Among them were Colonel Madley, Captain Clark, Captain (afterwards colonel) Sydney Beach, Messrs. Plummer, W. J. Hinde, Fance, T. E. Medlyn, and H. P. Wilson. Colonel Makin was a confirmed believer in compulsory military training, and as an old officer of the volunteer system, spoke with authority on the subject. Just prior to the outbreak of the Great War he said the class of soldier he expected Australia to turn out was very fine indeed, and he considered the Commonwealth would establish a splendid army. "It is quite possible they may be wanted, too," he remarked. Three months later, as all the world knows, the Australian Army was wanted, and wanted very badly. How the men responded is a matter of history, and no one was prouder of their achievements in the field than Colonel Makin. He did not take a great deal of interest in other matters, as he made military work practically his whole life's hobby. He was interested in the pastoral industry, taking up the business soon after his arrival in the State. He was well known through his connection with Koonoona Station. He married, in 1870, Miss Louisa Caroline Duffield (daughter of the Hon. Walter Duffield) who survives. There are three sons. Dr. F. H. Makin, of Adelaide, Lieutenant-Colonel E. L. Makin, D.S.O., in the British Army and Mr. Guy Makin of North Adelaide.

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Citation details

'Makin, Frank (1842–1924)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 26 November 2020.

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