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Hewan Leslie Archdall (1868–1950)

Mr Hewan Leslie Archdall, CBE, former Chief Police Magistrate in Brisbane, died yesterday, aged 81, at his Gregory Terrace home.

At the time of his retirement in 1934, after 52 years in the Public Service, he was named as the soundest lawyer on the Lower Bench.

He was a police magistrate for 36 years.

His career was full of incident. In 1919, surrounded by armed police, he read the Riot Act in Merivale Street, South Brisbane, where there were fierce disturbances between a party of Russians and some returned soldiers.

The mob surged forward and Mr Archdall was severely injured in the thigh by a bayonet.

He narrowly escaped serious injury in a brawl between Kanaka canecutters and white workers in Bundaberg while he was magistrate there. He was returning in his trap from the seaside when he heard the Kanaka's war-cry in the town. He rushed into the fight, in which blocks of wood were used and one man was killed.

In every instance but one his decisions were upheld on appeal.

Mr Archdall became Chief Police Magistrate in 1916, and was decorated by the King with the rank of Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

Among districts in which he served as police magistrate were Thargomindah, Tambo, Bundaberg and Rockhampton.

He came from England with his family in 1880, and began his career with the legal firm of Flower and Hart. He was for a time lieutenant in charge of the garrison artillery of the Moreton Regiment at Victoria Barracks.

Mr Archdall leaves a widow, and one daughter, Mrs Douglas Gibson, of Hunter's Hill, Gore.

Original publication

Citation details

'Archdall, Hewan Leslie (1868–1950)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 29 September 2023.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2023

Life Summary [details]


24 March, 1868


7 January, 1950 (aged 81)
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Cultural Heritage

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