Obituaries Australia

  • Tip: searches only the name field
  • Tip: use double quotes to search for a phrase
  • Tip: lists of awards, schools, organisations etc

Browse Lists:

Cultural Advice

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website contains names, images, and voices of deceased persons.

In addition, some articles contain terms or views that were acceptable within mainstream Australian culture in the period in which they were written, but may no longer be considered appropriate.

These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Australian National University.

Richard James (Dick) Meagher (1871–1947)

The death occurred at Hobart yesterday of Mr. Richard J. Meagher, a former Public Service Commissioner and Mayor of Hobart, at the age of 76 years.

MR MEAGHER was born at Ballarat on July 21, 1871. He came to Tasmania in July, 1891, to lake a position in the Post and Telegraphs Department after five years' service in a similar capacity in Victoria. In 1894 he went to West Australia and was engaged in the Post and Telegraph office in Coolgardie during the gold rush period.

Shortly after his return to Tasmania, he was appointed in 1906 a member of the Public Service Board. He was a member of the Metropolitan Drainage Board and the Glebe Town Board. In 1909 he was elected an alderman of the Hobart City Council and became Mayor in 1914. He was one of the originators of the Greater Hobart movement and had the satisfaction of seeing its successful accomplishment.

From 1914 to 1918 he was chairman of the Public Service Board and from 1918 to 1922 was Assistant Public Service Commissioner. He was then made Commissioner. He was also chairman of thle Salaries Board, Returned Soldiers' Board for the Public Service, a member of the Mining Board, state president of the Federal Institute of Accountants, of which he was a fellow, and justice of the peace for the state.

He was for two years chief president of the Australian Natives' Association. He assisted in establishing bush nursing in Tasmania and was one of the trustees appointed by the then Governor General to administer the income of £10,000 allotted to Tasmania by the British Red Cross Society for, bush nursing purposes.

He was a member of the State Repatriation Board and chairman of the vocational training committee in connection with the repatriation of soldiers after the war. Mr. Meagher was instrumental in founding the Sailors and Soldiers' Association of Hobart and was the first president.

For many years he was chairman of the State Wages Board and carried out some notable work in connection with the creation of determinations. He was also a member of the Reference Board and for a considerable period chairman of that body.

Mr. Meagher retired from the position of Public Service Commissioner in August, 1941, but remained a member of the Public Service Classification Board and chairman of the board administering the Workers' Occupational Diseases Relief Fund until his death, which occurred following an operation on Monday.

Always keenly interested in sport. Mr. Meagher was prominent as a footballer and was for sometime chairman of the Tasmanian Football League. In 1894 he married Miss Adeline Nettlefold, a member of a well-known Hobart family. A son was killed at the Great War, and a second son, Mr. Eric Meagher, is in business in Hobart.

For many years Mr. Meagher wrote a weekly letter from the state capital for "The Examiner" and "Weekly Courier."

The Premier (Mr. Cosgrove) yesterday expressed regret at the death of Mr. Meagher. For many years he had been Public Service Commissioner and it was a tribute to his impartiality that he had held office during the terms of five Governments, Mr. Cosgrove said.

A requiem mass will be held by Archdeacon T. J. O'Donnell in the Church of the Holy Ghost, Sandy Bay at 7 a.m. to-morrow. A public service will be held in St. Mary's Cathedral at 10 a.m., after which the funeral will take place at Cornelian Bay.

Original publication

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Meagher, Richard James (Dick) (1871–1947)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 21 April 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]


21 July, 1871
Ballarat, Victoria, Australia


11 March, 1947 (aged 75)
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Cause of Death

surgical complications

Cultural Heritage

Includes subject's nationality; their parents' nationality; the countries in which they spent a significant part of their childhood, and their self-identity.

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.