The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Murray-Prior, Hon. Thomas Lodge

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Murray-Prior, Hon. Thomas Lodge, M.L.C., Chairman of Committees of the Legislative Council, Queensland, son of Lieut.-Colonel Thomas Murray-Prior, 11th Hussars, who was at the battle of Waterloo, by his second wife, Eliza, daughter of W. A. Skynner, of Moor Hall, Berkshire. He was born on Nov. 13th, 1819, at Wells, Somerset, and was educated under Rev. Wm. Drury at Brussels, Monsieur Giron at Reading, and Dr. Burney at Gosport. He emigrated to Sydney, arriving in May 1839; subsequently he proceeded to Queensland, and ultimately became first Departmental Postmaster-General for the colony, a position which he held for about five years. After the separation of the colony from New South Wales he was Postmaster-General in the second Herbert Ministry from July 21st to August 7th, 1866, and held the same office in the Mackenzie Ministry from Aug. 15th, 1867, to Nov. 25th, 1868. He was reappointed Postmaster-General in the Palmer Ministry on May 3rd, 1870, and held the post till Jan. 8th, 1874. On all of these occasions Mr. Murray-Prior represented the Government in the Legislative Council, to which he was appointed on Feb. 22nd, 1866. Mr. Murray-Prior succeeded the Hon. D. F. Roberts as Chairman of Committees on July 31st, 1889. He was married first, at South Creek, Sydney, N.S.W., on Sept. 3rd, 1846, to Matilda, daughter of Thomas Harpur, of Cecil Hills, Liverpool, in that colony (who died on Nov. 25th, 1868); and, secondly, at Ryde, Parramatta River, N.S.W., on Dec. 18th, 1872, to Nora Clarina, daughter of Robert Johnstone Barton, of Boree, Nevang, N.S.W.