Three Typed Letters Signed (all 'J T. Walker'), and one Autograph Note, to Sir Henry Trueman Wood, Secretary, Royal Society of Arts. Together with 19 newspaper cuttings relating to unions and strikes in Australia.

James Thomas Walker (1841-1923), Australian banker, born in Scotland [unions and strikes in Australia; William Morris Hughes (1862-1952), Prime Minister of Australia; Wharf Labourers Union]
Publication details: 
Two letters of 16 March 1916 and one of 24 March 1916; all three on letterhead of Yaralla Chambers, 109 Pitt Street, Sydney; autograph note of 21 March 1916, from Sydney, New South Wales.
SKU: 6618

The letters and note are good, on lightly aged paper; the third letter with closed tear at foot of both leaves, affecting Walker's signature. Two of the three letters are docketed and bear the Society's stamp. The cuttings good on aged high-acidity paper. Letter One (4to, 1 p): He cannot afford the Society's subscription, due to 'the immensely increased taxation by the Federal Government, and by the State Governments in N.S. Wales and Queensland (not to mention donations to various War Funds)'. Letter Two (4to, 3 pp): He notices that 'our "Labour" Prime Minister is being feted in an admirable and very hospitable manner by the Mother Country. So far, good.' Asks Wood to 'get some person (public man if possible) to ask the Rt. Hon. W. M. Hughes P.C.' two questions. 'For your private information, Mr. Hughes has been the most prominent Member of the Wharf Labourers Union for years, and at the present time, notwithstanding the war, Unionists will not work alongside non-Unionists, are never long satisfied with the ruling rates of wages, [...] So much for Australian Wharf Labourers' Patriotism!' He is enclosing '17 newspaper cuttings' from which Wood 'will have some slight idea of the extraordinary political goings on here under Labour Ministries. Mr Hughes and I are on friendly terms outside politics. I have always admired his pluck and ability, and, as I was in the Senate from 1901 to 1913 (when my health obliged me to reluctantly retire into private life) we used to meet frequently.' The third page of the letter lists the 'Newspaper extracts', with comments on most. The accompanying cuttings are numbered, and two are lacking (numbers 11 and 17). Letter Three (4to, 2 pp) encloses 'information re Wharf Labourers' Wages in Sydney, supplied to me by the Manager of one of the Shipping Companies here'. 'If the Rt Hon Wm Hughes remains at home, it may or may not be a good thing for the public at large, but it will probably have the effect of smashing up the Federal Labour Party into two - the Extremes and the Moderates. Whatever Hughes' faults may be, he has been a splendid friend to the Labour Unionist Party in Australia.' Second leaf headed 'Wharf Labourers' Wages'. Accompanied by the autograph note, to which are attached a further four newspaper cuttings, headed 'Preference. New Federal Regulation.', 'Routed by Returned Soldiers. Yarra Bank Scenes.', 'Strikes. Drillers at Eveleigh Workshops. Halfpenny per Hour Involved.' and 'Fair Rents.'