David Murray (South Australian politician)

David Murray (28 December 1829 – 6 January 1907) was a politician in South Australia.

Early life


David Murray was born on 28 December 1829[1] in Anstruther, Fife, Scotland, a son of William Murray. He and his brother William Mackintosh Murray (c. 1831 – 25 November 1920) had some experience in the retail and wholesale drapery trade, which included supplying retailers in the young colony of South Australia.[2][1]



In early 1853 the brothers arrived in Adelaide, and began operating a retail drapery store in King William Street,[2] which became the wholesale draper D. & W. Murray Limited, then Goode, Durrant & Murray second in importance only to G. & R. Wills.

Public office


Murray was elected to the House of Assembly for East Adelaide on 28 March 1870, serving until 23 December 1871. He represented East Torrens from 27 March 1877 to 13 March 1878. Murray was elected for Yatala on 25 April 1881 but was unseated on 28 June after being found guilty of bribery and corruption within the meaning of the Electoral Act of 1879.[3]

In May 1882 Murray was elected to the South Australian Legislative Council, holding the seat until retiring on 14 April 1891.[1][4][5]

Murray was appointed Chief Secretary in the Downer ministry, in succession to J. B. Spence, in July 1886.[6]

Other activities


Murray was a foundation member of the SA Geographical Society and a member of the Caledonian Society of South Australia, and its Chief 1887–1888. He is remembered as a patron of the Arts, having bequeathed a large collection of prints to the Art Gallery of South Australia, together with £3,000 for the establishment of a print room.[7]

On 14 December 1886 Murray attended the inaugural dinner of the South Australian Institute of Architects at Beach's Cafe, along with almost every architect in the colony, and chairman of the Builders' Association and former mayor William Bundey.[8][9]

Personal life


On 9 May 1856 he married Rebecca Godfrey, and they had a son who died young. In March or April 1902 he left for England on account of the ill health of his wife, and never returned.[citation needed] He died on 6 January 1907.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d O'Neill, Sally. "Murray, David (1829–1907)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: National Centre of Biography, Australian National University. ISBN 978-0-522-84459-7. ISSN 1833-7538. OCLC 70677943. Retrieved 21 December 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Advertising". Adelaide Observer. 8 October 1853. p. 2. Retrieved 18 March 2017 – via National Library of Australia. The ADB reference contains an assertion that their first shop was in Gilbert Place.
  3. ^ "News of the Fortnight". The South Australian Advertiser. 22 June 1881. p. 2 (Unknown). Retrieved 22 August 2016 – via National Library of Australia.
  4. ^ "David Murray". Former members of the Parliament of South Australia. Retrieved 5 December 2022.
  5. ^ "Statistical record Of the Legislature 1836 - 2007" (PDF). S.A. Parliament. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 March 2019. Retrieved 21 December 2012.
  6. ^ Mennell, Philip (1892). "Murray, Hon. David" . The Dictionary of Australasian Biography. London: Hutchinson & Co – via Wikisource.
  7. ^ McCulloch, Alan Encyclopedia of Australian Art Hutchinson of London 1968
  8. ^ "South Australian Institute of Architects". The South Australian Advertiser. Vol. XXIX, no. 8787. South Australia. 16 December 1886. p. 6. Retrieved 16 April 2024 – via National Library of Australia.
  9. ^ "General news". The Express and Telegraph. Vol. XXIV, no. 6, 897. South Australia. 15 December 1886. p. 4 (First Edition.). Retrieved 16 April 2024 – via National Library of Australia.


Political offices
Preceded by Chief Secretary of South Australia
1887 – 1889
Succeeded by