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Sir William Wellington Cairns, KCMG (1828 – 1888) was a British colonial administrator.

Sir William Wellington Cairns

William Cairns.jpg
Governor of Trinidad
In office
2 May 1874 – 27 May 1874
MonarchQueen Victoria
Preceded byJames Robert Longden
Succeeded byHenry Turner Irving
4th Governor of Queensland
In office
23 January 1875 – 14 March 1877
MonarchQueen Victoria
Preceded byGeorge Phipps, 2nd Marquess of Normanby
Succeeded bySir Arthur Edward Kennedy
Personal details
Born(1828-03-03)3 March 1828
Co. Down, Ireland, UK
Died9 July 1888(1888-07-09) (aged 60)
London, England, UK
NationalityUnited Kingdom British


He was born in Belfast on 3 March 1828.[citation needed]

He served in various senior colonial civil service posts in the British Empire before being appointed Governor of Queensland in January 1875. He held the post for two years before becoming the Administrator of South Australia in 1877.[1]

He subsequently returned to England where he died in London on 7 July 1888.[citation needed]

He is buried in a modest grave against the east wall of Brompton Cemetery near the north-east corner with Anna Maria Cairns, his sister.[2]

The grave of William Wellington Cairns, Brompton Cemetery, London


The city of Cairns in Queensland was named after him.[3]


  1. ^ "STATISTICAL RECORD OF THE LEGISLATURE 1836 - 2007" (PDF). Table A: Governors and Administrators. Parliament of South Australia. 24 April 2007. p. 2. Retrieved 2 January 2019.
  2. ^ "Anna Maria Cairns (1808-1890) Grave Site". BillionGraves. Retrieved 10 January 2018.
  3. ^ "THE ELECTORAL ROLLS". The Telegraph (1, 246). Queensland, Australia. 9 October 1876. p. 3. Retrieved 5 September 2018 – via National Library of Australia.

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