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State Library of South Australia Advance Australia : South Australia and Federation

Contemporary sources - The Observer

Observer Masthead

1882-1884 | 1885-1887 | 1888-1889 | 1890-1892 | 1893-1894 | 1895 | 1896 | 1897 | 1898 | 1899 | 1900 | 1901

Observer 21 January 1888
p. 14 cols. C,D. 'The Federal Council. Sir Samuel Griffith elected President.' [Second session of Federal Council. South Australia not present.]
Observer 16 June 1888
p. 22 cols. A,B. 'The Inter-colonial Free-trade Conference.' '. . . the motion affirming the desirability of establishing intercolonial free trade based upon a Customs Union with a uniform tariff was carried unanimously.' [Chambers of Manufacturers and Chambers of Commerce from various colonies, including South Australia, represented.]
Observer 30 June 1888
p. 25 cols. A-C. 'The Chinese Conference and Bill.' [Attempt to establish uniform legislation in colonies to restrict 'influx of Chinese.']
Observer 7 July 1888
p. 25 cols. C-E. 'The Federal Council.' 'It is not a Federal Council at all. It is a body composed like an ordinary Intercolonial Conference . . .'
Observer 20 October 1888
p. 25 cols. B,C. 'Federation and finance.' 'We agree with Mr Kingston that the [Federal Council] Bill can only be regarded as a temporary expedient; but we doubt whether it will facilitate the ultimate adoption of complete federation.'
Observer 17 November 1888
p. 24 col. E; p. 25 cols. A,B. Editorial. 'The Federal Council Bill.' [House of Assembly discussion: Mr Ward against the Bill; J. Downer supports the Bill.]
p. 30 col. E. 'Australian Natives' Association.' 'The first meeting of the combined Australian patriotic Societies - the Australian National Union and the Australian Natives' Association - was held in Beach's Rooms on Monday evening, November 12 . . . The Hon. J.C. Bray, M.P. (Speaker of the Assembly), was elected President . . . he had no doubt that the combination of the two Societies would have satisfactory and practical results in the promotion of a national patriotic feeling amongst colonists of all classes . . .'  
Observer 24 November 1888
p. 25 cols. C,D. 'The Federal Council Bill.' [House of Assembly agreed to second reading of the Bill. 'We regret the decision . . . The question is not one of federation or no federation, for nearly everyone is agreed that this is to be sought after. It is as to whether the scheme to which the Assembly has now given its adhesion is likely to facilitate the attainment of the desired end.']
Observer 1 December 1888
p. 34 col. E; p. 35 col. A. 'Australian Natives' Association.' 'The inaugural demonstration to celebrate the establishment of the Australian Natives' Association in this colony was held in the Town Hall on Friday evening . . . [It] was essentially a national and patriotic Association, having for its object the welfare and prosperity of Australia . . . fostering a national spirit amongst Australians, and the means by which it was to be done was by discussion and social gatherings.' [Amalgamation of Australian Natives' Association and Australian National Union.]
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Observer 26 January 1889
p. 25 cols. A,B. 'The Federal Council.' 'The Federal Council will meet in Hobart about the end of this month . . . There will be two additional representatives - the Premier and Attorney-General of this colony . . . The adhesion of South Australia is merely tentative, as the Act authorizing it is to continue in force only until the end of next year. This circumstance reveals pretty plainly the spirit in which this colony has joined . . . It is not because as a people we have much faith in the scheme of federation embodied in the Imperial Act of 1885 . . . It [our Legislature] has yielded to the earnest solicitations of the other colonies which have been in the federation from the first, because it does not wish to appear to be antagonistic to union . . .'
Observer 16 February 1889
p. 25 cols. B,C. 'A Federal Council and a Federal Parliament.' 'The tone of the debates at Hobart was not inspiriting. The difficulties in the way of complete Parliamentary Federation were pointed out and emphasized . . .'
p. 30 col. C. 'Return of Federal Council delegates.' 'Mr Playford said it was understood among the delegates that they would do all in their power to induce the mother colony to be represented at the earliest possible moment'; '. . . the first session at which South Australia was represented.'  
Observer 4 May 1889
p. 32 col. E. 'The Hawkesbury Bridge.' 'The Hawkesbury Bridge, which forms the last link required to complete the chain of railways connecting Adelaide with Brisbane and Sydney and Brisbane was opened today . . . The Premier presided, and made the principal speech of the afternoon, proposing "United Australia." To this toast the visitors of the other colonies responded.'
Observer 19 October 1889
p. 24 cols. D,E; p. 25 col. A. Editorial. 'Defence of the Colonies.' [Major-General Edwards' Defence Report.] ' . . . his advice to Australians is - "Organise. Federate . . . Divided as you are; acting independently of each other as you insist upon doing, you run the risk of falling an easy prey to the invader." '
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p. 33 cols. D,E; p. 34 cols. A-C. 'The military forces of the Australian Colonies.' [Report by General Edwards on a proposed organization of the Military Forces of the Australian Colonies; suggestions include federation of the military forces; a common Defence Act; railways should have uniform gauge.]  
Observer 26 October 1889
p. 40 cols. C,D. 'Australian federation.' 'He [Sir Henry Parkes] was convinced that a Federal Government or Federal Parliament was the only machinery which would be able to legislate for Australian interests as opposed to the interests of one colony . . .'
Observer 23 November 1889
p. 24 col. E; p. 25 cols. A,B. Editorial. 'The federation of the Colonies.' 'Sir Henry Parkes, inspired by a conviction that the prominence of late given to the necessity for a federal system of Australian defence afforded an admirable basis for joint action, has pressed upon the Australian Colonies the propriety of appointing bona-fide representatives to discuss federation in all its bearings and pave the way for creating an Australian Dominion on the lines of the Dominion of Canada . . . But the truth is that the South Australian Parliament was cajoled into joining [the Federal Council] under promises which have not been fulfilled . . that poor little weakling - the Federal Council . . .'
Observer 30 November 1889
p. 37 col. C. 'Federation of Australia.' [Sir Henry Parkes' speech at Leichardt. 'He emphasized his opinion regarding the insufficiency of the Federal Council machinery . . . A resolution was passed to the effect that the time had arrived for the establishment of a Federal Government for all the Australasian Colonies.']
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Observer 7 December 1889
p. 28 col. D,E. 'Federation.' [House of Assembly discussion about federation: 'At all events she [South Australia] would not pin herself to the apron-strings of Sir Henry Parkes.']
Observer 14 December 1889
p. 23 cols. A,B. Editorial. 'The New federation movement.' 'Sir Henry Parkes has found time to visit Albury and to make a long speech in explanation and defence of his federation proposals.'
p. 36 col. D. Editorial. 'The federation of Australia.' [Decision soon to be made re date and place of Federal Conference; difficulty in solving tariffs question; 'Sir Henry [Parkes] also said that he regarded the claims of Albury to the position of the federal city of the future as being equal to any place within his knowledge.']