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Greville, Henrietta (1861 - 1964)

MBE

Born
9 October 1861
Dunedin, New Zealand
Died
29 August 1964
Lakemba, New South Wales, Australia
Occupation
Activist and Trade unionist
Alternative Names
  • Collins, Henrietta (former name, 3 August 1881 - 30 July 1894)
  • Wyse, Henrietta (maiden name, 9 October 1861 - 3 August 1881)

Summary

Henrietta Greville established her life-long involvement with the labour movement when she moved to the goldfields at West Wyalong, following the breakdown of her marriage to John Collins. Here she pegged out a claim, sold meals to the miners and helped establish a branch of the Political Labor League, as well as meeting her future husband, miner and union organizer, Hector Greville. To help support her family Greville, at times, worked as a seamstress. Later she became an organizer for the Australian Workers' Union, the Women Workers' Union, and for some time acted as its delegate at the Trades and Labor Council. As a Labor candidate, Greville was defeated for the federal seat of Wentworth in 1917 and the state seat of Vaucluse in 1927. Greville became associated with the Workers' Educational Association of New South Wales in 1914 when she joined an economics class. By 1918 she was branch secretary at Lithgow, became a member of the executive in 1919 and the first woman president in 1920. Greville was still active with the association in 1954, at the age of 94. On 1 January 1958 Henrietta Greville was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire for social welfare services in New South Wales.

Details

Events

1866
Moved with her parents Henry and Rebecca (née Hutchinson) Wyse and siblings from New Zealand to Victoria
3 August 1881
Married John Collins a jeweller at Albury Registry Office
1890s
Organiser for the Australian Workers Union
1890s
Delegate to Trades and Labor Council
1891
Joined the Labor Party
30 July 1894
Married Hector Greville a miner and union organizer
1908
Organizer for the White Workers' Union and attacked the working conditions and wages of female shirt-makers
1914
Joined the first tutorial class of the Workers' Educational Association (WEA) of New South Wales and studied economics for two years
1916 - 1917
Campaigned against conscription
1917
Stood, unsuccessfully, for the Federal electorate seat of Wentworth, representing the Women's Central Organising Committee of the Australian Labor Party
1920
First woman to be elected president of WEA
1927
Labor candidate for the New South Wales State seat of Vaucluse
1938
President of the Labor Women's Advisory Council
1940s
Worked for the Rockdale branch of the Original Old Age and Invalid Pensioners' Association
1945
Became a life-member of the Union of Australian Women
1954
Aged 94 directed a group of women studing sex hygiene for WEA
1 January 1958
Appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire for social welfare services in New South Wales

Sources used to compile this entry: A group of friends, Henrietta Greville : veteran Labor pioneer, Current Book Distributors, Sydney, 1958, 15 pp; Curthoys, B. (Barbara) and McDonald, Audrey, More Than a Hat and Glove Brigade: The Story of the Union of Australian Women, Bookpress, Sydney, 1996, 179 pp; Vinter, Mary, 'Greville, Henrietta (1861 - 1964)', in Australian Dictionary of Biography Online, Australian National University, 2006, http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A090107b.htm.

Related entries

Archival resources

Mitchell Library and Sir William Dixson Research Library, State Library of New South Wales

  • William Morrow - recordings of addresses given by Jessie Street, and interviews with Jessie Street, 1953-1960, 1953 - 1960, Z MLOH 52; Mitchell Library and Sir William Dixson Research Library, State Library of New South Wales. Details

Anne Heywood

Site-wide information and acknowledgements

National Foundation for Australian Women The University of Melbourne, eScholarship Research Centre

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