The Society aims to bring together scholars, lawyers and the general public interested in Legal History. It sponsors lectures, competitions, research projects and a variety of seminars and discussion groups. Sir Francis Forbes was the first Chief Justice of New South Wales and worked hard to establish the legal framework for the new colony. There are a number of sources for his life including:
C.H. Currey, “Forbes, Sir Francis (1784-1841)”, Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, first published in 1966. Curry’s Sir Francis Forbes; the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New South Wales (1968) is a fine study of the colonial chief justice.
One Nineteenth Century account is: David Forbes, Memoir of Sir Francis Forbes, Chief Justice of New South Wales, Sydney: Henry Solomon, 1875.
Oil Painting of Sir Francis Forbes by an unknown artist.
Membership Information and forms for the 2015/2016 year are available in the Membership page in the above list.
Sir Francis Forbes
A candelabra belonging to Francis Forbes is on display in the AMAZE Gallery at the State Library of New South Wales. The candelabra was given to Sir Francis Forbes, the first Chief Justice of New South Wales ‘in token of respect and esteem for his public and private virtues’ by ‘the colonists of New South Wales’ in 1836. The curator, Anni Turnbull, has written a blog post about the candelabra, available by cutting and pasting the following address:
David Jackson AM QC offers a special perspective on the life and work of former Queensland Chief Justice, Sir Harry Gibbs during this lecture.
18 March 2016, Banco Court. Supreme Courts Brisbane.
Selden 2016_Lecture 1_Sir Harry Gibbs
The 2016 Australian Legal History Essay Competition
Entrants in the 2016 Australian Legal History Essay Competition are invited to address any question of their own choice on “Australian legal history” or to address one of four sample questions proposed by the Society.
Details of the competition categories and submission details as well as the sample questions are available on the following link: 2016 Essay Conditions and Guidelines
Essays submitted by email should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Essays submitted by post should be addressed to: The Secretary, The Francis Society for Australian Legal History, C/- NSW Bar Association, Lower Ground Floor, Selborne Chambers, 174 Phillip Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000. Essays submitted by hand should be delivered to that address.
Judging for the People: A Social History of the Supreme Court in Victoria 1841 – 2016 is an exhibition, conference and supported by a book which all mark 175 Years of the Supreme Court in Victoria.
The conference on 8th - 9th of April and exhibition will bring together stories about the judges of the court, the media’s relationship with the court, the developing role of the court and the rule of law, key court decisions, the changing nature of jurisdictions, legal education, and the buildings and libraries that have featured throughout its history.
Details concerning the Conference and publication are by copying and pasting the following address:
Dr John Hamilton QC’s book, Adjudication on the Gold Fields is to be launched by Bathurst CJ, in the Banco Court, on 8 March 2016 at 5:30 pm.
Invitation to Launch of Adjudication on the Gold Fields
John is a former judge of the Supreme Court of NSW and an active member of both the Francis Forbes Society for Australian Legal History and the Australian and New Zealand Law and History Society.
The Society is pleased to announce the results of the 2015 Essay Competition in the following link. Congratulations to all winners and entrants for the very high standard of entries.
RESULTS NOTIFICATION FOR THE AUSTRALIAN LEGAL HISTORY ESSAY COMPETITION 2015.25.1.16.FINAL
Mark Tedeschi QC, Senior Crown Prosecutor, has built on his previous success with the book Eugenia and continued writing about some significant trials in Australian Legal History with the publication of Kidnapped, the story of the Graeme Thorne kidnapping and death in July 1960. It’s a fascinating story and a landmark case. Further details are available at: ‘Kidnapped’ by Mark Tedeschi QC
The Newsletter of the Francis Forbes Society
The Forbes Flyer is designed to be an informative reference source for members of the Forbes Society. It contains information about events of historical significance, articles about legal research and details of future lectures and other activities the Forbes Society.
The latest edition, No.32 (Spring/Summer 2016), is available here . No 32 Spring Summer 2015-2016
- The Forbes Flyer Issue No 32 features:· History reports itself
· The 2015 Forbes Lecture in Sydney
· Results of the 2015-2016 Australian Legal History Essay Competition
· The Holt Prize
· The Civil Procedure legislation 10 years on
· Constitution patriotism in Adelaide
· The Block and the land of coincidence
· New books
· Spring & Summer Quarters