03 – Alexander Henry and Esther Hicks – References

Still Under Construction

Alexander Henry Hicks seems to have followed in the footsteps of his father Henry Thomas Hicks – very involved in local politics as an Alderman & Mayor on Northern Illawarra Council.

However, whilst Henry had been a farmer, Alex had become a Coal Miner, and would rise from being Corrimal Miners Lodge Delegate to become the President Of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association (1904-1908), which had formed in 1902. Alex was probably a hard union man of the mining unions, and certainly “got a lot of press” in the Newspapers during some of those turbulent times of the late 19th Century and early 20th Century.

  • 1864 – Birth of Mary Esther (or Esther Mary?) Armstrong
  • 1866 – Birth of Alexander Henry Hicks, second son of Henry Thomas Hicks and Mary Ann (McKenzie)
  • 1884 – Life partnership commences for  Alexander Henry Hicks and Mary Esther Armstrong
  • 1888 – Birth of son, Henry Thomas Hicks
  • 1891 – Birth of daughter Ida Hicks
  • 1893 – Birth of daughter Mary Elsie Hicks – source – NSW BDM 39251/1893
  • ? – Birth of son George Alexander Hicks
  • 1897 – 03 -03 – The Evening News – Alexander Hicks – President of Corrimal Miners Union Balgownie – Letter to the Illawarra Mercury
  • 1898 – 01 – 26 – Sydney Morning Herald – Nominations for Municipal Councils – Alexander Hicks nominated for position of Auditor of the North Illawarra Council
  • 1898 – 01 – 27 – The Evening News – Nominations for Municipal Councils – Alexander Hicks nominated for position of Auditor on the North Illawarra Council
  • 1899 – 02 -01 – Sydney Morning Herald – Nominations for Municipal Councils – Alexander Hicks nominated for position of Alderman on North Illawarra Council in Central Ward
  • 1899 – 02 – 01 – The Evening News – Nominations for Municipal Councils – Alexander Hicks nominated for position of Alderman on North Illawarra Council in Central Ward
  • 1899 – 02 – 13 – The Evening News – Alexander Hicks elected as Alderman for Central Ward of North Illawarra Council, and Jacob Carlos Jones elected unopposed as Alderman for Northern Ward of North Illawarra Council
  • 1900 – Birth of son William Hector Hicks – source – NSW BDM 28009/1900
  • 1900 – 01 – 19 – Sydney Morning Herald – Conference between Illawarra Coal Mine Owners and Delegates from the Miners including Alexander Hicks as delegate from Corrimal Mine
  • 1900 – 03 – 21 – Sydney Morning Herald – Election of Officers for Illawarra District Miners Association – Alexander Hicks of Corrimal Miners unsuccessful in standing for position of Auditor
  • 1900 – 04 – 19 – Sydney Morning Herald – Southern Collieries – Annual Meeting of Illawarra Council Delegates Board at the Terminus Hotel in Wollongong – Alexander Hicks attended as delegate for Corrimal
  • 1900 – 06 – 06 – The Evening News – accident to a  7 year old boy from Balgownie – fears for loss of sight – possibly Alexander’s son ?
  • 1900 – 10 – 16 – Sydney Morning Herald – Southern Collieries – Quarterly Meeting of Illawarra Council Delegates Board at the Terminus Hotel in Wollongong – Alexander Hicks attended as delegate for Corrimal – met from 11am – 6pm – key agenda item – Agitation for Advance in Hewing Rates
  • 1900 – 11 – 17  – Sydney Morning Herald – Southern Collieries – meeting where nominations received for 3 members to sit on a joint committee with mine owners on Hewing Rates and other matters incidental to the Southern Coal Industry – Alexander Hicks was present
  • 1900 – 11 – 24 – Sydney Morning Herald – Corrimal Miners Lodge Delegate Alexander Hicks instructed to bring the question of a special Saturday Pay Train to the  District Council meeting the following day – seeking support of miners of the district
  • 1900 – 11 – 27 – Sydney Morning Herald – Miners District Council meeting – attended by Corrimal Miners Lodge Delegate Alexander Hicks – covered Shovel and Pillar rates and a resolution passed protesting against the NSW Legislative Council failing to support the Compulsory Arbitration Bill and requesting the Premier to urge the NSW LC to support it and “give effect to the expressed will of the people”; request for cheap train each Pay Saturday; holiday at mines from December 21 till January 6.
  • 1901 – 08 – 06 – Kiama Independent & Shoalhaven Advertiser – heated meeting of North Illawarra Council debating Mayor wanting provide drain pipes for individual property owners in a haphazard fashion – Alderman Alexander Hicks critical of the haphazard process and asked why not provide them with timber and paint as well
  • 1901 – 08 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald – Balgownie School of Arts Annual Meeting – Alexander Hicks elected to the Committee
  • 1901 – 11 – 12 – Kiama Independent & Shoalhaven Advertiser – 4 Aldermen absent from Special Meeting of North Illawarra Council including Alderman Alexander Hicks
  • 1902 – 01 – 20 – Sydney Morning Herald – retiring North Illawarra Aldermen at the 1902 Municipal Election includes Alderman Alexander Hicks
  • 1902 – 05 – 10 – Sydney Morning Herald – nominations for Trustees of Towradgi Park received including Alexander Hicks and H Spinks
  • 1902 – 08 – 09 – Sydney Morning Herald – meeting in Balgownie for financial support of families of miners killed in the Mt Kembla 1902 Mine Disaster – Alexander Hicks elected to the Committee
  • 1902 – 10 – 10 – Sydney Morning Herald – subscriptions/donations to the Mt Kembla 1902 Mining Disaster Appeal – including Alexander Hicks
  • 1902 – 12 – 16 – Sydney Morning Herald – Religious Instruction in Public Schools – Church of England Synod Committee – Exam Results – Wollongong Rural Deanery Prize – Henry Hicks of Balgownie
  • 1903 – 01 -16 – The Evening News – Alexander Hicks, Check Weighman at Corrimal Colliery gave evidence to the Mt Kembla 1902 Mine Disaster Inquiry – note a contemporary paper by Henry Lee of the University of Wollongong on the Disaster and the Inquiry’s Findings is worth a readIllawarra Unity – Journal of the Illawarra Branch of The Australian Society for the Study of Labour History “A Reflection on the Mt Kembla Disaster – Volume 3 Issue 1 Article 8 – 1-1- 2003
  • 1903 – 11 – 30 – Sydney Morning Herald – Illawarra Miners Association (Illawarra Colliery Employees Association?) President T Drury resigned and Alexander Hicks appointed as interim President till an election can be held
  • 1904 – 03 – 10 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks elected as President, D Ritchie re-elected as Secretary, and T R Morgan Treasurer
  • 1904 – 03 – 30 – Sydney Morning Herald – Illawarra Colliery Employees Association Gala – the Luncheon was presided over by the Association President, Alexander Hicks
  • 1904 – 04 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks elected as President, D Ritchie Secretary and T R Morgan Treasurer, S Bird & S Byce as Auditors, J Sweeney & H Marsh as District Scrutineers, W Jobson as District Check Inspector
  • 1904 – 06 – 13 – Sydney Morning Herald – Special Delegates Meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees, chaired by Association President  Alexander Hicks, JB Nicholson, MLA, was brought to heel over his perceived reluctance to sign the Labour Caucus Solidarity Pledge. He was asked by the meeting  whether he should contest the next elections as a Solidarity candidate – Nicholson said he had not refused to sign it any time, and would do so if the majority of his constituents wished him to do so; delegates were unanimously in favour of him doing so and he did; they committed to offering him financial support – the Solidarity Pledge for Caucus Solidarity for Elected Parliamentary Representatives was a key issue for the ALP heading into the Federal Elections of 1904, and had surfaced in 1894, continuing to this day.
  • 1904 – 09 – 20 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks  President of the Colliery Employees Association presided over a special meeting of Labour Party representatives, where they decided to canvas alternative candidates to oppose sitting Federal Illawarra MP George Fuller, for the federal seat of Illawarra who would better represent the interests of labour. Later Fuller would become Sir George Warburton Fuller, Conservative  Premier of NSW in 1922-1925.
  • 1904 – 09 – 21 – Kiama Reporter and Illawarra Journal – more detail on the Labour Party meeting to canvas candidates against sitting conservative Illawarra Federal MP, George Fuller – the meeting presided over by Alexander Hicks, President of the Colliery Employees Association
  • 1904 – 09 – 23 – Robertson Advocate – more on the meeting of the Labour Party meeting about opposing George Fuller, MHR – Alexander Hick, President of the Colliery Employees Association in the chair
  • 1904 – 12 – 03 – Sydney Morning Herald – special meeting of the Illawarra Miners Employees Association chaired by Association President Alexander Hicks – in support of the whole Coledale Mine workforce which had been given notice, and the Company’s intention on using machines so that the men would be “coal-getters” rather than miners
  • 1904 – 12 – 07 – Australian Town & Country Journal – more on the special meeting of the Illawarra Miners Employees Association about the Coledale Mine sackings which was chaired by Association President Alexander Hicks
  • 1904 – 12 – 30 – Sydney Morning Herald – Coledale Mine Manager Thomas Cater is sued by an Inspector of the Factories and Shops Act of breaching the 1902 Award of last on – first off during sackings at the mine. Case conducted by Illawarra Colliery Employees Association Secretary D Ritchie with evidence given by Association President Alexander Hicks, Treasure T R Morgan and several others
  • 1905 – 01 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – annual meeting of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association – Alexander Hicks elected as President, D Ritchie Secretary and T R Morgan Treasurer, S Bird & S Byce as Auditors, J Sweeney & H Marsh as District Scrutineers, W Jobson as District Chief Inspector
  • 1905 – 02 – 01 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks to recontest position of Alderman for Central Ward of North Illawarra Council
  • 1905 – o2 – 21 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alderman Alexander Hicks elected Mayor of North Illawarra Council
  • 1905 – 04 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald – Quarterly meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees Association chaired by Association President Alexander Hicks – significant issues dealt with including inexperienced miners being employed at the coal face, concerns about the Arbitration System operations
  • 1905 – 07 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald – Quarterly meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees Association chaired by Association President Alexander Hicks – dealing with an alleged black list of miners in Association Positions preventing them from getting jobs in Mines
  • 1905 – 08 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – Monument erected in memory of Major H O  McCabe andW  McMurray who died in the rescue during the Mt Kembla Mine Disaster of 1902 where Alexander Hicks, Illawarra Miners’ Association President and Mayor of North Illawarra Council, spoke
  • 1905 – 10 -16 – Sydney Morning Herald – Quarterly Meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees Association at Tattersalls Hotel chaired Assocation President Alexander Hicks – dealing with Balmain dispute, Arbitration Bill, Woonona Lodge now defunct, negotiations with colliery management regarding rates
  • 1905 – 10 – 17 – Sydney Morning Herald – Rules for Proposed Illawarra District Friendly Societies Association covering from Bulli to Dapto – Alexander Hicks President
  • 1905 – 11 – 20 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks re-nominates as President of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association
  • 1906 – 01 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald — annual meeting of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association – Alexander Hicks elected as President, D Ritchie Secretary and T R Morgan Treasurer, S Bird & S Byce as Auditors, J Sweeney & H Marsh as District Scrutineers, W Jobson as District Chief Inspector
  • 1906 – 02 – 26 – Sydney Morning Herald – Annual Meeting of the Wollongong Friendly Societies Association – elected Alexander Hicks as President, Messrs Farrell & Murphy as Vice Presidents, T S Wearn as Treasurer, J A Ford as Secretary
  • 1906 – 02 – 28 – Australian Town & Country Journal – Annual Meeting of the Wollongong Friendly Societies Association – elected Alexander Hicks as President, Messrs Farrell & Murphy as Vice Presidents, T S Wearn as Treasurer, J A Ford as Secretary
  • 1906 – 06 -04 – Sydney Morning Herald – David Ritchie, Secretary of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association, resigns his position, nominations received including by Alexander Hicks, who resigns from his position as Association President to contest the election
  • 1906 -06 – 13 – Sydney Morning Herald – farewell function for David Ritchie who is leaving the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association to move to Richmond River (to take up dairying), and Alexander Hicks, President of the Association is in the Chair
  • 1906 – 08 – 06 – Sydney Morning Herald – presumably Alexander Hicks was unsuccessful in the election for Secretary of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association in February 1906, as he is again Association President and reported as just returned from a  3 week visit to Richmond River – from another article – T R Morgan was elected Secretary
  • 1906 – 10 – 11 – Sydney Morning Herald – special meeting of delegates of Illawarra Colliery Employees Association to discuss hewing rates at South Bulli Colliery being inadequate in “hard” headings and deficient places, where less coal could be mined, and so an inadequate wage earned – some disagreement between TR Morgan (miners ) and Dr Robertson, Colliery Owners, but eventually resolved and proposed agreement sent to the board of conciliation.
  • 1906 – 10 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald – lengthy article on progress of allowance for hard headings at South Bulli, Dispute Settling Processes, progress in the coke market, and G W Fuller (anti-protectionist anti-socialist Free Trade Party – later a Liberal), and G B Holt  (Labour) seeking support in upcoming federal elections.
  • 1906 – 10 – 22 – Sydney Morning Herald – Coke Market is strong, mixed at the pits with some dissatisfaction – Illawarra Colliery Employees Association President Alexander Hicks to sort out some unfair fines imposed by individual lodges and attended Mt Pleasant Lodge to explain recent delegates meeting
  • 1906 – 11 – 12 – Sydney Morning Herald – review of the state of coal & coke markets, individual pit; meeting of Conciliation Board attended by Illawarra Colliery Employees Association representatives with Alexander Hicks present, to discuss the South Bulli situation of working in hard headings
  • 1906 – 12 – 03 – Sydney Morning Herald – upcoming Illawarra Colliery Employees Association elections covered including Alexander Hicks renominating as President, state of mines covered – how many days worked, industrial issues continue
  • 1906 – 12 – 10 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks re-elected as Illawarra Colliery Employees Association & T R Morgan as Secretary – good review of state of the individual mines and coke works – mention of upcoming Federal Election being a Wednesday and will be a holiday in the mines
  • 1907 – Life partners Alexander Hicks and Esther Armstrong marry in Sydney – NSW BDM 9346/1907
  • 1907 – 01 – 11 – Sydney Morning Herald – Annual meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees Association and Alexander Hicks, T R Morgan formally declared elected to their respective roles, Association that Secretary be nominated for NSW Coal Miners representative to the Trades Union Congress in Melbourne in February; Mt Lyell Coke Works employees on strike; lobbying for ambulance to be provided and more satisfactory way of conveying injured persons from the mines
  • 1907 – 02 – 11 – Sydney Morning Herald – coke and mines going well, some industrial disputation amongst wheelers, West Dapto mine is opening up which will relieve the depression following the closure of the Dapto Smelter; Lodge elections held and Alexander Hicks elected as Check Inspector at Corrimal Colliery
  • 1907 – 04 – 15 – Sydney Morning Herald- Quarterly meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees Association, President Alexander Hicks in the chair  – lots of industrial disputation issues and considering breaking away from the Industrial Agreement which is due to run until 1909 – not enough skips and so can’t load enough to get paid enough, recommendation that Illawarra Colliery Employees Association Secretary TR Morgan be appointed to a board to select examiners under the Coal Mines Regulation Act
  • 1907 – 06 – 13 – Sydney Morning Herald – long special meeting of delegates of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association ran from 11am till 8pm with President Alexander Hicks presiding; consideration of breaking away from the Industrial Agreement and some Colliery Managers were creating breaches of the agreement by not properly returning skips; upcoming meeting with Northern and Western Miners Associations to discuss merger of the three associations; endorsing J B Nicholson MLA as Labour Candidate for Wollongong at forthcoming state elections; action at South Clifton following death of 4 men; issue of men declining to work for 10 hours on stone at Mt Pleasant pit
  • 1907 – 06 – 24 – Sydney Morning Herald – rough seas interrupted shipping of coal which reduced production in the mines; reduced member numbers as miners seek work elsewhere; complaints about skip weights being reduced at Helensburgh when stone falls onto the skip; mergers with North and Western Associations to be discussed at Trades Hall in Sydney – Alexander Hicks to be one of the Illawarra delegates, Mr Truscott to represent Western interests
  • 1907 – 07 – 11 – Sydney Morning Herald – Illawarra Colliery Employees Assocation quarterly meeting held at Tattersalls Hotel with President Alexander Hicks in the chair – issue of supply of household coal discussed, industrial wrangling over the use of machines to cut coal and its implications for breaching the Industrial Agreement – plus regulate wages across machine men; concern at maladministration of  Miners Accident Relief Act in relation to the recent South Clifton disaster
  • 1907 – 10 – 12 – Sydney Morning Herald – Quarterly meeting of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association delegates chaired by Alexander Hicks; machine cut coal differential issues in regard to hewing rates continue, support for 8 Hour Act for Collieries; pressure on labour availability, John Stephen Kirton to start up Excelsior Colliery, Thirroul again; Coke market going well;
  • 1907 – 11 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – meeting of Illawarra Colliery Employees Assocation delegates with Illawarra Colliery owners/managers to vary the industrial agreement – attended by Alexander Hicks Association President; there had been increases in rates but still issues around hewing rates but concerns around then present high living rates; criticism by the Association of the mines for taking out contracts that are too long and so don’t allow them to take advantages of increases in selling prices;
  • 1907 – 11 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – combined meeting of Corrimal & Mt Pleasant Lodges presided over by Illawarra Colliery Employees Association President Alexander Hicks, about the proposed merger with Northern & Southern Miners Association not progressing – problems attributed to divisiveness arising from socialistic ideas of some of the Northern Miners – but need to press ahead with proposition of making a common cause – meeting supported amalgamation (note however this merger would not be achieved for a number of years)
  • 1907 – 12 – 09 – Sydney Morning Herald – Report on state of the mines markets;  Conciliation Board noted the retirement of Illawarra Collliery Employees Association officials at the next elections – including President Alexander Hicks; note at how the Southern Districts resolve disputes whereas the Northern Districts use only strike action; reference to 1907 having been a Miners Year by D A W Robertson and hoping that the Mines might have some show the following year; discussion of work on the Port Kembla harbour; mention of duplication of the south coast railway
  • 1908 – 01 – 13 – Sydney Morning Herald – covered annual meeting of 10.6.1908 with Alexander Hicks as President chairing the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association – decision taken to merge with Victorian Coalminers Assocation in order to receive the full benefit of the Federal Arbitration Act; 2 delegates to be sent to the conference of the Political Labour League and 2 representatives to the proposed Trade Union Congress in Sydney in April – Alexander Hicks was selected as one of the delegates; decided to set aside Saturday before 8 Hour Day as a gala day for members of the Association – relating to the Coal Mines Act Amendment of 1908 Section thirty-eight of the Coal-mines Act, 1908, is hereby Section 88 of Coal Mines Act is there by amended by adding to subsection one thereof the following words: ” Such overtime shall be paid at the rate of not less than time and a quarter· for all time worked in excess of the said eight hours, and shall be payable notwithstanding the provisions of any award or industrial agreement now or hereafter to be in force. Every miner employed on Sundays or holidays in or about a mine shall be entitled to be paid at the rate of one and a half times his ordinary wages.”” – Note – it was not until 1916 that all workers gained the advantage of the 8 Hour Day & in 1915 that the Miners Federation formed.
  • 1908 – 01 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks again contesting the Northern Illawarra Council elections
  • 1908 – 02 – 03 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks elected as Alderman for Middle Ward North Illawarra Council
  • 1908 – 04 – 20 – Sydney Morning Herald – at meeting of Mt Pleasant miners meeting, Alexander Hicks elected as employee representative on the Government Accident Relieft Fund.
  • 1909 – 03 – 30 – Sydney Morning Herald – Death of Alexander’s father James Hicks- Alexander mentioned as former President of the Illawarra Colliery Employees Association – but not as Mayor or Alderman of North Illawarra Council
  • 1909 – 05 – 12 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks Executor of father James Hicks (of Thirroul) will, with brother Henry Thomas Hicks Jnr
  • 1910 – 10 – 08 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alderman Alexander Hicks raising questions about the construction of the Mt Keira Deviation Road
  • 1911 – 02 – 03 – The Land – Alderman Alexander Hicks re-elected to North Illawarra Council
  • 1911 – 07  – 03 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks unsuccessful in seeking election to Southern Collieries Wages Board
  • 1913 – 12 – 06 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks appointed President of Mt Pleasant Miners Lodge
  • 1914 – 03 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks elected as President of Mt Pleasant Miners Lodge
  • 1914 – 10 – 17 – Sydney Morning Herald – marriage of Alexander Hicks’ second son George Alexander Hicks to Agnes Mary Jenner of Stanmore
  • 1914 – 10 – 31 – Sydney Morning Herald – marriage of Alexander Hicks’ second son George Alexander Hicks to Agnes Mary Jenner of Stanmore
  • 1914 – Marriage of daughter Ida H Hicks to James H Truscott – Mollie Joy was train bearer
  • 1914 – 0 3 – 14 – Sydney Morning Herald – Alexander Hicks elected Secretary of the Mount Pleasant Miners Lodge
  • 1914 – 10 – 31 – Sydney Morning Herald – marriage of George AlexanderHicks, 2nd son of Alexander and Esther Hicks of Balgownie
  • 1915 ? – Marriage of daughter Mary Elsie Hicks to Thomas Claude Bell
  • 1918 – Death of wife Mary Esther Alexander
  • 1951 – Death of son Henry Thomas Hicks in Rockdale – Source – NSW BDM 4278/1951
  • 1957 – 08  – 05 – South Coast Times –  Death of Alexander Henry Hicks, aged 90 years – available Wollongong City Library Reference Section
  • 1965  – Death of son George Alexander Hicks in Sutherland – Source – NSW BDM 30292/1965
  • 1966 – Death of daughter of Ida H Truscott (nee Hicks) in Balgownie
  • 1969 – Death of daughter Mary Elsie Bell (nee Hicks) in Bulli – Source – NSW BDM – 11808/1969
  • 1969 – Death of son William Hector Hicks in Burwood – Source – NSW BDM 39827/1969
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One Response to 03 – Alexander Henry and Esther Hicks – References

  1. Pingback: And I Thought We Were Only a Farming Family – Discovering Uncle Alex Hicks | The Hicks Family

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