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Walter Lee


Walter Lee (Parliament of Tasmania)

Walter Henry Lee (1874–1963), wheelwright, farmer and politician, was born at Longford. After leaving school, he went into his father's wheelwright business. He was the member for Wilmot in the House of Assembly, 1909–46, for non-Labor parties, first as an Anti-Socialist, then a Liberal, and later a Nationalist. He held many parliamentary positions, and was three times Premier: his record first term 1916–1922, in 1923 and 1934. Lee was hampered by post-war economic difficulties such as low-level manufacturing, severe inflation and a large deficit which the promotion of new industries, hydro-electric power and the popular soldier settlement scheme were unable to counteract. He was known as an excellent debater – particularly in his ability to ridicule the opposition. He lost his seat in 1946.

Further reading: ADB 10.

Wendy Rimon