Oral History

The Library has an active Oral History program, recording stories and memoirs from members of the legal profession for the benefit of future historians.  The audio recordings and transcripts are stored in the Library collection and are accessible to scholars per the Conditions of Use requested by the interviewees.

To access any of these interviews please contact us.

Oral History

  • The Honourable Brian Ambrose QC

    Recorded interview with The Honourable Brian Ambrose QC, interviewed by The Honourable James B Thomas AM QC in 2004.

    Brian Ambrose was born in 1935.  On 18 December 1958, Ambrose was admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland and commenced a period of 22 years in practice at the Bar in Brisbane, taking silk on 31 January 1980.  He was appointed a Judge of the District Court of Queensland from 1981-1985, and Judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland from 1985 - 2003.  He retired September 11 2003.

    In this interview, he discusses his life on the Bar and the bench.

     

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  • Sir Dormer G Andrews

    Recorded interview with Sir Dormer Andrews, interviewed by The Honourable John H Byrne AO RDF in 2004.

    Sir Dormer Andrews was born in 1919.  His legal studies were interrupted by military service in 1940.  He served as a flying officer in the Royal Australian Air Force and was shot down in 1942 whilst flying over El Alamein resulting in the loss of his left arm and his capture as a prisoner of war.  On his release in 1943 Sir Dormer Andrews returned to his University studies with a Bachelor of Laws in 1947.  He was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland that same year and was appointed a Judge of the District Court of Queensland in 1959 until 1971.  During this time he also served as Chairman of the District Court from 1965-1971.  He was a Judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland from 1971-1982,  Senior Puisne judge from 1982-1985, and Chief Justice of Queensland 1985-1989.  He died 28 July 2004.

    In this interview, Sir Dormer Andrews discusses his life and career.

     

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  • Mr Brian Baxter

    Recorded interview with Brian Baxter, interviewed by Mr Raoul Giudes in 2005.

    Brian Baxter was admitted to practice in 1966.  He became Senior partner at Ruddy Tomlins and Baxter, located in the  Burdekin region of Queensland.

    In this interview, Baxter speaks about his legal practice in the Burdekin region of Queensland.

     

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  • Mr John Biggs

    Recorded interview with John Biggs, interviewed by Mr Ian Muil and Mr John O'Keeffe in 2002.

    John Biggs was born in 1933 and was admitted as partner at TW Biggs & Biggs on 1 May 1959.  He is now retired.

    In this interview, Biggs speaks about his life, his family, and the legal firm TW Biggs & Biggs.

     

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  • Mr Robert Bougoure

    Recorded interview with Robert Bougoure, interviewed by Mr Gordon Dean in 2008.

    Mr Robert Bougoure served as Chief Magistrate of Queensland.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Sir Francis Gerard Brennan AC KBE

    Interview with Sir Gerard Brennan AC KBE, interviewed by Mr John Gallagher QC in 2002.

    Sir Gerard Brennan AC KBE was born in 1928.  He graduated from the University of Queensland with a Bachelor of Applied Science and Law and was admitted to the Queensland Bar in 1951, taking silk in 1965.  He was appointed Australian Industrial Court judge from 1976-1981, ACT Supreme Court additional judge from 1976-1981, Administrative Appeals Tribunal president from 1976-1979 and Federal Court of Australia judge from 1977-1981.  Brennan was appointed a judge of the High court of Australia in 1981 and Chief Justice in 1995, where he served until his retirement in 1998. 

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and his career.

     

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  • Mr Norman Brown

    Recorded interview with Mr Norman Brown, interviewed by Mr Gordon Dean in 2010.

    Mr Norman Brown practiced as a solicitor in Townsville.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Sir Walter B Campbell AC QC

    Recorded interview with Sir Walter Campbell AC QC by Dr Michael White QC in 1999.

    The Honourable Sir Walter Campbell was born in 1921.  In 1948, following military service, he was admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland and he took silk in 1960.  He was a Judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland from 1967 - 1982 and Chief Justice of Queensland from 1982 - 1985.  He was Governor of Queensland from 1985 - 1992.  Sir Walter Campbell died in 2004.

    In this interview, Sir Walter speaks about his early life, his family, his career as a Barrister, Judge and Governor of Queensland, and his service in World War II.

     

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  • The Honourable William Carter QC

    Recorded interview with The Honourable William Carter QC, interviewed by The Honourable Glen N Williams AO, Mr Aladin Rahemtula OAM, Mr Conrad Lohe, and Mr John O'Keeffe in 2009.

    William J Carter QC was born in 1930.  His early University studies in commerce and dentistry were interrupted when he entered Banyo Seminar from 1949-1952.  He recommenced his studies, this time in law, and graduated from the University of Queensland in 1959 and was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland that same year.  He took silk in 1978.  He was appointed a Judge of the District Court of Queensland from 1980-1983, and a Judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland from 1983-1990.

    In this interview, he reflects on his family, childhood and legal career.

     

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  • Mr Patrick Collins

    Recorded interview with Mr Patrick Collins, interviewed by Mr Ian Muil in 2003.

    Mr Patrick Collins was a Brisbane barrister and served on the Queensland Law Society Executive. Prior to entering the legal profession, Collins served on the Police Force.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • The Honourable Peter Connolly CBE CSI QC

    Recorded interview with The Honourable Peter Connolly CBE CSI QC interviewed by Mrs Donna O'Reilly SC in 2000.

    The Honourable Peter Connolly CBE CSI QC was born in 1920.  He interrupted his studies at the University of Queensland to undertake military service.  He returned to the University of Queensland and graduated in 1948 and was admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland the following year.  He took silk in 1963.  He held a number of professional appointments, including President of the Bar Association of Queensland, Australian Bar Association, the Law Council of Australia, and as a member of the Supreme Court Library Committee.  He was appointed a Judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1977, a position he held until his retirement in 1990.  Connolly died in 2009.

    In this interview, he speaks about his military service, legal career and work as a Judge.

     

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  • Mr Peter Crouch CBE

    Interview with Mr Peter Crouch CBE, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe and Mr Ian Muil. The interview is undated.

    Peter Crouch CBE spent much of his legal career at the firm Crouch & Lyndon, which was founded by his father in 1894.  Crouch was President of the Queensland Law Society 1972-1974.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and legal career.

     

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  • Mr Stan Deer

    Recorded interview with Mr Stan Deer, interviewed by Mr Gordon Dean in 2007.

    Mr Stan Deer was born in 1939 and served as Chief Magistrate of Queensland from 1988-1999.

    In this interview, he discusses his life and career.

     

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  • The Honourable Douglas P Drummond

    Recorded interview with the Honourable Douglas P Drummond, interviewed by The Honourable James B Thomas AM QC in 2010.

    The Honourable Douglas Drummond was a judge of the Federal Court of Australia from 1991 - 2003.  His legal career spanned almost 40 years and included being President of the Bar Associaiton of Queensland.  On his retirement in 2003, he took the position of Commissioner on the Crime and Misconduct Commission.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Mr William Fairweather

    Interview with Mr William Fairweather, interviewed by Mr Gordon Dean in 2008.

    William Fairweather was born in 1927 and practiced in Northern Queensland.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Dr John Forbes

    Recorded interview with Dr John Forbes, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe in 2008.

    Dr John Forbes was admitted to the New South Wales Bar in 1959 and then later in Queensland following an associateship to Mr Justice McTiernan of the High Court.  He had a long career in the Law Faculty of the University of Queensland from 1969-1999 and has since become an expert on the law of native title.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

  • Mr John Francis

    Recorded interview with Mr John Francis, interviewed by Mr Raoul Giudes in 2005.

    Mr John Francis was articled in 1951 and commenced practice in Ayr in 1956.  He joined the firm Connolly Suthers & Walker in 1974.

    In this interview, he speaks about his family's involvement in the law, his practice as a solicitor and his involvement in North Queensland community life.

     

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  • Mr Alex Freeleagus AO CBE RFD

    Recorded interview with Mr Alex Freeleagus AO CBE RFD, interviewed by The Honourable Tom F Shepherdson in 2005.

    Mr Alex Freeleagus AO CBE RFD was born in 1928.  Freeleagus was a lawyer at Henderson Lahey and was later senior partner of Clayton Utz.  He assumed position of Honorary Consul of Greece in Queensland in 1957.  He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 1995 for his service to the Greek Community.  He died on 3rd June 2005.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life, his legal career and his military service.

     

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  • Sir Harry T Gibbs PC GCMG AC KBE QC

    Recorded interview with Sir Harry Gibbs, interviewed by The Honourable Kevin W Ryan CBD RFD, The Honourable Brian Ambrose QC, Mr David Jackson QC, and Dr Michael White QC in 1995 and 2000.

    Sir Harry Gibbs was born in 1917.  He graduated from the Univeristy of Queensland with a Bachelor of Laws (Honours I) in 1939 and was admitted to the Bar that same year.  His practice was interrupted by military service.  Following the war he was returned to practice law and took silk in 1957.  He served as a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland from 1961-1967, and from 1963-1967 he was Chair of the Supreme Court Library Committee.  He served on the Federal Court from 1967 until 1970, when he joined the High Court of Australia.  In 1981 Gibbs was appointed Chief Justice of the High Court.  He retired in 1987.  Gibbs continued to be active in the legal community until his death in 2005.

    In Interview 1 he speaks about his early life, notable cases in his career at the Bar, his appointment to the Supreme Court and the legal profession.  In Interview 2 he speaks about his days as a student and his early work at the Bar.  In Interview 3 he reminisces about former colleagues in the legal profession, court appearances and working conditions at the Bar.

     

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  • Mr Brian Halligan

    Recorded interview with Mr Brian Halligan, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe in 2008.

    Mr Brian Halligan commenced law at the Univeristy of Queensland but his studies were put on hold for military service.  He served as an air gunner in the Middle East and was then a prisoner of war.  He completed his studies and practiced as a solicitor in Brisbane.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and his career.

     

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  • Mr Cedric Hampson AO RFD QC

    Recorded interview with Mr Cedric Hampson AO RFD QC, interviewed by Mr John Gallagher QC in 2005 and 2010.

    Mr Cedric Hampson AO RFD QC was born in 1933.  He was admitted as barrister 1957 and took silk in 1971.  Hampson held a number of professional appointments, including the position of President of the Queensland Bar Association from 1978-1981 and 1996-1996.

    In this interview, he speaks about his practice at the Bar and his involvement with professional organisations.

     

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  • Mr Neville Harper

    Recorded interview with Mr Neville Harper, interviewed by Mr Bernard Yorke and Mr Aladin Rahemtula OAM.

    Mr Neville Harper was born in 1926.  He served on the Royal Australian Navy as a sub-lieutenant from 1945-1947.  He held many positions within the National Party before being admitted as Minister for Justice and Attorney-General for Queensland on 19 August 1983 until 1 December 1986.  He moved to Primary Industries in 1986 and then Land Management in 1989.  Harper became Shadow Attorney-General in 1989 and retired in 1992 when his seat of Auburn was abolished.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life, his political career and his role as Attorney-General.

     

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  • Mr Edward Lennon QC

    Recorded interview with Mr Edward Lennon QC, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe and Mr Aladin Rahemtula OAM in 2005 and 2007.

    Mr Edward Lennon QC was a Brisbane Barrister.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Mr Paul Martinez

    Recorded interview with Mr Paul Martinez, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe and Mr Aladin Rahemtula in 2005.

    Mr Paul Martinez was born in 1946.  In 1973 he became partner at Wilson, Ryan and Grose.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life, career and family.

     

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  • The Honourable Martin Moynihan AO

    Recorded interview with The Honourable Martin Moynihan AO, interviewed by The Honourable Margaret White AO in 2009.

    The Honourable Martin Moynihan AO was born in 1941.  He graduated from the University of Queensland in 1965 with a Bachelor of Laws and was admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland that same year.  He spent 19 years on the Bar and took silk in 1980.  Moynihan was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1984 where he served until his appointment to Senior Judge Administrator of the Supreme Court in 1991, a position he held until his retirement in 2007.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and legal career.

     

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  • Mr Gerry Murphy AM

    Recorded interview with Mr Gerry Murphy AM, interviewed by Mr Ian Muil and Mr John O'Keeffe in 2003.

    Gerry Murphy was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland.  He was Senior Partner of MurphySchmidt law firm.  Thoughout his career Murphy held a number of professional appointments, including Chairman of Queensland Law Society Accident Compensation Committee and Chairman of the Common Law Rights Committee of the Law Council of Australia.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Mr Thomas Parslow RFD ED QC

    Recorded interview with Mr Thomas Parslow RFD ED QC, interviewed by The Honourable Garry S Forno QC and Mr Conrad Lohe in 2008.

    Mr Thomas Parslow RFD ED QC served in WW2 and rose to the position of Brigadier General.  Post-war, as part of his resettlement, he studied law at the Univeristy of Queensland and was admitted as a Barrister.  He went on to become the most senior Barrister on the Roll (1972) and eventually Crown Solicitor for Queensland. He died in 2009.

    In this interview he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Mr Howarth 'Tony' E Peterson AO CBE

    Recorded interview with Howarth 'Tony' Peterson AO CBE, interviewed by Dr Jeff Mann, Mr John O'Keeffe, Mr Ian Muil, and Dr Denver Beanland in 2001, 2002 and 2008.

    Howarth 'Tony' Peterson AO CBE graduated from the Univeristy of Queensland in 1949 with a Bachelor of Laws.  He commenced practice as a solicitor and was involved in a number of professional activities throughout his career, including President of the Queensland Law Society from 1976-78.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • The Honourable Cecil W Pincus QC

    Recorded interview with The Honourable Cecil W Pincus QC, interviewed by The Honourable Margaret White AO in 2005.

    The Honourable Cecil W Pincus QC was born in 1935 and graduated from the University of Queensland with a Bachelor of Laws (Honours 1) in 1959.  He was admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland the same year and spent almost 26 years at the Bar, taking silk in 1974.  While at the Bar, Pincus was involved in a number of professional activities, holding presidential positions at the Bar Association of Queensland and the Law Council of Australia.  In 1968 and from 1978-85 Pincus was a member of the Supreme Court Library Committee and from 1978-81 was a chairperson of the Supreme Court Library Collection Sub-committee.  Pincus was appointed a judge of the Federal Court of Australia and the Supreme Court of the Australian Capital in 1985.  In 1991 Pincus was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland and one of the inaugural judges of appeal, a position he held until his retirement in 2001.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • The Honourable Eric Charles Ernest Pratt QC

    Interview recorded with The Honourable ECE Pratt QC, interviewed by Judge Anthony Healy QC in 2006.

    The Honourable ECE Pratt QC was born in 1931 and served as a Judge of the District Court from 1982-2001.

    In this interview, he speaks about his legal career and work in Papua New Guinea.

     

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  • Mr Graham Roberts OAM

    Recorded interview with Mr Graham Roberts OAM, interviewed by Mr Raoul Giudes in 2003 and 2010.

    Mr Graham Roberts OAM served in WW2 with the RAF as a Bomber.  He was captured in Denmark and spent three years as a Prisoner of War.  Upon release, Roberts entered the legal profession and spent 44 years as a partner in the firm of Roberts Leu & North.  He retired in 1991.

    In this interview, he speaks about his military service and legal career.

     

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  • The Honourable John P Shanahan AO RFD

    Recorded interview with The Honourable JP Shanahan AO RFD, interviewed by Judge Anthony Healy QC in 2006.

    The Honourable JP Shanahan AO RFD was born in 1929.  He left school after Junior and studied at night while working full time.  He served in the Australian Army Legal Reserve from 1949-1984 and was awarded and ED and RFD for his service.  Shanahan was admitted to the bar in 1951 and was appointed as a judge of the District Court in 1972 following a short period as an acting judge.  Shanahan was the first resident Judge of the District Court of Queensland in Rockhampton.  He later served as an Acting Justice of the Supreme Court of Papua New Guinea (1973) and an Acting Justice of the Supreme Court of Queensland (1991 and 1992) and as a judge of the Planning and Environment Court.  Shanahan retired in 1999 and died in 2012.

    In this interview, Shanahan discusses his life and legal career.

     

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  • The Honourable Tom Shepherdson QC

    Recorded interview with The Honourable Tom Shepherdson QC, interviewed by Mr Aladin Rahemtula OAM in 2004.

    The Honourable Tom Shepherdson QC was born in 1930 and undertook a period of articles of clerkship to William Hamilton Hart of the Brisbane firm Flower & Hart from 1948-1953.  He was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1953.  While practising, he completed a law degree at the University of Queensland, graduating in 1965.  The following year he was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland.  Shepherdson spent 15 years at the Bar, taking silk in 1980.  In 1982, Shepherdson was appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland.  He served as chairman of the Supreme Court Library Committee from 1983-87.  He retired in 2000.

    In this interview, he speaks about his early life, his legal practice and his work as a Judge of the Supreme Court.

     

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  • Mr Des Sturgess QC

    Recorded interview with Mr Des Sturgess QC, interviewed by The Honourable Thomas F Shepherson QC in 2001.

    Mr Des Sturgess QC graduated from The University of Queensland with a Bachelor of Laws in 1952 and was admitted into practice that same year.  He established himself a reputation as the best defence counsel at the Queensland Bar and in 1985 he was appointed as the first Director of Public Prosectuions for Queensland, a position he held until his retirement in 1990.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and practice at the Bar.

     

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  • Mr John Wadley

    Recorded interview with Mr John Wadley, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe and Mr Aladin Rahemtula OAM in 2002.

    Mr Johhn Wadley was born in 1930 and following high school education he was articled to his father.  He quickly qualified as a solicitor.  In 1982 Wadley was elected as president of the Queensland Law Society.  He retired in 1990 at age 60 and died in 2011.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and career.

     

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  • Mr Hal Westaway

    Recorded interview with Mr Hal Westaway, interviewed by Mr John O'Keeffe and Mr Aladin Rahemtula OAM in 2005.

    Mr Hal Westaway practiced as a solicitor at the legal firm MacDonnells in Cairns.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and legal career.

     

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  • The Honourable Glenn Williams AO

    Recorded interview with The Honourable Glenn Williams AO, interviewed by The Honourable Margaret White AO in 2011.

    The Honourable Glen Williams AO was born in 1938.  He graduated from the University of Queensland in 1962 with a Bachelor of Laws (Honours I).  He served as associate to Mr Justice Gibbs of the Supreme Court of Queensland and was admitted as a barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1962.  He spent 20 years at the Bar, taking silk in 1978.  Following a term as an acting judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland, Williams was appointed to a permanent position in late 1982.  He served as a judge of the Court of Appeal of the Solomon Islands and as president of the Industrial Court of Queensland.  In 2000, Williams was appointed a judge of appeal.  He retired from court in 2008.

    In this interview, he speaks about his life and legal career.

     

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