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Papers of Sir John Ferguson, 1796-1947 [manuscript]
Bib ID 6103260
Format ManuscriptManuscript
Ferguson, John Alexander, 1881-1969
Access Conditions Available for research. Not for loan. 
Description [1796-1947] 
0.03 m. (1 folder) 

MS 3626 comprises a small group of papers mostly relating to Scottish political reformer, Thomas Muir. The papers include a letter by John W. Earnshaw to Mr Justice Ferguson, dated 29 May 1947, enclosing an English translation of a Spanish document written in Mexico in 1796, relating to Thomas Muir in North America. A photostat of the original document held in the Archives of the Indies, Seville, is included in the collection together with a typewritten transcript on which the translation is based.

Other papers in the collection include a letter from A. Cousins to Mr Justice Ferguson, 13 December 1945, refering to the family history, “Michael Hindmarsh of Alne Bank”, a copy of which Cousins intends sending to Ferguson. It also recounts how J. Russell King, general manager of the Producers’ Co-operative Distributing Society, suggested Cousins compile a history of the Illawarra. The postscript refers to Cousins’ long-standing friend, J. Stuart Thom. The letter is accompanied by a 6-page typescript (with corrections) headed “Presbyterian” on the Reverend John Tait and other pioneer clergy who served in the different branches of the Presbyterian Church in the Shoalhaven and Illawarra districts of New South Wales (1 folder).


Academic, judge, book collector, bibliographer and benefactor. John Alexander Ferguson was born in Invercargill, New Zealand in 1881 and moved to Sydney with his father in 1894. He attended the University of Sydney and later gained the George Wigram Allen scholarship for the most distinguished Arts graduate entering the Law School. Ferguson was admitted to the New South Wales Bar in 1905. He came to specialise in industrial law and was the first lecturer in industrial law at Sydney University. In 1935 he was appointed a judge of the New South Wales Industrial Commission.

As a young man, Ferguson developed an interest in Australian history thus complementing other interests he held in bibliography and book collecting. These areas of interest were embodied in Ferguson's major work, The bibliography of Australia, 1784-1900, published in seven volumes between 1941 and 1969. His collection of early Australiana, having expanded to include manuscripts, maps, printed ephemera and graphic materials, was progressively transferred to the National Library from 1938. The Ferguson Room at the National Library is named in his honour. Ferguson died in Sydney in 1969.


Manuscript reference no.: MS 3626.

Folder labelled "Thomas Muir, J. Stuart Thom".

Associated materials: Papers of the Ferguson family, 1906-1999 MS Acc14.095.

Associated materials: Letters relating to Sir John Ferguson, 1940-1943.

Some items in Spanish.

Source of Acquisition Sir John Ferguson Collection. 
Subjects Ferguson, John Alexander, 1881-1969 -- Archives.  |  Earnshaw, John -- Correspondence.  |  Cousins, Arthur, 1866-1960 -- Correspondence.  |  Muir, Thomas, 1765-1799.  |  Hindmarsh family.  |  Bibliographers -- Australia -- Archives.  |  Revolutionaries -- Scotland.  |  Illawarra (N.S.W.) -- Church history.
Time Coverage 1792-1947 
Occupation Bibliographers.  |  Book collectors.  |  Benefactors.  |  Judges.  |  Academics.
Other authors/contributors Earnshaw, John  |  Cousins, Arthur, 1866-1960  |  Spain. Archivo General de Indias


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