Federation of Australia

On the 1st day of January in 1901 Australia became an independent nation.

How did this happen? The British Parliament passed a rule which gave permission for each state, then known as colonies, to govern in their own right as part of the Commonwealth of Australia. Australia then became part of the kingdom with Queen Victoria as Australia's head of the state.

Federation is known as the birth of our nation. A federal system of government was created where management of the country is between central government and regional government, know as 'state' governments because it was divided between the six colonies, now known as Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia, Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory.

Federal government managed areas like, taxation, defence, overseas affairs and postal and telecommunications services.

The states managed matters that happened within their state, including police, hospitals, education and public transport.

Why did Australia federate? Before the federation of Australia, the colonies did not have enough resources to defend themselves. A lot of the colonies had talked and agreed that it would be a good idea to pool their resources to make the colonies more equal and secure, instead of relying on the British navy to guard the large coast around Australia. This was because people were afraid that the Australian colonies could come under attack from nations like Germany, France and Russia who had already colonised parts of the Pacific.

Benefits of Federation

Who was involved in the Federation of Australia? Key people involved were; Sir Henry Parkes, Thomas Playford, Alfred Deakin

Members of the Australasian Federation Conference, 1890 Back row: Andrew Inglis Clark, Captain William Russell (New Zealand), Sir Samuel Griffith, Sir Henry Parkes, Thomas Playford, Alfred Deakin, Bolton Stafford Bird, George Jenkins (Secretary to the Conference) Seated: William McMillan, Sir John Hall (New Zealand), John Macrossan, Duncan Gillies, Dr John Cockburn, Sir James Lee Steere
Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death. Victoria was born at 4.15 a.m. on 24 May 1819 at Kensington Palace in London.

17 September 1900, the Queen declared that the six colonies would be united and come under the name of Commonwealth of Australia.

Queen Victoria was named Alexandrina Victoria but she was known as Victoria. She was an only child of Edward Duke of Kent and Victoria Saxe-Coburg. Her father died when she was 1 year old and her domineering mother kept her away from her 'wicked' uncles Kings George and William.

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Grace Ford
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