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Issue #1602      July 17, 2013

Help with biography required

Jan Richardson is writing a biography of Don McLeod and needs our help.

The archives have contradictory information about McLeod and the Communist Party, and Jan is trying to get this right in the biography.

Can you answer any of the following questions or put her in touch with Party veterans who may be able to help?

  1. How long was Don McLeod a member of the CPA?
  2. Did Don McLeod ever stay with Frank Hardy in Sydney?
  3. Don McLeod was a consultative delegate at a CPA State Conference in WA. He is reported to have criticised JB Miles who responded positively while other delegates were incensed by an attack on Miles. When was this conference held and does anyone have more information about it?
  4. There is a report that the CPA asked Don McLeod to recruit Aborigines and he refused. Is this true? Does anyone have any more information about this?
  5. When and why did Don McLeod leave the CPA?

If you can help, please contact Jan Richardson at janrich@bigpond.com or Hannah Middleton at peace@mira.net

On 1 May 1946 Indigenous pastoral workers walked off the job by pre-arrangement. The decision to declare the strike had been made through a series of meetings and word circulated throughout the region by the distribution of calendars, marking 1 May 1946 as the day to stop work.

Mass arrests were made, and many of the strike leaders were incarcerated: Strike leaders Dooley Bin Bin, Clancy McKenna and Don McLeod were arrested and sentenced to three months hard labour.

Desert people with McLeod continued working in mining under a new corporate structure called Nomads. Ultimately, McLeod’s Nomads Pty Ltd acquired Strelley Station and still maintains its independence.   

Next article – Packer’s second stage win for super-parasite casino

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