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TOM PRICE. THE S. A. PREMIER. The Welsh premier, Mr. Tom Price, who is now on a visit to his native country after 25 years of colonial life, has had a very interesting career. Twenty-five years ago he left Liverpool on the emigrant ship Dundee, with his wife and infant child, a paying passenger in search of health in South Australia. He returns to his native land the first man in the State to which he emigrated, the political leader of 380,000 people. Mr. Price, who is accompanied by his wife, will be the official representative of South Australia at the Franco British Exhibition, to be opened early in May at Shepherd's Bush. He was born at Brymbo, near Wrexham, on January 19, 1852. He was the first of seven children, the father, Mr. John Price, being a stone cutter who went from Liver- pool to Brymbo to shape the stones for the national school then in course of erection. When the work was completed the father returned to Liverpool, and it was in that city that young Tom Price spent his early years. His early education was very limited and at 9 years of age he had to go out and work at his father's occupation. For 20 years he was engaged in and around Liver- pool at his trade his spare time was taken up in improving himself. He was a regular attendant at the Welsh Wesleyan Sunday School, and rose to be the Superintendent, a position which he held some time before he emigrated to the new world. He took keen interest in the literary society in connection with the chapel, and was an active worker of the Liverpool Liberal Organisation, and also of the several Temperance Societies of the city. When 31 years of age his health failed him, and consequently he decided to emi- grate. He married a Miss Lloyd, daughter of one of the circuit stewards of the Wesleyans. Soon after his arrival at Adelaide he was employed in building the parliament house, of which he is now the principal hero. He retained his deep interest in the welfare of the workers, and organised labour forces in that colony with such success that he be- came a labour candidate for Parliament in 1893, and was returned at the top of the poll for the district of Sturt. At the time Mr. Price was regarded as an extremist, but most of the views he then advanced have since been given the force of law. In 1899, Mr. Price was made the leader of the Labour Party in Parliament. They then numbered 11 in a house of 54. At that period, although a more vigorous than polished speaker, he was very effective, and on one famous occasion his eloquence secured the passing of a Factories Bill. Mr. Price, however, had his faults. He was fiery, im- petuous, and rash. Obeying the dictates of his heart rather than of his head, he would work himself into a paroxysm of wrath over some trifle, and largely on this account no one regarded him as the future Minister of the Crown. At the general election of 1905 the Labour candidates scored heavily, and when Parlia- ment met in July, the assembly was constituted as follows "Ministerial, IS Labour, 15; Liberal, 9. Thus the Liberal and Labour were in the majority, and a coalition Government was formed, with Mr. Price as Premier. To those'who knew Mr. Price as a Socialist and. extremist a few years before, the idea of his becoming Premier was preposterous. His ranting, however, was simply the exuberance of Welsh fervour, and his extremism was not really dangerous; he simply advocated with characteristic warmth the high ideals of his Party. The Premier has sobered down under the responsibility of office, but he has retained the confidence of his Labour supporters, and has won the esteem and trust of his political opponents, all of whom recognise his earnestness and sincerity. Mr. Price made his first public appearance in London on Thursday last, when he attended the great Temperance gathering at the Queen's Hall. It was here that he met Mr. Lloyd-George for the first time, and he was greatly impressed with the oratorical powers of the young Welshman who has made such a name for himself throughout all the British Dominions. Mr. Price was asked to preside during the latter portion of the meeting, and gave a short address, which was greatly valued. The first note of his voice disclosed the practised platform orator. He spoke to the farthest end of the room," as teachers of elocution are wont to advise their pupils to do. In brief, telling sentences, he described the nature of the prohibitive Jaws of his Commonwealth that Local Option there worked for the good of the people; that vested interests in licences were unknown there and that sobriety and prosperity went hand in hand. Then a suffragette intervened. "Do not touch her," demanded the Labour Premier. A woman is sacred even though she may be a suffragette." The woman remained, but the speaker administered such a lecture to her and those who acted with her at that meeting as must have made her wish she had been ejected before he spoke. "I laboured hard to get adult suffrage (men and women) through our Parliament, but it was not obtained by such means as you are pursuing. I am a Briton, and I will not be intimidated, and you may depend upon it that the British people will not be intimi- dated either. I will tell you more. Your sisters in South Australia do not approve of what you are doing. You are on the wrong line," he shouted fiercely, and the remainder of his sentence was indistinguishable in the applause that followed. :11= Mr. Price will to-night (Saturday) address the members of the Welsh Literary Societies of London, at Castle Street Chapel, at 8 p.m., and will be a guest of the Welsh Club at a dinner on Tuesday evening next.


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