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Table of Contents

Weather News


Fifty Years of Weather History
Weather Officers—25 Years Ago
The Perth RO Since 1929
Remember the Pioneers
Akeroyd the Great
Out with the Old—In with the New [Bill Gibbs / John Zillman]
Dr Bill Gibbs
Dr John Zillman
Meteorological History in the Territory
Edwin Thomas Quayle—Bureau Research Pioneer
Ninety Years Ago: Birth of the Bureau

Personal Notes



Observers and Volunteers




Contact us

Fifty Years of Weather History

No. 18 January 1958, Item 110

Prior to Federation, each of the six Australian States maintained its own combined Astronomical and Meteorological Service under a Government Astronomer, the headquarters in all cases being the capital city Observatory.

The Federal Constitution made provision, in Section 51, sub-section VIII for State Meteorological Services to be united under Commonwealth control. Astronomy was to remain the function of the States.

The Meteorological Act, No.3 of 1906, established the Commonwealth Bureau of Meteorology, but the new service did not come into operation until 1st January, 1908.

A nucleus of senior Meteorologists from all State Observatories, except Tasmania, formed the professional staff in the early stages, and during those years Meteorologists of junior rank were added, also a Physiographer.

A dwelling at the corner of Victoria and Drummond Streets, Carlton, was acquired to serve as a combined Head Office and Victorian Divisional Office. This building, named "Frosterley" had been the residence and professional rooms of Dr. Snowball, an eminent children's doctor of his time. The building, remodelled internally to some extent, and with new wings occupying space that was formerly devoted to lawns and gardens, still houses the headquarters of the Bureau and the Victorian Divisional Office.

The first Commonwealth Meteorologist was Mr. H. A. Hunt, formerly of the Sydney Observatory and his Assistant Meteorologists were R. F. G. Griffiths, Adelaide, E. T. Quayle, Melbourne, H. M. Jocelyn, Perth and E. Fowles, Brisbane. Some clerical staff from the Melbourne Observatory transferred the Bureau and the balance was recruited locally.

People in Bright Sparcs - Hunt, Henry Ambrose ; Joscelyne, Henry Maurice ; Quayle, Edwin Thomas; Snowball, William

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