First woman elected to parliament in Tasmania
Margaret McIntyre’s aspirations as a community worker and politician were fostered in her childhood by her mother Caroline Martha David. The atmosphere of the campaign for social reform and women’s further education undertaken by her mother, led Margaret into an academic life.
Margaret also became actively involved in community work, her aim being to help women develop a sense of self worth.
In Launceston, after the war, Margaret McIntyre became involved in many community activities, these included:
- State Chief Commissioner for the Girl Guides
- First northern President of the Women Graduates’ Association
- Vice-President of the Y.W.C.A. and the Anzac Hostel Women’s League of Remembrance
- Member of the Board of the Queen Victoria Hospital
- The Community Association Council
- The A.B.C. Advisory Committee
- President and producer of the Launceston Players
- Established a youth drama group
- Involved in the Launceston Progressive Education Group and the establishment of Brooks Community School
In 1947 she was awarded an OBE. She became the first woman in the Tasmanian Parliament to represent Cornwall in the Legislative Council (1948). Unfortunately she died in an air crash three months after being elected whilst coming back from a National Council of Women Conference.
Radi, Heather (ed), 200 Australian Women: A Redress Anthology, Broadway, NSW: Women’s Redress Press Inc., (n.d.)
Tasmaniana Collection, State Library of Tasmania