Guide to the Papers of Ernest Tristam Crutchley (as filmed by the AJCP)


M1829 - M1830

National Library of Australia View Catalogue Record

Created: 2018

Collection Summary

Crutchley, Ernest Tristram
Papers of Ernest Tristram Crutchley (as filmed by the AJCP)
Date Range
1928 - 1940
Collection Number
M1829 - M1830
15 items
Language of Materials
Australian Joint Copying Project
The Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP) online portal was created with the assistance of the Australian Public Service Modernisation Fund, 2017-2020. The National Library of Australia gratefully acknowledges the contribution of the other foundation AJCP partners, the State Library of New South Wales and The National Archives of the UK, and all other organisations which supported the work of the AJCP, the world's most extensive collaborative copying project, operating from 1948 to 1997.


Scope and Contents

Includes: typescript of unfinished autobiography including account of Crutchley's early life and his appointment in 1928 as the British Government Representative for Migration in Australia; Diaries 1928-40 containing a detailed record of Crutchley's travels in Australia; meetings with public figures; social life in Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne; negotiations with British settlers; impressions of Australian politics; reflections on migration; British-Australian relations; and the 'bodyline' controversy; correspondence 1931-35.

Conditions Governing Access

Available for Access.

Conditions Governing Use

Many of the records digitised as part of the AJCP are still in copyright. Readers wishing to publish or reproduce documents should seek permission, in the first instance, from the owner of the original material.

Preferred Citation

Acknowledgement of use of this material should refer to the location of the original material and to the Australian Joint Copying Project.

Items from this collection should include references to the location of the original material and to the AJCP nla.obj number, which serves as the online identifier for the digital copy.

Example: M Series: Journal of Capt. James Cook, 18 February 1770, British Library Add. MS 27885 (AJCP ref:

Archival History

Filmed at the private residence of Mr Brooke Crutchley, England, as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project, 1983 (AJCP Reels: M1829-M1830). Original microfilm digitised as part of the NLA AJCP Online Delivery Project, 2017-2020.

Existence and Location of Originals

The private residence of Mr Brooke Crutchley. Cambridge, England.

Existence and Location of Copies

The original AJCP microfilm of the records filmed from this collection is available at the National Library of Australia [] as well as other institutions holding AJCP microfilm.

Finding-aid Notes

This finding aid is a revised online version of the original finding aid prepared by the Australian Joint Copying Project (AJCP), published by the National Library of Australia in 2018. The original AJCP finding aids were unpublished typescripts or photocopies available from libraries that held copies of the original microfilm.

Dates used in this finding aid refer to the date range of the records selected for filming rather than to the date range of the Series or Files.


Australia; Australia: politics and government; Canberra, Australian Capital Territory; Cricket; Crutchley, Ernest T.; Emigration and immigration; Great Britain: relations with colonies; Melbourne, Victoria; Sydney, New South Wales: visits to


Originally cited in Australian Joint Copying Project Handbook. Part 8: Miscellaneous (M) Series. Third Edition, published 1998. Entry 118, p43.

Biographical / Historical

Ernest Tristram Crutchley (1878-1940). Assistant Surveyor, G.P.O., 1909-14; served in Royal Engineers 1914-19; served on staff of Chief Secretary for Ireland, Dublin, 1921-22; Principal, Irish Office, 1922-25; Finance Officer, Oversea Settlement Committee, 1925-28; British Government Representative for Migration in Australia, 1928-31; Representative in Australia of H.N. Government in the United Kingdom, 1932-35; Public Relations Officer, G.P.O., 1935-39; Assistant Under-Secretary of State, Dominions Office, 1936-37; Member of Oversea Settlement Board, 1937-39; Public Relations Officer, Ministry of Home Security, 1939-40.

Item Descriptions

Series I. Autobiography

Typescript of unfinished autobiography covering Crutchley's early life, his work with the Oversea Settlement Office, his appointment in 1928 as the British Government Representative for Migration in Australia, the voyage to Australia, impressions of Perth and Melbourne, and first meetings with Australian politicians and officials. (23pp)

The volume also contains Crutchley's diary for the period 1 January- 3 April 1929.

Series II. Diaries of E.T. Crutchley, 1928 - 1940

9 items

The diaries provide a detailed record of Crutchley's working and social life, his conversations with many of the leading figures in Australian and British political and official circles, his opinions and attitudes, and anecdotes that he had heard. The entries in the early diaries tend to be briefer than those in the later diaries. For some days there are no entries and there are a few longer gaps, the largest being from July 1939 to August 1940.

The Australian diaries were mostly written in Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney, but they also record visits to Perth, Adelaide, Launceston, Jervis Bay, Newcastle, Brisbane and other Australian towns and a brief visit to New Zealand. There is a great deal of material in the early diaries on British migration to Australia and this is a recurring subject in all the later diaries. Among the subjects covered in the Australian diaries are the voyage to Australia in 1928, visits to farms of British settlers, negotiations with the Victorian settlers, the 1929, 1931 and 1934 Federal elections, the 1931 Premiers Conference, Crutchley's visit to England in 1932 and his appointment as U.K. Government Representative in Australia, the Ottawa Conference and its consequences for Australia, the dismissal of J. Lang, the New Guard in N.S.W., the 'bodyline' controversy, child emigration and the Fairbridge Society, group settlements in Western Australia, the Western Australian secession movement, appointments of Governors, Crutchley's relations with the Governor-General, reform of the N.S.W. Legislative Council, 1933 Victorian Settlers Conference, Crutchley's adventures in floods at Mallacoota in January 1934, development of northern Australia, the mission of J.G. Latham to the Far East, visits of N. MacDonald and Duke of Gloucester to Australia in 1934, repatriation of British migrants, Japanese trade delegation, negotiations concerning meat agreement, honours, social and cultural life in Canberra, religious divisions in Australia, books, Australian attitudes and behaviour, the question of Crutchley's successor and the appointment of G. Whiskard as first British High Commissioner, Crutchley's appointment as Public Relations Officer at the G.P.O. and his departure from Australia in September 1935.

The later diaries record Crutchley's life in London, his work for the G.P.O., his secondment to the Dominions Office in 1936-37, and his work for the Ministry of Home Security. There are many references to the abdication of King Edward VIII, European affairs, and the impact of the War on London, and also to the visits of Australian politicians and friends, meetings of the Oversea Settlement Board, visits to the Royal Empire Society and the Commonwealth Institute, the 1936 Empire Settlement Bill, child emigration to Australia, and news from Australia.

The diaries contain references to a very large number of individuals, including C.L.A. Abbott, Sir James Barrett, Daisy Bates, T.R. Bavin, Lord Birdwood, L. Bracegirdle, S.M. Bruce, Maie Casey, R.G. Casey, H. Clapp, P. Collier, C.S. Daley, R. Dalton, H. Darling, J. Duncan-Hughes, Sir Henry Galway, Sir Philip Game, Sir Robert Garran, H. Gepp, Lord Gowrie, H.S. Gullett, W. Hankinson, Sir Edward Harding, C.A.S. Hawker, W.M. Hughes, Lord Huntingfield, Sir Isaac Isaacs, Lady Isaacs, Sir George Julius, Sir Robert Knox, C. Lane-Poole, J. Lang, Sir John Latham, J.A. Lyons, Enid Lyons, M. MacDonald, S.G. McParlane, A.J. McLachlan, E. Machtig, R.G. Menzies, Sir James Kitchell, Sir Keith Murdoch, Sir Otto Niemeyer, K. Officer, E. Page, Sir George Pearce, Sir Lennon Raws, J.H. Scullin, Lord Somers, B. Stevens, Lord Stonehaven, E.G. Theodore, J.H. Thomas, S. Ure Smith, G. Whiskard, Sir Leslie Wilson.

Printed diaries, August 1928 - December 1928 (File)

Printed diaries, April 1929 - December 1929 (File)

Printed diaries, January 1930 - December 1930 (File)

Printed diaries, January 1931 - December 1931 (File)

Exercise books, February 1932 - June 1933 (File)

Exercise books, June 1933 - December 1934 (File)

Exercise books, January 1935 - December 1936 (File)

Exercise books, December 1936 - November 1938 (File)

Exercise books, November 1938 - September 1940 (File)

Series III. Miscellaneous Papers, 1931 - 1935

5 items

Cutting concerning Crutchley taken from Smith's Weekly, 1931 (File (iv))

E.T. Crutchley. Canberra: a private appreciation. Typescript. (4pp), 1931 (File (i))

Papers concerning the tour of Australia by the English Cricket Team, 1932 - 1933 (File (ii))

Extracts from Crutchley's diary, letters and cuttings concerning the tour and Crutchley's involvement in the controversy concerning bodyline bowling. They include correspondence with the Manager of the Team, P.H. Warner (February 1933) and a letter from Crutchley to O. Thompson, 6 March 1933.

Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1931 - 1935 (File (iii))

J. Daly (Canberra) to Crutchley, 12 March 1931 (Item)
6 items

Thanks for note re departure from Government.

Mary Masson (Melbourne) to Crutchley, 24 December 1931 (Item)

Crutchley's departure for England; his encouragement to New Settlers League.

C.A.S. Hawker (Melbourne) to Crutchley, 8 April 1932 (Item)

British preparations for Ottawa Conference; Australian concessions. (incomplete)

Sir Isaac Isaacs (Canberra) to Crutchley, 26 December 1932 (Item)

Thanks for congratulations on election to Bench of Inner Temple.

W.K. Hancock (Adelaide) to Crutchley, 8 November 1933 (Item)

Although described individually, this document was originally microfilmed with a page from another document. The last page of the document described can be found at the beginning of nla.obj-742825923.

Thanks for couplets about L. Curtis; Hancock's departure for England.

Sir Philip Game (Sydney) to Crutchley, 11 January [1935] (Item)

Departure from Australia; wishes he could discuss political situation.

Crutchley to W. Teeling, 1 July 1935 (Item)

Crutchley's visit to Group Settlements; lack of response to proposal for development of northern Australia by chartered companies.

Miscellaneous Papers