Cemetery Residents - P
PEIRSON, Arthur Thomas (1867-1933): Arthur Peirson was born in Newcastle-on Tyne, England, in 1867 and arrived in Queensland as a teenager in 1885. He worked as a clerk in the prison service, rising to become the chief clerk of prisons by 1904. He was also appointed as superintendent at Boggo Road gaol, a position he held until his death in 1933. During this time he also served as Comptroller-General (1919-26). In addition to all this, he was a Major in the Queensland Military Forces and received the Victorian Decoration for long and distinguished service. He married Florence Drury in September 1897, and they had their only child, a boy named Duncan, in 1900. Peirson died one afternoon in May 1933 after a long illness. His funeral was well attended, with many government dignitaries paying their respects, including the Lieutenant-Governor.
PHILIP, Sinclair Smith (1855-1916), local resident (PDF article)
Douglas PRICE was born into a Quaker family in Birmingham in 1874. At the age of 18, he joined the Anglican Church and later studied at Durham University and was ordained in the Church. He arrived in Brisbane in 1903 and in 1905 became the rector of All Saints church in Wickham Terrace.
Douglas became well known for weekly public lectures on subjects such as poetry, philosophy, literature and history, often given dressed in University gown and hood. He came into conflict with the archbishop, St Clair Donaldson, over his increasingly unorthodox theology and in 1911 the archbishop asked him to resign. The parishioners objected to this and petitioned the archbishop to withdraw his request, without success.
Price left for Europe after resigning, but later in the same year he returned to Brisbane at the request of his many followers. He established a Progressive Christianity or Modernist Group and held well attended services. In his remaining years, Douglas wrote three novels. These books contain much of his philosophy and they received positive reviews at the time.
In 1916, Douglas was found dead at home by a friend who had come to visit. Whilst the newspapers reported that he had died in his sleep, his death certificate states that he died from a severed brachial or upper arm artery and it’s hard to escape the conclusion that he suicided.
His tombstone was erected by the women of the Modernist Society. Without his leadership, the movement in Brisbane slowly died. A yearly Douglas Price Memorial Lecture was held for some years from 1920 and was presented by distinguished academics. One of his obituaries stated that had Douglas Price lived anywhere but Australia, he would have had a worldwide reputation, but he is now all but forgotten.
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