William Wand (Bishopsbourne)

William Wand (Bishopsbourne)

Name: William Wand (Bishopsbourne)

Epoch: Early 20th Century (the \'Long Early Twentieth Century\')

Grouping Field: Humanities (Ideas Formatted as Ideas) and Social Science (Models)

Location Grouping: Individual\'s Residential Location

Map Coordinates: 27°28\'01.7\"S 153°00\'13.4\"E

Years At Location: 1934-1943

One Historical Setting: Most Rev. John Wand, Bishopsbourne, 233 Milton Road, Milton (1934)

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William Wand was the Anglican Archbishop of Brisbane from 1934 to 1943. Wand organised the move of St Francis’s Theological College from Nundah to the Bishopsbourne property in Milton, a move which was unpopular at the time.

Impact On Brisbane Society

William Wand had been Fellow and Dean of Oriel College, Oxford, and university lecturer in church history. His public perception, according to Felix Arnott, was being aloof and something of an intellectual snob. John Moses has argued that it is an unfair assessment of Wand’s priesthood and his contribution to Brisbane Society. As a member of the University of Queensland senate, Wand worked to promote biblical studies. He was early supporter of the post-1945 ecumenical movement. Wand was a conventional Anglican clergyman, in terms of local church politics, with close ties to the Brisbane conservative establishment. However, for the times his scholarship did put Wand beyond local conventionality. In a pamphlet, Has Britain Let Us Down? Wand defended British war effort and policy, at the very time the Federal Parliament was debating a more independent foreign policy stance. In the field of Church history, Wand wrote forty books, among them a History of the Modern Church (1930), History of the Early Church (1937), White of Carpentaria (1949), and Anglicanism in History and Today (1961).

The entry here goes to a larger research project and a larger theme for the Brisbane Thinkers Project. Why did not Wand’s global discourse dislodge the inertia of local conventionality? The project here believes that the answer is in the way character falsely excuses behaviour within the literary-political devise of the ‘Queensland character’.  See entry on David Garland. Research is ongoing.


F. R. Arnott, ‘Wand, John William Charles (1885–1977)’, Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/wand-john-william-charles-8976/text15795, published first in hardcopy 1990, accessed online 3 January 2020.

Kidd, Alexander Philip. The Brisbane Episcopate of William Wand,1934-1943, The University of Queensland, Department of History, M.A. Thesis, 1991.

Moses, John. Email Conservation, 30 January 2020.

Image Citation

Archbishop John William Charles Wand. Archive: John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, 4688, [Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=38714642]