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History of Adelaide Through Street Names

Streets Named on the 23rd May, 1837


King William Street H12
William IV, the third son of King George III, was born at Buckingham Palace in 1765. He entered the navy in 1779 and served in America and the West Indies. In 1818 he married Adelaide, eldest daughter of the Duke of Saxe-Coburg. The couple had two daughters but they both died in infancy. In 1830, on the death of his brother George IV, William became King. At the same time, Lord Howick (Earl Grey - of the famous tea), and the Whigs came to power. In 1831 Grey asked the King to dissolve Parliament so that the Whigs could secure a larger majority in the House of Commons, their aim being to carry their proposal to increase the number of people who could vote in elections. This action eventually led to the passage of the Parliamentary Reform Act on the 7th June 1832.
Immediately after this Act was passed, the founders and supporters of South Australia, who had made two previous attempts to found the Colony, commenced a third and successful attempt.
Charles Mann described him as 'William the reformer', and later said that if King William had still been alive, that SA would have had Representative Government by 1842.
King William Street is not crossed by any other as no one is allowed to cross the path of a monarch.

Lefevre Terrace J4
James Shaw Lefevre was Under Secretary to Edward Stanley, Colonial Secretary for The Colonies in 1834 when the third attempt of the founders to obtain a parliamentary sanction for their plan commenced. Lefevre assisted Whitmore, Torrens and Gouger by advising them on how to make their plan acceptable to the British Government.
As one of the ten Colonisation Commissioners appointed for SA, Lefevre assisted Torrens and Hutt to set up the Rules and Regulations for the disposal of public lands.

Mackinnon Parade K6
Colonel William A. Mackinnon MP was a member of the National Colonisation Society of 1830. In 1835 he was appointed a Colonisation Commissioner and was even proposed as a Governor of SA for his strong support of the Colony.

Mann Terrace N4
A pre-eminent promoter of the founding principles of SA was Charles Mann, appointed first Advocate-General and Crown Solicitor. He arrived at Holdfast Bay (Glenelg) on the Coromandel on the 18th January 1837. As Advocate-General, Mann was one of the five members of the Executive Council of Government, but due to his late arrival, he was not present at the Old Gum Tree when our Government was Constituted on the 28th December 1836.
Mann supported Resident Commissioner Fisher and Colonel Light in the dispute over the site of the capital city in opposition to Governor Hindmarsh. He supported at all times the instructions of the Colonisation Commissioners and was eventually suspended by Hindmarsh; reinstated by the Colonial Office and then suspended again by Governor Gawler. He became legal counsel to the new Municipal Corporation of Adelaide in 1840 and served the colony in many other ways until his death in 1860 at the age of 60 years. The life and influence of Charles Mann, a staunch republican and chartist, deserves more study by South Australian historians.

Melbourne Street J6
Named after 2nd Viscount Melbourne, William Lamb. Lamb served as Britain's Home Secretary in Grey's Government of 1830 before becoming Prime Minister from July 1834 to December of that year. During this period, the South Australian Foundation Act received parliamentary sanction - 15th August 1834.
Lamb is remembered as a supporter of Parliamentary Reform. His name is also perpetuated as the capital of (Victoria), as he was an advisor to the young Queen Victoria.
(Note) Melbourne was named as the principal town of The Port Philip District (or Australia Felix) in 1835 - then part of New South Wales. The town of Melbourne had originally been called 'Hobson's Bay', and was even known in the early years as 'Glenelg' after our Lord Glenelg. The Colony of Victoria was created on the 1st July 1851.

Mills Terrace C6
After Samuel Mills, a very active member of the Colonisation Commissioners of SA. He was a Chairman of the Finance Committee.
This street is not named after John Stuart Mill, the philosopher social reformer, as has been suggested by
Catherine Helen Spence and others. A smaller street near South Terrace was later named in honour of this pioneer.

Molesworth Street D5
Sir William Molesworth 1810-1855, studied at Edinburgh and Cambridge Universities from 14 to 17 years of age. He was influenced by the religous and political ideas of Jeremy Bentham and James Mill and became involved in the campaign for Parliamentary Reform. In 1832, at the age of only 22, he became the member for East Cornwall. Two years later, Molesworth and John Stuart Mill founded the Radical journal The London Review.
He wrote influential reports condemning the system of Transportation which was finally ended in NSW and Tasmania in 1841. He also supported all movements for Colonial Self Government. Molesworth was a member of the National Colonisation Society of 1830 and became a member of the Provisional Committee of the South Australian Association in February 1834 where he fought strongly for the passage of the Foundation Act.

Morphett Street F11
Sir John Morphett, the man after whom this street was named, has been described as a "a colossal figure in the province for more than fifty years". Morphett represented 115 Preliminary Land Order holders when the vote for Colonel Light's choice of the site for Adelaide was taken in a tent at Glenelg on 10th February 1837. His vote for Light's choice won the day. In 1837 he owned one of the only two horses then in South Australia. At the first Adelaide races, held on January 12th 1838, he ran a mare called Fidget. The stewards were James Hurtle Fisher (who became his father-in-law) and Colonel Light.
Morphett was one of the four non-official members of the Legislative Council from 1843 until 1851, and Speaker until 1854. He continued his political career under Responsible Government (1857) until 1873. His house, Cummins was built on his land at Glenelg. George Strickland Kingston was the architect. Morphettville Racecourse is named after him as is Morphett Vale. These reflect his immense land holdings in South Australia as he was the first Secretary of the Secondary Towns Association which commenced several 4,000 acre Special Surveys.
Morphett street was fenced off from the public as a crossing to the park lands when the railway to Port Adelaide was built. A bitter controversy ended in the municipal authorities defying the railway management and tearing down the barricade. Thereafter gates were installed. (More on this story later) He died in November 1892 at the age of 83.

O'Connell Street H4
After Daniel O'Connell, the celebrated Irish politician. See Jeffcott Street. O'Connell in 1830 was a member of the House of Commons where he fought for prison reform, free trade, abolition of slavery and Catholic emancipation. He was prominent in the campaign for universal suffrage with William Molesworth.


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