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Peter Dodds McCormick Plaque : April 2014
Peter Dodds McCormick Plaque : April 2014

Photographs supplied by Peter F Williams

Plaque dedicated to Peter Dodds McCormick in recognition of his devotion and work for the church. Peter Dodds McCormick was the author and composer of "Advance Australia Fair."

Born in Scotland, Peter McCormick arrived in Sydney in 1855. McCormick was heavily involved in the Scottish pesbyterian Church and was active in a number of community and benevolent organisations. He began his involvement with Sydney's St Stephen's Church as a stonemason, working on the now demolished Phillip Street Church (where Martin Place now stands). The Rev Hugh Darling was so impressed with his singing on the job he asked him to join the choir. McCormick's musical ability led him to becoming the precentor of the Presbyterian Church of New South Wales, which gave him the opportunity to conduct very large massed choirs. He was also convenor of the Presbyterian Church Assembly's Committee on Psalmody.

McCormick spent most of his life employed by the New South Wales Education Department. In 1863 he was appointed teacher-in charge of at St Mary's National School and went on to teach at the Presbyterian denominational school in the Sydney suburb of Woolloomooloo in 1867. He then moved to Dowling Plunkett Street Public School in 1878 where he remained until 1885.

In 1878 McCormick wrote ‘Advance Australia Fair’ under the pen name ‘Amicus’ (friend in Latin) after attending a concert which featured national anthems where he had been dismayed that ‘there was not one note for Australia’. In 1901 at the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia, it was sung by a choir of 10,000. In 1974, almost 100 years after its composition, ‘Advance Australia Fair’ became Australia’s national anthem.

Location

Address:44 Margaret Street, Scots Presbyterian Church, Sydney , 2000
State:NSW
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.864995
Long: 151.20588
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Religion
Link: http://adb.anu.edu.au/

Dedication

Front Inscription

To the Memory of
PETER DODDS McCORMICK
Author and Composer of
"ADVANCE AUSTRALIA FAIR"
IN RECOGNITION OF
HIS DEVOTION TO
AND WORK FOR
HIS CHURCH

Source: MA, ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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