|1897 Colonial Conference|
|Dates||24 June–8 July 1897|
|Venue(s)||Colonial Office, Whitehall|
|Cities||London, United Kingdom|
|Heads of Government||11|
(Secretary of State for the Colonies)
|Follows||1894 Colonial Conference|
|Precedes||1902 Colonial Conference|
Imperial council, imperial defence
The 1897 Colonial Conference was a conference between the Secretary of State for the Colonies and the 11 self-governing colonies of the British Empire. The conference was convened in London by Colonial Secretary Joseph Chamberlain in 1897 on the occasion of Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria. Chamberlain's intention was to draw the self-governing colonies into closer co-operation with the United Kingdom.
Delegates were sent to the conference by Canada, Newfoundland Colony, New Zealand the Australian self-governing colonies of New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia, and the South African colonies of Cape Colony and the Colony of Natal.
Chamberlain proposed the creation of a permanent Imperial Council made up of delegates from the colonies to act as an Empire-wide parliament with the power to bind the colonies on imperial matters but this was rejected by the colonies due to fears of loss of autonomy. Chamberlain also propose that colonies increase their contributions to the Royal Navy but only some colonies agreed to increase their contributions and no permanent arrangement was agreed to.
The conference was hosted by Queen Victoria, with her Colonial Secretary and the Premiers of various colonies:
|United Kingdom||Joseph Chamberlain||Secretary of State for the Colonies (Chairman)|
|The Earl of Selborne||Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies|
|Sir John Bramston||Assistant Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies|
|Canada||Sir Wilfrid Laurier||Prime Minister|
|Cape Colony||Sir John Gordon Sprigg||Prime Minister|
|Colony of Natal||Sir Harry Escombe||Prime Minister|
|Newfoundland Colony||Sir William Whiteway||Premier|
|New South Wales||Sir George Reid||Premier|
|New Zealand||Richard Seddon||Prime Minister|
|Queensland||Sir Hugh Nelson||Premier|
|South Australia||Charles Kingston||Premier|
|Tasmania||Sir Edward Braddon||Premier|
|Victoria||Sir George Turner||Premier|
|Western Australia||Sir John Forrest||Premier|
- Historical dictionary of European imperialism. Greenwood Publishing Group. 1991. pp. 136–137. ISBN 0313262578.
- "Colonial Conference". Sydney Mail. news.google.com. 10 July 1897. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Historical dictionary of European imperialism. Greenwood Publishing Group. 1991. p. 138. ISBN 0313262578. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- Crowley, F.K. (2000). Big John Forrest, 1847-1918: A Founding Father of the Commonwealth of Australia. University of Western Australia Press. p. 187. ISBN 9781876268442. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- "Proceedings of a conference between the secretary of state for the colonies and the premiers of the self-governing colonies at the Colonial Office, London, June and July 1897 [microform]". archive.org. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
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