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The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Smith, Hon. Louis Lawrence

< The Dictionary of Australasian Biography

Smith, Hon. Louis Lawrence, M.L.A., L.S.A. (Lond.), is the son of the late E. T. Smith, one of the most remarkable entrepreneurs of recent times and formerly lessee of Cremorne and Her Majesty's Theatre. He was born in London in 1830, and educated at St. Saviour's Grammar School and at the Ecole de Médecine at Paris, where in 1848 he had some exciting adventures during the revolution which deposed Louis Philippe. Subsequently Mr. Smith studied medicine in London, where he won honours at the Westminster Hospital, and having taken his diploma and practised for a while in London, emigrated to Victoria, where, after a brief experience on the goldfields, he settled down to practice in Melbourne. In 1859 he was asked to stand for the Assembly for South Bourke in the Liberal interest, and having consented, was returned and several times re-elected. Incensed by some remarks from one of the Ministry of the day which he regarded as personally insulting, Mr. Smith boxed his assailant's ears, and immediately resigning his seat, was promptly re-elected, despite his breach of the decorum of Parliament. Having opposed the Darling grant, he was defeated for South Bourke, and became member for Richmond, where he experienced a like fate through his hostility to Mr. Francis's scheme for reforming Parliament on the lines of the Norwegian Constitution. In May 1877 he was elected for Richmond at the head of the poll as an adherent of the Berry Government. More recently he has represented Mornington, for which he was re-elected in April 1892. Mr. Smith has been prominent for many years past as a supporter of the turf and a promoter of exhibitions, and has devoted a large amount of time and attention to the exploitation of the trade in colonial wines. From July 1881 to March 1883 Mr. Smith was a member of the O'Loghlen Ministry, but without portfolio.