Hamilton Goold-Adams

Sir Hamilton John Goold-Adams, GCMG, CB (27 June 1858 – 12 April 1920) was an Irish soldier and colonial administrator, who served as Governor of Queensland from 1915 to 1920.

Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams

12th Governor of Queensland
In office
15 March 1915  3 February 1920
MonarchKing George V
Preceded bySir William MacGregor
Succeeded bySir Matthew Nathan
Personal details
Born(1858-06-27)27 June 1858
County Cork, Ireland
Died12 April 1920(1920-04-12) (aged 61)
Cape Town, Cape Province, South Africa
Spouse(s)Elsie Riordon
ChildrenRichard John Moreton Goold-Adams
Elizabeth Mary Goold-Adams
Military service
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Branch/serviceBritish Army
Battles/warsSecond Boer War
AwardsKnight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George
Companion of the Order of the Bath
Mentioned in Despatches

Early life

Born in the town of Jamesbrook in County Cork, Ireland, fourth son of Richard Wallis Goold-Adams (1802–73) and Mary Sarah Goold-Adams (d. 1899), daughter of Sir William Wrixon-Becher.

Military career

Hamilton Goold-Adams was a cadet in the training ship HMS Conway until he decided to join the British Army and was commissioned in the Royal Scots Regiment, serving principally in southern Africa, where he achieved the rank of captain in 1885 and major in 1895, leading many expeditions into the interior. During the Second Boer War he served first as Resident Commissioner in Bechuanaland, Afterwards as commander of the Town Guard during the latter half of the Siege of Mafeking where he was twice Mentioned in Despatches.

Colonial administrator and governor

Goold-Adams was appointed Deputy Commissioner of the Orange River Colony under the Administrator Sir Alfred Milner (later Lord Milner) in January 1901. Following the end of hostilities in May 1902, the colony formally received a new constitution on 23 June, and Goold-Adams was appointed Lieutenant-Governor,[1][2] serving as such until 1907, when he became governor.

Goold-Adams was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1902, and was advanced to Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1907.

Goold-Adams returned to England in 1911, where he married a Canadian named Elsie Riordon on 4 July. Later that year he was appointed British High Commissioner to Cyprus. In 1914 he was made Governor of Queensland, and arrived in Brisbane just before the election of Queensland's first majority Labor government, under Premier T. J. Ryan. He occasionally disapproved of Labor's policies and majority appointments to the Legislative Council of Queensland.

Returning to England after his retirement, Goold-Adams contracted pleurisy on board ship, and died in Cape Town, South Africa in 1920.

Personal Life

Upon his return from South Africa on July 4, 1911, he married Elsie Riordan of Montreal, Canada; they had two children.


  1. "Latest intelligence – Orange River Colony". The Times (36804). London. 26 June 1902. p. 3.
  2. "No. 27459". The London Gazette. 29 July 1902. p. 4834.
Government offices
Preceded by
William Palmer, 2nd Earl of Selborne
Governor of the Orange River Colony
Succeeded by
Office abolished
Preceded by
Sir William MacGregor
Governor of Queensland
Succeeded by
Sir Matthew Nathan
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