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Biographical entry Smith, William J.P. (? - 1961)

12 March 1961


William Smith was Raw Materials Superintendent at Commonwealth Fertilisers & Chemicals Limited during the mid 1900s. He was a foundation member of Royal Australian Chemical Institute and was made a life member of the Society of Chemical Industry of Victoria in 1957.


At the age of 14, William J. P. Smith began work as a laboratory assistant with the chemical company Cuming, Smith & Company (Port Melbourne). He then went on to study chemistry at the Royal Melbourne Technical College where he excelled and became the youngest person to receive the Victorian Public Analyst's Certificate.

In 1914 after the war broke out, Smith joined the 1st Australian Imperial Force as a member of the 7th Battalion. He served in Gallipoli and France and was later transferred out of the forces into munitions production. During this time Smith was appointed to the Contact Sulphuric Acid Plant at His Majesty's factory at Gretna in the United Kingdom.

William J. P. Smith returned to Australia after the war, and became Production Supervisor with Cuming, Smith & Company. There he oversaw production at the Contact and Chamber Sulphuric Acid Plants. After some years the combined fertilizer company, Commonwealth Fertilisers & Chemicals Limited was formed and Smith was appointed their Raw Materials Superintendent. He held this position until his death in 1961.

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Annette Alafaci