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Biographical entry Malcomson, Thomas James (1909 - 1994)

Born
10 May 1909
Collingwood, Victoria, Australia
Died
7 November 1994
Preston, Victoria, Australia
Occupation
Engineer

Summary

Thomas Malcomson was a member of the Ministry of Munitions for over thirty years. In 1940 he joined the Engineering Division and was Project Manager in the Ordnance Production Directorate for four years during the war. In this role Malcomson helped establish an Optical Munitions Industry which produced previously unavailable precision optical components and assemblies for weapons for use by the British and Australian troops. In 1946 he left the Ministry for the private industry but returned eighteen months later as an Engineer (Grade 1) at the Ordnance Factory in Maribyrnong. In 1953 Malcomson was promoted to Senior Engineer and at some time during the next eight years spent three-and-a-half months as Acting Engineer-in-Charge at the Sydney office of the Ordnance Section. However, in 1961 due to a major restructure at both the Bendigo and Maribyrnong Ordnance Factories Maclomson was demoted to Technical Officer because of a technicality and his lack of formal qualifications. Despite this, he continued with the Ministry and even spent the first few months training his replacement. In 1967 the Director of the Ordnance Supply Branch made a formal request to have Malcomson re-instated as an Engineer, but the outcome of this request is unknown. Malcomson retired in 1972.

Details

Events

1933 - 1937
Career position - Fitter at Johns & Waygood Ltd., South Melbourne
1937 - 1938
Career position - Fitter(?) at Holeproof Ltd., Brunswick
1938 - 1939
Career position - Moved to New Zealand for eight months and worked as a Fitter at Reid New Zealand Rubber Mills Ltd (three months)
April 1938 - August 1938
Career position - Fitter at Filtration and Water Softening Pty. Ltd. (five months)
1940 - 1941
Career position - Engineer in the Tool and Jig Section of the Engineering Division at the Government Ordnance Factories
1941 - 1942
Career position - Assistant Project Supervisor of Optical Munitions at the Production Division of the Government Ordnance Factories
c. 1942
Career position - Attended the Optical Munitions Panel Meeting at the University of Sydney
1942 - 1943
Career position - Project Supervisor (Grade 1) of Optical Munitions at the Government Ordnance Factories
1943
Career position - Project Supervisor (Grade 2) of Optical Munitions at the Government Ordnance Factories (five months)
1943 - 1946
Career position - Senior Project Supervisor of Optical Munitions at the Government Ordnance Factories
August 1943 - 14 September 1946
Career position - Member of the Scientific Instruments and Optical Panel
1 September 1944 - 14 September 1946
Career position - Secretary of the Optical Industry Advisory Panel (Secondary Industries Commission)
28 February 1945
Notes on the Australian Optical and Fine Instrument Industry report written
1946 - 1947
Career position - Works Manager at the F. & R. Tough works in Perth (18 months)
1948 - 1951
Career position - Engineer (Grade 1) at the Ordinance Factory in Maribyrnong, Victoria
1951 - 1952
Career position - Engineer (Grade 3) at the Ordnance Section Central Office (five months)
1952 - 1961
Career position - Senior Engineer with the Ordnance Section Central Office
1961 - c. 1967
Career position - Technical Officer then Senior Technical Officer at the Mechanical sub-section
1972
Career position - Retired from the Ministry on the Commonwealth Medical Officer's recommendation

Archival resources

National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection

  • Phillip Garth Law - Records, 1940 - 1980, MS 9458; National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection. Details

Published resources

Books

  • Mellor, D. P., The Role of Science and Industry, Australia in the War of 1939-1945, Vol. 5 of Series 4 (Civil), Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 1958. Details

Online Resources

Annette Alafaci