David McDougall

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McDougall in 1935.

David (Davie) McDougall (14 July 1858 – 7 November 1943) was a United Party and an Independent Member of Parliament for Mataura, in the South Island of New Zealand.


Early life

Born in Glasgow, Scotland, McDougall came to New Zealand with his wife in 1884, arriving at Port Chalmers on 11 May on the Aorangi.[1]

Political career

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate Party
1928–1931 23rd Mataura United
1931–1933 24th Mataura United
1933–1935 Changed allegiance to: Independent
1935–1938 25th Mataura Independent

McDougall served on the Gore Borough Council and was Mayor of Gore in 1913, 1915–1919, 1921–1923 and 1927–1928. He unsuccessfully contested the Mataura electorate in the 1919 election as an Independent Liberal, defeated by the incumbent, George James Anderson.[2][3]

He represented the Mataura electorate in the House of Representatives for ten years from 1928 to 1938, when he was defeated.[4]

In the 1928 and 1931 elections elections, he was elected as a United Party MP. In 1933, he had voted with Labour members in Parliament on a no-confidence motion and was then excluded from the Coalition Government caucus.[1] In the 1935 election McDougall stood as an Independent, and was not opposed by Labour. He was successful,[4] and generally voted with Labour.[5] He was defeated in the 1938 election by National's Tom Macdonald.[1]

Davie McDougall was a conspicuous figure in Parliament with his tartan waistcoat and colourful language and behaviour. John A. Lee wrote that McDougall developed a habit of "peppering his talk with humorous asides", which became part of his style as a politician.[6]

Davie McDougall "spoke out for the social and economic progress for the people he represented so well and carved for himself a unique place in New Zealand's political history".[7] He retired to Dunedin, where he died in 1943, survived by 12 of his 13 children.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Smith, Hallam. "McDougall, David - Biography". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 1 November 2012.
  2. ^ The New Zealand Official Year-Book. Government Printer. 1920. Archived from the original on 1 September 2014. Retrieved 2 August 2013.
  3. ^ "The Mataura Election". Otago Daily Times (17803). 9 December 1919. p. 6. Retrieved 8 November 2014.
  4. ^ a b Wilson 1985, p. 215.
  5. ^ Milne 1966, p. 76.
  6. ^ Thomson 1998, pp. 298–299.
  7. ^ (Leslie McKay, 1969)


  • Southern People: A Dictionary of Otago and Southland Biography Edited by Jane Thomson (1998, Dunedin City Council, Dunedin)
  • Milne, Robert Stephen (1966). Political Parties in New Zealand. Oxford, England: Clarendon Press.
  • Wilson, James Oakley (1985) [First ed. published 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1984 (4th ed.). Wellington: V.R. Ward, Govt. Printer. OCLC 154283103.
  • Wood, G. Anthony, ed. (1996). Ministers and Members: In the New Zealand Parliament. Dunedin: Otago University Press.
New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
George James Anderson
Member of Parliament for Mataura
Succeeded by
Tom Macdonald
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