MR. J. E. DAVIDSON DEAD FOUNDER OF NEWS LIMITED
News of the sudden death of Mr. J. E. Davidson in London on Sun day was received with deep regret in Adelaide journalistic and business circles on Monday. Mr. Davidson left Adelaide in March to attend the Empire Press Confe- rence. Fifty-nine years of age at his death, he was a popular and prominent figure in Australian journalism, and was
the founder and managing director of News Limited. He rose from the ranks, gaining valu- able experience in practically all the States before laying the foundations of the company which was to control five publications. He was born at Thackaringa Station, New South Wales, and was the elder son of Mr. J. J. Davidson. It was in Western Australia that he first indulged his desire for a journalistic career After a period in the Civil Service, he left the position of secretary to Lord Forrest, then Premier of Western Aus tralia, for that of reporter on the 'West Australian.' Career in Melbourne He later joined the literary staff of the 'Argus' in Melbourne, and after nine years as a reporter he became editor of the 'Weekly Times.' Two years later he accepted the position of general manager and editor-in-chief of the 'Herald' and 'Weekly Times.' For seven years the responsibilities of that important post were borne by him and then, ten years ago, he retired from the 'Herald' and turned his attention to South Australia. In South Australia Acquiring the 'Barrier Miner' at Broken Hill and the 'Recorder' at Port Pirie, he directed his organising ability to the establishment of an Adelaide evening newspaper, in connection with which the 'Mail' was purchased. After the 'News' had been launched, another journal was published in Hobart. and a controlling interest was obtained in the 'Daily News' in Perth. Of a quiet and kindly disposition, Mr. Davidson was respected and admired by all with whom he came in contact. His death was the third which has oc- curred in his family recently. In January his brother, Mr. A. A. David son, Australian explorer and well known mining engineer, died, and be- fore that his son, Flight-Lieutenant A. Davidson, met his death as the result of an aeroplane accident in Queensland. Mr. Davidson leaves a widow, one son, Mr. N. Davidson, and one brother. Mr. T. A. Davidson, all of Adelaide. Many leading citizens expressed feelings of surprise and shock at Mr. Davidson's unexpected death. Among them were the Premier (Hon. L. L. Hill), whose acquaintance with him began at Port Pirie; Mr. A. E. Clarkson, chairman of directors of News Limited; Mr. W. E. A. Summers, secretary of the Adelaide Daily News- paper Proprietors' Association; and Mr. W. T. Rofe, chairman of the Rotary Club, of which Mr. Davidson was a prominent member.