Archibald Weigall was born 8 December 1874 in London, England, United Kingdom to Henry Weigall (1829-1925) and Rose Sophia Mary Fane (1834-1921) and died 3 June 1952 Ascot, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom of unspecified causes. He married Grace Emily Blundell Maple (1876-1950) 16 August 1910 in Parish church, Metheringham, Lincolnshire, England, United Kingdom.

Sir William Ernest George Archibald Weigall (1874-1952) KCMG

18th Governor of South Australia
In office
9 June 1920 – 30 May 1922
Monarch George V
Premier Henry Barwell (1920-22)
Preceded by Sir Henry Galway
Succeeded by Tom Bridges

Birth name William Ernest George Archibald Weigall
Nationality British

Lieutenant Colonel Sir William Ernest George Archibald Weigall, 1st Baronet KCMG (8 December 1874 – 3 June 1952) was a British Conservative politician who was Governor of South Australia from 9 June 1920 until 30 May 1922.


Weigall was the fifth son of a Victorian artist, Henry Weigall (best known for his portrait of Disraeli in 1878–1879), and his wife, Lady Rose Fane, daughter of John Fane, 11th Earl of Westmorland. Through his mother, he was connected to several powerful aristocratic dynasties. One of his older brothers was the cricketer Gerry Weigall (born Gerald John Villiers Weigall).

He married 16 August 1910 in Metheringham, Lincolnshire, a divorcee, Grace Emily, Baroness von Echardstein, née Grace Emily Blundell Maple (1876–1950), only surviving child of the deceased furniture magnate Sir John Blundell Maple (1845–1903) who had left a fortune of £2,153,000. She was the former wife of Baron Hermann von Eckardstein (1864–1933) of the German Embassy (whom she had married in 1896).[1] By his wife, Weigall had one daughter; his wife also suffered several miscarriages, including in Australia.


Offspring of Archibald Weigall and Grace Emily Blundell Maple (1876-1950)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Priscilla Crystal Frances Blundell Weigall (1914-1996) 1914 England, United Kingdom 1996 England, United Kingdom Edward Curzon, 6th Earl Howe (1908-1984) Edward Curzon, 6th Earl Howe (1908-1984) Harold (Camel) Coriat (-1972)

Their first country residence was Grace's home, "Petwood", near Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire. Their country residence from 1933 onwards was 'Englemere' at Ascot in Berkshire.

His daughter Priscilla married 1935 Edward Curzon, C.B.E. (1908–1984), son and heir of Francis Richard Henry Penn Curzon, 5th Earl Howe. They had two daughters before they divorced.

A great-grandson is British actor Jake Weber.

Early career

Educated at Wellington College, Berkshire, and the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester, Weigall became an estate manager.

Joining the Northampton and Rutland Militia, he served in the Second Boer War and was promoted major. In World War I, he served with the Northamptonshire Regiment and on the staff, finishing with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

Political career

Captain Archibald G Weigall unsuccessfully fought the seat of Gainsborough for the Conservatives at the December 1910 general election.

He stood successfully in a by-election at Horncastle in Lincolnshire in 16 February 1911. The by-election was caused by the succession to the peerage of the sitting Conservative MP Lord Willoughby d’ Eresby, who had held Horncastle at each election since 1895[2] (on the death of his father, Earl Ancaster). He received 4,955 votes, with a majority of 107 over the Liberal, Frederick Caesar Linfield.

He remained a MP until he resigned in 1920 to become governor.

Governor of South Australia

In 1919, Weigall accepted an appointment as Governor of South Australia. He was appointed KCMG in 1920, and soon left for Adelaide, arriving in June. He very quickly became disenchanted with the State Parliament; he became extremely frustrated with the way in which ministers would spend money before being granted supply, or transfer funds voted for one purpose to another. Although never explicitly calling for the abolition of the States, he did describe the results of the division of power in Australia as being "farcical" and "chaotic", and concluded that "State Governors and State Legislatures are now anachronisms".[3]

Weigall sought leave to resign in December 1921, citing "personal and financial" reasons. The Colonial Office had wrongly informed him that the State Government would pay the wages of his staff. This was not the case, and this left Weigall a wage of merely ₤300. His departure prompted Premier Henry Barwell to raise the Governor's salary.[3]

Due to the times, many of the war memorials in country towns around South Australia were opened by him as he travelled around the state, it being only a few years after the end of World War I. These include laying the foundation stone at Burra, unveiling the memorial at Hallett, and opening the new tennis courts at the Memorial Drive Tennis Centre in Adelaide.

Weigall Oval in the suburb of Plympton, Weigall (formerly Woolshed Flat) along the River Murray, and Petwood Railway Station near Nairn were all named in his honour.

Later honours

He was appointed High Sheriff of Lincolnshire for 1926.[4]

Weigall was created a baronet, Weigall of Woodhall Spa, in 1938, and was made King of Arms of the Order of St Michael and St George also in 1938.

Since he had no sons, his baronetcy died with him.


  1. ^ Ordinarily, a marriage to a divorcee would have wrecked his career.
  2. ^ The Times, 26 December 2010
  3. ^ a b Australian Dictionary of Biography entry
  4. ^ London Gazette: no. 33143, p. 2012, 19 March 1926. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
Government offices
Preceded by
Sir Henry Galway
Governor of South Australia
Succeeded by
Sir Tom Bridges
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Lord Willoughby de Eresby
Member of Parliament for Horncastle
Succeeded by
Stafford Hotchkin
Heraldic offices
Preceded by
Sir Frank Swettenham
King of Arms of the
Order of St Michael and St George

Succeeded by
Sir Nevile Bland

Footnotes (including sources)

‡ General

Robin Patterson

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Archibald Weigall. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.