Cover image for Walter Sutherland and Family
Walter Sutherland and Family
Agency Number:
Start Date:
14 Jul 1907
End Date:
06 Oct 1970
Walter Sutherland was born at Inverness, Scotland, on 14 July 1907. Orphaned in his early teens, he spent most of his childhood at Keith, Banffshire. He was educated at Harris Academy, George Heriot's School and Edinburgh University where he gained an MA with Honours in History and English. Mr Sutherland worked for six months as a seaman in the Merchant Navy before being appointed, in 1931, as a Professor of English at Scottish Church College, Calcutta, India.

Walter Sutherland married his second wife, Edna Ethel Norman (1908-1967) of Launceston, in India. They had three sons: twins Walter Kelty (Wally) and Frederick Linstead (Lin) in 1936 and Robin Alasdair in 1939.

During the Second World War Mr Sutherland continued to lecture at the College. Also he joined a British acting group which entertained troops stationed in India, and later enlisted with the York and Lancaster Regiment in the Signal Corps.

Because of the political unrest in India his family came to Tasmania in 1946. Mr Sutherland followed in 1947. They lived at Paper Beach and then Gravelly Beach. Mr Sutherland picked apples and taught at Scotch College briefly before being appointed as City Librarian in Launceston in 1948. He remained in this position until his death on 6 Oct 1970.

Walter Sutherland was involved with rugby, tennis, football and cricket; Launceston Players; wrote and produced plays; wrote poems and short stories; Launceston Film Society; National Theatre and Fine Arts Society; Advisory Council for Tasmania for the Australian Broadcasting Commission; lectured for the Adult Education Board; recited Shakespeare and classic writers from memory; and had a working knowledge of eight foreign languages.

Information Sources:
Launceston Library biography file: Biographical notes on Walter Sutherland prepared by Robin Sutherland after his father's death on 6th October 1970.
Series Created By Agency:
LMSS628 John West08 Dec 195315 Dec 1953

LMSS385 Tir Nan Og : a Play in Three Acts01 Jan 196031 Dec 1969

LPIC122 Painting of Sheds at Muddy Creek01 Jan 197631 Dec 1976