2015 - 20cSir Henry Parks
In the 200 years since Sir Henry Parkes’ birth, much has been said about the man whose tireless efforts gave us the nation of Australia as we know it today. Described as ‘a colonial colossus’ and ‘the most commanding figure in Australian politics,’ he has been best known to generations of Australians as the Father of Federation.
Henry Parkes had already served more than fifty years in public life when he embarked on the most ambitious political cause of his career. In 1889, Parkes dedicated himself to uniting the sperate colonies of Australia under one federal government. By 1890 Parkes' political skill had succeeded in winning a federation Conference in Melbourne (attended by all Australian and New Zealand colonies).
The conference agreed a Federal Convention should meet in Sydney the following year to draw up a constitution for a federated Australia. In less than one year, Parkes had set the wheels in motion. Throughout the meetings of the convention, Parkes was the figurehead and maker of inspirational speeches.
To commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Sir Henry Parkes, the Royal Australian Mint has struck a cupro-nickel uncirculated 20 cent featuring a portrait of Parkes on the reverse.