Record

CodeNA9248
Dates1881-1965
Person NameJohnston; Thomas (1881-1965); member of parliament and Secretary of State for Scotland
SurnameJohnston
ForenamesThomas
Epithetmember of parliament and Secretary of State for Scotland
ActivityThomas Johnston (1881-1965), politician and newspaper editor, was born in Kirkintilloch in Dunbartonshire on 2 November 1881, the son of David Johnston, merchant, and his wife, Mary Blackwood. He inherited a small printing establishment and in 1906 launched 'Forward' a socialist weekly, which Johnston edited. In 1908 he became chairman of the Glasgow University Socialist Society. He was elected member of parliament for West Stirlingshire from 1922-1924. From 1925 he was member of parliament for Dundee until he took the West Stirlingshire seat in 1929, where he remained until 1945. He was appointed Secretary of State for Scotland 1929-1931 and 1941-1945. As such he created the North of Scotland Hydro-Electric Board in 1945. In 1945 became chairman of the Board and resigned in 1949. Thereafter he became chairman of the Scottish Tourist Board, forestry commissioner and chairman of the Broadcasting Council for Scotland. In 1951 he accepted chancellorship of the University of Aberdeen. He was President of the Scottish History Society from 1950-1952. In 1945 he refused an offered peerage. He married Margaret F. Cochrane (d 1977) in 1914 and together they had two daughters. He died at home in Milngavie on 5 September 1965.
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