2. Sir Henry Briggs (1844-1919), educator and politician
Henry Briggs was the son of a British shoemaker. After training at St Mark’s College, Chelsea, and a distinguished career as a schoolmaster in the UK, he was appointed founding headmaster of the Fremantle Grammar School in 1882. Here he broadened the traditional English approach to education to make it more relevant to the needs of the colony. Soon the Fremantle elite no longer felt they had to send their children to Britain for an education.
In 1896 Briggs entered politics by winning the seat of West Province. He advocated a humanitarian approach in the controversial area of industrial relations. He followed George Shenton as President of the Legislative Council in 1906, and was knighted for this work in 1916. Briggs died a bachelor and half his substantial estate went to the Home of Peace in Subiaco.