Peter Dodds McCormick

Australian schoolteacher and songwriter

Peter Dodds McCormick (c. 1834 – 30 October 1916) was a Scottish-born Australian schoolteacher. He is best known as the composer of the Australian national anthem "Advance Australia Fair".

Peter Dodds McCormick

McCormick was born in Port Glasgow, Scotland. In 1855, he moved to Sydney, New South Wales. He spent most of his life working for the NSW Education Department. He was also part of Scottish Presbyterian Church activities in Sydney. He published around 30 patriotic and Scottish songs, some of which became very popular. "Advance Australia Fair" was first performed in public by Andrew Fairfax at the St Andrew's Day concert of the Highland Society in 1878. The song quickly became popular. It was sung by a choir of 10,000 at the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia on 1 January 1901. In 1907, the New South Wales Government awarded McCormick £100 for composing the song.

On 30 October 1916, McCormick died at his home, Clydebank, in the Sydney suburb of Waverley. He was 83.[1]


  1. "Death of Mr. P. D. McCormick". The Sydney Morning Herald. 31 October 1916. Retrieved 2 February 2020.