George Rolfe

For other people named George Rolfe, see George Rolfe (disambiguation).

Hon. George Rolfe (1808 – 18 December 1871) M.L.C., was a merchant and politician in the Colony of Victoria (a state of Australia since 1901).

Early life

Rolfe was born in Tenterden, Kent in 1808 where his father was a prosperous landholder. He became a merchant in London, and after that business failed, he emigrated to South Australia in 1848, and arrived in Adelaide on 24 June 1849 and started a partnership in land real estate. He moved to Victoria, arriving in May 1854.[1] Rolfe was the founder of one of the leading mercantile firms in Melbourne, Victoria of that time.

Political career

On 2 September 1869, Rolfe was appointed Commissioner of Customs in the second McCulloch Government, although not then a member of either House of Parliament. A motion was a few days later made in the Assembly by Mr. Byrne censuring the Premier for having gone outside the House for a colleague. It was carried, and the Ministry resigned on 20 September. Mr. Byrne then became Treasurer in the MacPherson Government, but on going back to his constituents at Crowlands for re-election was defeated by Mr. Rolfe on 5 October 1869. Rolfe was a member of the Upper House for North Western Province[1][2] from May 1860 to October 1862 and for South Western Province January 1867 to March 1867.[3]


Rolfe included in his roles in Melbourne a directorship of the National Bank of Australia and a significant contributor to the foundation of the Alfred Hospital. He was married three times, and had four children to his first marriage. He lived in Balaclava, Victoria and died there on 18 December 1871.[1]


  1. 1 2 3 "DEATH OF THE HON. GEORGE ROLFE.". The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1956). Melbourne, Vic.: National Library of Australia. 19 December 1871. p. 5. Retrieved 3 April 2012.
  2. Mennell, Philip (1892). "Wikisource link to Rolfe, Hon. George". The Dictionary of Australasian Biography. London: Hutchinson & Co. Wikisource
  3. "Re-Member (Former Members)". State Government of Victoria. Retrieved 10 October 2012.
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