Henry Miller (Australian politician)

Henry Miller MLC, 1872

Henry Miller (31 December 1809 – 7 February 1888) was an Australian banker and politician, member of the Victorian Legislative Council.[1]

Early life

Miller was born in Derry, Ireland,[2] the son of Captain Henry Miller, of H.M.'s 40th Regiment of Foot, who served with distinction in the Peninsular War, and was at the battle of Waterloo,[1] and his wife Jane, née Morpeth.[2] In 1823 Miller senior proceeded with a detachment of his regiment in charge of a batch of convicts to Sydney, his family accompanying him.

Early career

Shortly afterwards Miller senior was appointed commandant at Moreton Bay, where he spent eighteen months, and was then transferred to Van Diemen's Land, where he died at Hobart in 1866. After the arrival of the family in what was afterwards Tasmania, Miller junior obtained an appointment as an accountant in the audit office at Hobart, and at the age of twenty-four married Eliza, second daughter of the late Captain Mattinson of the Merchant Service.[1]

In 1839 Miller visited the Port Phillip District, and subsequently resigned his appointment in Tasmania, and came to Melbourne, where he settled at Richmond. He was one of the promoters of the Bank of Victoria, which was incorporated in October 1852, and was elected as the first chairman of directors, a post which he continued to occupy up till his death. He also originated a number of Insurance Companies and Building Societies.

Political career

On the separation of Port Phillip from New South Wales in 1851, Mr. Miller was elected to represent South Bourke, Evelyn and Mornington, in the original unicameral Victorian Legislative Council.[3] In July 1852 Miller induced the Legislative Council to petition the Queen to authorise the establishment of a branch of the Royal mint in Melbourne. Miller supported the ballot, and on the inauguration of the constitution in 1856 he was returned to the Upper House for the Central province. On the formation of the first O'Shanassy Administration, in March 1858, Mr. Miller became Minister of Trade and Customs, and was sworn of the Executive Council, and elected to the Legislative Council for the Western province. In July 1866 he joined the first MᶜCulloch Ministry as Commissioner of Railways, but on going before his constituents he was defeated, and resigned office in January 1867, retiring thenceforward from public life. Miller was a most successful speculator in Melbourne property, and having conducted his investments with marvellous prudence, died on 7 February 1888, at his property Findon (built by Stephen Henty)[4] in Kew, Melbourne, leaving enormous wealth.[1]


  1. 1 2 3 4 Mennell, Philip (1892). "Wikisource link to Miller, Hon. Henry". The Dictionary of Australasian Biography. London: Hutchinson & Co. Wikisource
  2. 1 2 Mellor, Suzanne G. "Miller, Henry (1809–1888)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 14 December 2012.
  3. "Miller, Henry". re-member: a database of all Victorian MPs since 1851. Parliament of Victoria.
  4. Bassett, Marnie. "Henty, Stephen George (1811–1872)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
Victorian Legislative Council
New district Member for South Bourke, Evelyn
and Mornington

October 1851 – March 1856
Served alongside: John Dane 1853–54
Henry Chapman 1855–56
New district Member for Central Province
November 1856 – April 1858
With: John Hodgson
John Pascoe Fawkner
John Hood
Nehemiah Guthridge
Succeeded by
Thomas Fellows
Preceded by
Andrew Cruikshank
Member for Western Province
May 1858 – August 1866
With: Stephen Henty
Charles Vaughan / Charles Sladen
James Palmer
Daniel Tierney / Niel Black
Succeeded by
James Strachan
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