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The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Humffray, Hon. John Basson

Humffray, Hon. John Basson, first Minister of Mines in Victoria, was an early settler in the great gold mining district of Ballarat, in Victoria, and took a prominent part in the agitation for the repeal of the obnoxious gold miners' licences, which culminated in 1854 in the conflict between the miners and the military at the Eureka stockade. Mr. Humffray personally was, however, always in favour of constitutional methods as opposed to physical force. In 1856 he was returned to the first Legislative Assembly of Victoria as member for North Grant. In Nov. 1860 he was appointed Commissioner for Mines in the Heales Government, and was thus the first Ministerial head of the Mining Department of Victoria. He resigned with his colleagues in Nov. 1861, and did not again take a prominent part in political life. He resided at Ballarat, where he died on March 31st, 1890.