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The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/McMillan, William

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McMillan, William, M.L.A., ex-Colonial Treasurer, New South Wales, is a partner in the well-known firm of McArthur & Co., Sydney, and has represented East Sydney in the Legislative Assembly since Feb. 1887. On the formation of the late Ministry by Sir Henry Parkes, in March 1889, he accepted the post of Colonial Treasurer, and was re-elected unopposed for East Sydney on taking office. Mr. McMillan, who is a staunch free trader, resigned his seat in the cabinet in 1890, owing to some comments made by Sir Henry Parkes on language used by him in reference to the repression of disorders during the great strike in the shipping trade. Ultimately, however, explanations were tendered, and he withdrew his resignation, which, if persisted in, would have seriously injured the Government. Mr. McMillan was one of the delegates of New South Wales to the Federation Conference held in Melbourne in Feb. 1890, and was appointed one of the representatives of the colony at the Convention held in Sydney in March 1891. In August 1891 he resigned the office of Treasurer, with the view of paying more exclusive attention to his private affairs. Mr. McMillan was appointed President of the New South Wales Commission for the Chicago Exhibition in Sept. 1891. He is the second son of the Rev. Gibson McMillan, of Melbourne, Vict. (formerly Wesleyan minister at Londonderry, Ireland), by his marriage with the daughter of Rev. John McArthur, of Londonderry, and sister of the late Sir William McArthur and of Mr. A. McArthur (q.v.). He was born on Nov. 14th, 1850, and arrived in Sydney in Nov. 1869.