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The Dictionary of Australasian Biography/Miller, Hon. Henry

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Miller, Hon. Henry, was the son of the late 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. He was born at Londonderry on Dec. 31st, 1809. In 1823 his father proceeded with a detachment of his regiment in charge of a batch of convicts to Sydney, his family accompanying him. Shortly afterwards he 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, Mr. Miller 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. In 1839 Mr. Miller visited Port Phillip, 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 Oct. 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. 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 old Legislative Council. In July 1852 Mr. Miller induced the Legislative Council to petition the Queen to authorise the establishment of a branch of the Royal mint in Melbourne. Mr. 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 Jan. 1867, retiring thenceforward from public life. Mr. Miller was a most successful speculator in Melbourne property, and having conducted his investments with marvellous prudence, died on Feb. 7th, 1888, leaving enormous wealth.