Page:The Irish in Australia.djvu/111

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97
A GOLDEN CITY.

Hon. James Forrester Sullivan and the Hon. J. J. Casey (now Judge Casey) occupy a prominent place. Mr. Sullivan, a Waterford man, came to the front as a trusted leader of the diggers in the days of oppression, and was chosen as the president of the league they established for the defence of their liberties and the assertion of their rights against official insolence and tyranny. When the battle was over, and brutal officialdom was humbled in the dust, and the diggers received the rank and the privileges of freemen, they showed their gratitude to their champion by sending him first to the newly-created municipal council, and soon afterwards to the greater parliamentary council of the colony. Mr. William Kelly, the author of "Life in Victoria," visited Sandhurst in its early days, and he describes its town council at that time as being "generally composed of most intelligent and energetic men, but containing one master-mind in the chairman, Mr. Sullivan, whom I yet look forward to see occupying the highest positions in the infant state of Victoria." This prophecy received its full realisation in after years. In parliament Mr. Sullivan sat for many years and took office as Minister of Mines—a position he held for a lengthened period, and for which he was admirably fitted by the practical experience of gold-fields work which he acquired when a young man, his intimate knowledge of the wants and the wishes of the mining population, and the strong admixture of common sense in his composition. His administration of the Mining Department was most successful and satisfactory. As a leading member of the Victorian Board of Commissioners to the Dublin International Exhibition of 1860, he deserves a word of recognition for the devoted zeal and earnestness with