History of Australia
By George William Rusden
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print Publication Year: 2011
Online Publication Date:August 2011
Original Publication Year:1883
Chapter DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139013017.008
Subjects: Australian History
Having dealt with the two subjects on which the happiness of a community mainly depends—their spiritual and moral culture,—it will be well to trace the succession of Governors in Victoria after the coming into operation of the Constitution.
Sir Henry Barkly assumed office in December, 1856. His tact and ability enabled him to cope with the difficulties of a position rendered troublesome by previous events, and by his being beset by Ministers prone to lawless acts when thwarted. His suave sufficiency diverted one Ministry from a declared purpose to tack a question of policy to the Appropriation Bill, but he did nothing to provoke public discussion of his success. Armed at all points, but never boasting of his armour, the patron of science and promoter of all social improvement, he was respected by all whose esteem was desirable. If on one occasion he granted an injurious dissolution, it may be said that he could hardly be expected to divine the worthlessness of those to whom he granted it; and all knew that in singleness of purpose and patriotic impartiality his conduct was above reproach. He retained his position beyond the usual term of office, governed at the Mauritius for another protracted term, and closed his career as Governor with a third, also protracted, at the Cape of Good Hope.
The unfortunate Sir Charles Darling assumed office in Victoria in September 1863, and was hurried by his advisers into the proceedings already described.