Historical information

The portrait was commissioned after Higinbotham's death in 1893. A committee was appointed to investigate the making of a portrait and they appointed Mr L Bernard Hall, instructor and later director of the National Gallery of Victoria.
George Higinbotham (1826-1892) had a distinguished career as a newspaper editor and politican before becoming a Judge of the Supreme Court in 1880 and the third Chief Justice in 1886. Higinbotham was a long serving attorney-general in the 1860s colonial administration. Higinbotham was active in the education, land and constitutional debates of his time. He played a prominent role through his chairmanship of the of the Royal Commission into Public Instruction with regard to the introduction of the free and secular primary school education.


The portrait of George Higinbotham is of historic significance as the depiction of an important public figure in 19th Century Victoria. The painting is also of interest as an early example of L Bernard Hall's Australian works.

Physical description

Portrait in Oils of George Higinbotham. Higinbotham is seated at his desk, pen in hand. He is dressed in his judicial robes, ready for Court.

Inscriptions & markings

Signed Lower right B Hall 95.
Plaque on frame : The Hon. George Higinbotham Judge of the Supreme Court 1880-1886 Chief Justice of the Supreme Court 1866-1892