THIS week's photo features MLA John Miller wearing his familiar black hat and posing at Kirkconnell for Bathurst photographer Mr Gregory. Mr Miller's four-wheeled buggy is fitted with a pair of kerosene lights and is drawn by a well-groomed pair of horses. The copper carriage lights were fitted with mirrored reflectors which aided in casting more light to illuminate the road ahead and enabled other carriages to be seen at night. Generally, the driver had to rely on their horses to find their way on dark roads. One can see the shadow of Mr Gregory in the foreground of the photo.
Australian coach builders copied the American four-wheel design from the 1860s, as they were light but comfortable.
Many of them had hoods to keep the sun and rain off passengers.
This type of design was often purchased by politicians, businessmen and doctors, as well as squatters.
Some designs even incorporated small turn-down seats at the rear for the owner's children, though this is not the case with Mr Miller's buggy.
John Miller was born on October 26, 1870 at Mount Rankin, near Bathurst, to grazier Alexander Miller and his wife Florence Piper.
He attended school in Bathurst before working for two years on a station.
He subsequently trained as a solicitor and was licensed in 1892. Around 1895, he married Eleanor Frankland, with whom he had a daughter.
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Later, around 1918, during the Great War, he married Sybella Stephen.
After his licensing, he became a surveyor in Bathurst, as well as the president of the Advance Bathurst League.
He was elected to the New South Wales Legislative Assembly for Bathurst in 1907, representing the Liberal Party.
Like all politicians, his time was not his own and he was soon attending many functions, such as in mid-May 1907, when he gave a speech in the School of Arts on an account of his stewardship.
There was a good attendance and Mr F.J. Tonkin presided.
Mr Miller, who was well-received, remarked that it was rather an unusual thing for a member to address his constituents in such circumstances, as there was not the sign, at the present time, of a dissolution of parliament.
In July 1908, the Bathurst Progress Association decided to ask Mr Miller to move again in the matter of the proposed Thompson's Hill deviation at White Rock.
During the brief discussion which took place on the subject, Mr J.J. Sullivan, president, said that while the Oberon Shire Council had expended over £1000 of government money on their road, the Turon Shire Council had received no consideration at all from the government in their applications for grants.
Mr Miller was always a keen supporter of the Bathurst District Band and attended the band's annual meeting for numerous years.
In August 1910, he attended the 23rd annual meeting held in the lodge room at the Oddfellows Hall in Russell Street.
Musically, the band had been up to the standard of all previous years.
The summer programs in Machattie Park were of the same high class as previous years, though the band concerts were not so successful financially as in previous years owing to opposition picture shows and other entertainments.
Mr Miller signed the pledge of one of the predecessors of the Country Party in 1913, but he was defeated in that year's elections.
The well-known ex-MLA for Bathurst sustained painful injuries in late August 1915 as the result of a buggy accident.
A shaft on his buggy broke while he was driving from Kirkconnell to Bathurst.
The horse plunged and capsized the vehicle and Mr Miller was thrown underneath.
His daughter, who was with him, was hurled several yards, but escaped with shock and bruises. Mr Miller received serious injuries.
Even out of parliament, he was approached to assist, such as in August 1919, when Mr Miller received a deputation from the local 8 Hour Committee to ask him to use his influence to have a mechanical branch of engineering added to the Bathurst Technical College.
John Miller died on August 5, 1934 in Manly.