The Gold Rush of 1851 was the main reason for people exploring this part of the Australian continent as many gold mines were discovered in and around Victoria. This started one of the biggest gold rushes ever seen in the world and Victoria grew economically as well as in population. From 1836 to 1851, the Victorian region was a district of New South Wales and was administered from Sydney. In 1851, Victoria became a colony and in 1901, Victoria became a part of the Commonwealth of Australia. However, Melbourne had already become the financial district of Australia by then.
Victoria accepted Common Heath as the State floral emblem on 18 September 1951. The pink form of this flower was accepted as the floral emblem of the state on 11 November 1958. Victoria became the first Australian state to give floral emblems a national recognition. The Common Heath is reflected on the armorial ensign which was granted to the Victorian state on 28 March 1973 and is also kept as a record in the College of Arms, London. The Common Heath has also been depicted on the Victorian stamp issued on 10 July 1968. The Victorian State does not have any official faunal emblem.
The Victorian flag comprises of a defaced British Blue Ensign with the state badge of Victoria on the right hand side. The state badge consists of the Southern Cross which has an imperial crown on top of it and the currently displayed crown belonged to St. Edward. The stars of the Southern Cross are white in color and have five or eight points; each star has a one point indicating the top of the flag. The flag dates back to 1877 and only some minor changes have been to the Victorian flag.
The Victorian Parliament is bicameral in nature and has two houses. The Parliament of Victoria comprises of the Queen of Australia, the Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly. The Victorian Parliament came into being on 25 November 1856 and is located at Melbourne. During this time, the Victorian Parliament was often faced with the problem of clashes between the Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly. The Parliament had earned the repute of being the most instable Parliament, however, of late, the Victorian Parliament has become one of the most stable parliaments. The present Parliament of Victoria has 128 members, out of which 40 are from Legislative Council and 88 are from the Legislative Assembly. All members are elected for a period of four years. The major political parties of Victoria include Australian Labor Party, National Party of Australia, The Australian Greens, Victorian Unity Party, Democratic Labor Party and Liberal Party of Australia.
The current Premier of Victoria is Honorable John Brumby.