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James Venture Mulligan (13 February 1837 - 1907) was a bushman and prospector. He was born in Drumgooland, County Down, Ireland and emigrated to Australia in 1859.  Mount Mulligan in Far North Queensland was named after him in 1872 by fellow prospectors.
After missing the gold rushes of Ballarat and Gympie, Mulligan set out to find gold on the Palmer River in Far North Queensland that had been reported by William Hann. On 30 June 1873, Mulligan discovered gold on the Palmer River, and, on 24 August of that year, he reported his find at Georgetown. The Palmer area was soon overrun by more than 30,000 prospectors, and Mulligan continued to search elsewhere. In 1874 he was to discover gold at Pine Creek.
In 1875 Mulligan became frustrated that his finds were creating great wealth for others, but were barely financing his expeditions. Unable to secure his services for free, the Queensland Government paid him £500 to find further gold fields. Instead of gold, he was to discover the Barron River and find tin that year on the current site of Herberton. In 1880 he discovered silver in the Silver Valley west of Herberton.
Mulligan was married in Brisbane on 5 March 1903. In that year he also purchased the Mount Molloy Hotel. He died on 24 August 1907 from injuries received as he tried to stop a fight. His headstone reads:
- Sacred to the memory of James Venture Mulligan, prospector and explorer, died at Mount Molloy aged 69 years. RIP. Erected by a few old friends.
- Holthouse, Hector (1967). River of Gold: The Story of the Palmer River Gold Rush. Angus and Robertson Publishers. ISBN 0-207-13802-8.
- Georgraphica's website
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