Bass is a small rural town 113 kilometres (70 mi) south-east of Melbourne via the South Gippsland and Bass Highways, in the Bass Coast Shire of Gippsland, Victoria, Australia. At the 2006 census, Bass and the surrounding area had a population of 937.
The town is named after George Bass who explored and named Western Port bay in 1798 in a small whaling boat and sailed some distance up the Bass river. A memorial to George Bass stands in the George Bass Park. In 1835 a Scottish immigrant from Kirkudbright Scotland named Samuel Anderson sailed up the Bass River and with a partner Robert Massie established the third permanent settlement in Victoria.Samuel had arrived in Hobart in 1830 aboard the Lang and took up a position as bookkeeper at Circular Head with Van Diemen's Land Company before setting out for Western Port in September 1835.
Samuel's brothers Hugh and Thomas joined him at Bass where they established a successful farming venture. The Anderson graves and some of their descendants are located in the San Remo Cemetery. Descendents of Thomas Anderson, the only brother to marry, remain in the area to this day. In the magazine Ancestor vol 3 No 4 1963 a chart shows the royal descent of the Reverend Herbert Potter and his wife Mary Anderson of San Remo from Edward III King of England.
The township of Bass was surveyed and settled in the early 1860s, the Post Office opening on 1 June 1862.
Located near the town is Wildlife Wonderland, which features the Giant Earthworm Museum. This building allows tourists to crawl through a magnified replica of a worm burrow and a simulated worm's stomach. Displays and educational material on the Giant Gippsland earthworm, which can grow up to 3 metres in length, and other natural history of Gippsland are also featured. Unfortunately, this Museum closed in recent years.