Saturday, 14 December 2013

Christmas is History at the RHSV!

Celebrating Mooroolbark
The RHSV supports research and publication of Victorian history in many ways. One of those ways is to provide a retail outlet for Victorian history publications, especially those entered in the Victorian Community History Awards each year.  If you have a hard-to-buy-for friend or relative, consider a regional history book with particular interest for them.  See our online lists of publications for sale on our website, or come in and browse. Or you might like to support our work and consider an RHSV membership as a gift. 

Our office will close on Friday 20 December, so don't leave it until the last moment, come in this week for some Christmas shopping.  We are close to Flagstaff Station on the corner of William and A'beckett streets, Melbourne.

Ballangeich and Ellerslie Bridging the Years

Edward M Curr and the Tide of History - Commendation, History Publication Award

Pioneers and Suffragists - Commendation, Local History Project Award

Water Races and Tin Mines of the Toora District - Small Publication Award

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

VicRoads Centenary Exhibition 1913- 2013 at the RHSV,

VicRoads Chief Operating Officer Steve Brown and Project Manager Centenary Natalie Wilcock at the launch yesterday.
Yesterday evening  Steve Brown, the Chief Operating Officer of VicRoads,  launched the last of a series of state-wide exhibitions of photographs from their archives, in celebration of their Centenary.    The Royal Historical Society is hosting the last of these exhibitions, which can be seen Monday to Friday 10 am to 4 pm from 25 November  to Friday 20 December 2013.

Photo: Outside Spencer Street plant travelling to Pomborneit, Melbourne 1930, courtesy Vicroads.

Interest of school children in first car to reach Bullumwaal 1913, courtesy Vicroads.

Friday, 15 November 2013

New Books in the Bookshop this week

New books which have arrived at the RHSV for sale this week include:
'Long Views & Short Vistas': Victoria's Nineteenth-Century Public Botanic Gardens, by Gwen Pasco,  which received a Commendation in the History Publication Award category;

Snarls from the Tea-tree: big cat folklore, by David Waldron and Simon Townsend;

and Making Melbourne's Monuments: the sculpture of Paul Montford, by Catherine Moriarty.

All of these books were entered in the 2013 Victorian Community History Awards.  You can see a description of these and other books here.

Friday, 8 November 2013

November 2013 History News out now

Download the November 2013 issue of RHSV History News from our website.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

New in the RHSV Bookshop

Some entries in the recent Victorian Community History Awards are available for purchase in the RHSV Bookshop.  A new list of the books available will be loaded onto the RHSV website soon, but in the meantime, below are some of the recently arrived.

Black Gold by Fred Cahir

Upper Beaconsfield: an early history by Charles W Wilson, edited by Jennifer Coates.
The Happy Hermits and Diary of A Trip to Evelyn, from the Mount Evelyn History Group.

Friday, 25 October 2013

Archie Cowan - A local history in drawing

'Gowrie', 10 Ardmillan Rd, Moonee Ponds
Archie Cowan (1938-2011) was born in Scotland. Much of his work consisted of finely detailed pen and ink drawings although he also worked in other media including oils, acrylics, water colour, pastel, pencil and charcoal. His work now hangs in 30 countries and in many private collections in the UK, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. Archie also used his drawings in a range of calendars and planners that he produced for various organisations. He had several one-man exhibitions, but mostly directed his talents toward commissioned work.

In September 2012 the estate of the late Archie Cowan donated to the RHSV many drawings of houses, streetscapes and hotels, beautifully sketched by Archie Cowan. Collectively they create a loving and personal local history of towns and suburbs of Victoria. 

A selection of his drawings are currently on display at the RHSV until Tuesday 26 November, 10 am to 4 pm.  For further information see

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Official photos from the Victorian Community History Awards 2013

Winner of the Historical Interpretation Award - The Monster Meeting: The Great Meeting of Diggers 4 pm, 15 December, 1851.
 There are some excellent photographs of the awards ceremony at Deakin Edge on Monday taken by a professional photographer on the Public Records Office Victoria Flickr account.

An Iron in the Fire in History Week

Just one cabinet with a huge variety of irons.
Original laundry product packaging.
A collection of washing day toys.
This exhibition displays an amazing array of irons of all shapes and sizes. It features irons on loan from Victorian members of The Australian Iron Collectors Association together with irons from the museum collection. Discover sad irons, crimping irons, tailors irons, travelling irons, trivets and many more interesting, unique and unusual irons and learn a little about their history. 

The Kyneton Museum is at 67 Piper Street, and the museum is open on  Friday, Saturday, and Sunday 11am-4pm. Group tours can be arranged.

More photos from the Awards Ceremony 2013

Winners and Commendations booklet, 2013

You can download the booklet of Winners and Commendations from here.

The RHSV News Blog was not able to catch up with all of the Winners and Commendations on Monday, but here are some with whom we did:

Valerie Wilson was the winner of the multimedia History Award for her website A Guide to Pioneer Graves in the Mornington Cemetery.

Fran Henke collected a Commendation in the Collaborative Community History Award on behalf of the Polio Network Australia for their book Iron Wills, Victorian Polio Survivor's Stories.

Rod Charles won the Judges' Special Prize for his book A Whirr of Many Wheels Cycling in Geelong: a chronicle from 1869 to 1980, volume 1, 1869-1914.
Cheryl Scott received a Commendation in the Small Publication Award for her book The Osborne House Story.
John Kirby collected a Commendation in the Historical Interpretation Award category for An Exhibition on the First Hundred Years of Port Melbourne.
Jan Wositzky and John Ellis collected  the Winner's Historical Interpretation Award for the Chewton Domain Society with their CDs and booklet of The Monster Meeting, The Great Meeting of Diggers 4pm, 15 December, 1851.
Winners and Commendations in the category Historical Interpretation Award.
The Winners, Commendations and selected other entries of the Victorian Community History Awards are currently on exhibition at the Royal Historical Society of Victoria.  Many of these are also available for sale at the RHSV.  You can see the list of what is available here.  This list will continue to be updated as additional books come in.

Congratulations to all our Winners, Commendations, and everyone who entered a book in the Victorian Community History Awards for 2013.  Local history is alive and well in the State of Victoria. 

At the Awards Ceremony 2013

Overall winner Robin Vowels with his trophy.

Winner and Commended of the Small Publication Category
Colleen Bower, winner of the Small Publication Award for her book Water Races and ?Tin Mines of the Toora District.. 

Justine Heazlewood, Director and Keeper of Public Records, and Don Garden, President of the Royal Historical Society of Victoria, enjoying the event at Deakin Edge.
Olwen Ford, winner of the History Publication Award, for her book Harvester City: the making of multicultural Sunshine, 1939-1975.
Stand by, there are more photos to come!

Monday, 21 October 2013

Victorian Community History Awards 2013. And the winner is .......

Victorian Community History AwardThis award recognises the most outstanding community history project submitted in any category. - See more at:
Victoria's Iron Lacework, by Robin A Vowels.

Victorian Community History Award.  This award recognises the most outstanding community history project submitted in any category.

You can see all the category winners here.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

History Week in Kyneton

Inspect the new premises of the Kyneton Historical Society at 75 Piper Street, Kyneton.

 Part of the front room where the historical society records are waiting to be accessed.

Part of the storage facility houses copies of Kyneton newspapers.

You can research your Kyneton and district families on Tuesdays and Saturdays from  9 am to 1 pm. 

Shop windows at 74 Piper Street and 24a High Street, Kyneton showcases items from the archives to depict the day to day living of the time.

If you have photos of History Weeks events to share, load them onto the History Week Victoria 2013 Flickr

Friday, 11 October 2013

The Victorian Community History Awards are coming!

The Victorian local history community is getting excited about the approaching announcement of the awards for the 2013 Victorian Community History Awards.  There have been some fascinating past winners of these awards.

The RHSV has invited entrants in the awards to send us their books for re-sale, and these have begun appearing on our bookshelves for sale.    You can consult a list of which ones are so far available here.  This will be updated in a few weeks' time.  Or you can call in during the week, Mondays to Fridays, 10 am to 4 pm, and have a browse, corner of A'Beckett and William Sts, Melbourne (entrance in A'Beckett St).

Amongst the 2013 VCHA entries for sale are:

Our Schools 1912-2012: Celebrating the first hundred years of public secondary education in Benalla.
             The Monster Meeting (CD pack) (Chewton)
            History of an era with Recipes, 1888-2002.  Rose Cottage, Bacchus Marsh.

Other 2013 VCHA entrants' books were posted here.

Keep an eye on our website and Facebook for the Awards to be announced. The winners will be announced at a ceremony on Monday 21 October.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Robyn Annear Melbourne Day Podcast

Robyn Annear at the RHSV on Melbourne Day
If you were unable to be at Robyn Annear's Melbourne talk at the Royal Historical Society of Victoria on 20 August, you can listen to the podcast.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Picture of the Month September 2013

Australian Rules
The Slipstream, January 1930 cover and an advertisement for aviators’ flying equipment
Football match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, c. 1880. Etching reproduced from ‘Victoria and it’s Metropolis: Past and Present, Volume 1′,  McCarron, Bird & Co. Publishers, Melbourne, 1888 (RHSV Collection – PHN-00225).

This unique game of football has been described variously as ‘. . . the greatest game in the world’ and ‘. . . a violent collision sport’. It was codified in 1859, having been gradually formulated in the same decade – making ‘Aussie Rules’ one of the oldest codes of football in the world. Read more...

Saturday, 31 August 2013

New in the RHSV Bookshop

Recently launched book, The Iron House:  Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne is available at the RHSV bookshop, for $44.90 and $7.50  pack & postage.

Celebrating Melbourne Day 2013 at the RHSV

Robyn Annear and former RHSV President Andrew Lemon discuss Bearbrass, published 20 years ago.

Crescy Cannan’s book The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne. - See more at:
Professor Miles Lewis launches The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne
The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne. - See more at:
Crescy Cannan’s book The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne. - See more at:
Crescy Cannan’s book The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne. - See more at:
A good crowd enjoyed Melbourne Day festivities at the RHSV, beginning with Professor Miles Lewis launching a new book by Crescy Cannan, The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne, followed by a lecture by Robyn Annear about her book about the early history of Melbourne Bearbrass, first published twenty years ago.
The Iron House: Jane Cannan and the Rush to Melbourne. - See more at:

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Monday, 26 August 2013

Line up to explore Victoria’s past!

History Week is back on the
calendar for its sixth year in 2013.
Last year there were almost 300 events
presented for History Week 2012. Historical
Societies as far apart as Warrnambool,
Shepparton and Mallacoota took part in
the week.

Many societies report an increase in visitor
numbers during the week, whilst most have
the lasting benefit of an increase in research
inquiries and networks
from the increased

Please be part of the week and be part of this
         showcase for local history in Victoria.
Event details can be submitted online at
Please follow the link on the home page to access the submission form.

New in the RHSV book shop

 There are lots of new titles on our book store shelves.  Be sure to have a look the next time you are at the RHSV.
Flyers in time:  pioneer aviation in country Victoria, by Kevin O'Reilly. 

Valuable Steps:  a history of physical 
education in Victoria, by Garry Powell.

The Borough and its People: Port Melbourne 1839 - 1939, by
Margaret and Graham Bride.

Harvester City: the making of multi-cultural Sunshine, 1839-1975, by Olwen Ford.