Friday, 26 September 2014

Generous review of Simon Sleight's book and the RHSV

A recent review by Dr Andrew May of Young People and the Shaping of Public Space in Melbourne, 1870-1914, by Simon Sleight, gives generous recognition of the role played by the Royal Historical Society of Victoria in providing resources for researchers, both in our collections and in our contribution in holding conferences and publishing research. 

Sleight's book was launched at the Royal Historical Society of Victoria headquarters in A'Beckett Street, in 2013.

There was a certain appropriateness in the choice of venue for the launch of Sleight’s Young People and the Shaping of Public Space in Melbourne – not only does the Royal Historical Society of Victoria hold a treasured collection of historical materials dating from the infant origins of the city (a collection which Sleight himself has usefully mined in his research for the book), but also because a line might be drawn back from this recent contribution on the youthscapes of colonial Melbourne to the biennial conference of the RHSV in 1979, the International Year of the Child. Collected papers from that event were published in 1981 as The Colonial Child, with contributions from historians including Ken Inglis, Chris McConville and June Factor.

See the full book review here.

We can't help you with copies of Simon Sleight's book, but we do have a few remaining copies of The Colonial Child, referred to by Dr May. Only $5 plus postage! Just call in to our headquarters, 239 A'Beckett St, Melbourne, email, or phone 9326 9288.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Willis Casebooks on the radio! UPDATED!

Listen to Jon Faine, ABC Radio 774, on the Conversation Hour on Friday 19 September, 11 am, to hear Professor Richard Broome Janine Rizzetti (La Trobe University) talk about the Willis Casebooks Online Dr Simon Smith about his new book Barristers, Solicitors, Pettifoggers.

UPDATE:  You can listen to the Conversation Hour with Richard, Janine and Simon on

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Judge Willis Casebooks 1841-1843 Online

A Royal Historical Society of Victoria project,  Judge Willis Casebooks 1841-1843 Online, was launched last night by The Honourable Chief Justice of Victoria, Marilyn Warren, AC, QC.   Other speakers were His Honour Paul Mullaly, QC, whose transcriptions and commentary on the Willis Casebooks are the basis of this new website; and Janine Rizzetti (La Trobe University) who provided much of the support material about Judge John Walpole Willis.
Judge Paul Mulally and Chief Justice Marilyn Warren at the launch last night.

One of the Willis Casebooks in the RHSV collection.
Five criminal casebooks, one civil casebook and other papers of Judge Willis, the first judge in Port Phillip (later Victoria) from March 1841 to July 1843, have survived and were passed to the Royal Historical Society of Victoria (RHSV) in 1909 by James Palmer Savage, and are now in the manuscripts collection of the RHSV. The Judge Willis Casebooks are an invaluable record of Victoria's early legal jurisdiction and early Port Phillip life.

The Casebooks exist here in transcriptions with commentaries, case index, a name index and supporting documents all completed by His Honour Paul R. Mullaly QC, which are detailed in the About this Project web page. Other contextualising materials exist on this website at the support materials page.