Eleven South Australian groups will receive grants to help preserve the state’s heritage following the announcement of the 2008 Community Heritage Grants.
The successful and popular program is providing grants worth $49 290 to 11 community groups and organisations around the state in 2008. The groups include museums, historical societies, libraries and the National Trust. Each will receive funds to assist in the identification and preservation of community owned but nationally significant heritage collections.
South Australian highlights include $3 400 to the Barossa Vintage Festival for a significance assessment; $4 000 to the National Trust of South Australia for archival storage materials to rehouse the National Trust's Historic Buildings Register and $5 200 to the Port Augusta School of the Air for a significance assessment. The Royal Geographic Society of South Australia also received $4 400 for a significance assessment of the York Gate Library and Gill Library collections
Recipients attend a three-day intensive preservation and collection management workshop held at the National Library, the National Archives of Australia, the National Museum of Australia and the National Film and Sound Archive in Canberra.
National Library Director-General Jan Fullerton said the Community Heritage Grants program showed the commitment by the National Library, along with its partner institutions and the Federal Government, in encouraging communities to care for the nation’s heritage, be it in small country towns or capital cities.
“It is all about working together to help spread the message that if we don’t preserve our history now, it could be lost forever,” she said.
“Through sharing this knowledge, the information can be taken back to the communities where it is most needed to ensure that local heritage collections are still there for future generations.”
The grant money is used for significance assessments, preservation needs assessments, conservation treatments, preservation training, digitisation, and purchasing quality storage materials or environmental monitoring equipment.
The Community Heritage Grants Program is managed by the National Library. It is funded by the Australian Government through the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts; the National Archives of Australia; the National Film and Sound Archive; the National Museum of Australia and the National Library.
South Australian Police Historical Society Inc received $9 680 for a preservation needs assessment of the South Australian Police Historical Society collection and archival storage materials. The collection contains about 69 000 records and over
21 000 photographs concerning the spread of policing throughout South Australia and the Northern Territory. The South Australian Police Force is the oldest centrally controlled, state-wide police force in Australia.
Holdfast Bay History Centre, City of Holdfast Bay Council received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the Holdfast Bay historic collection. The Province of South Australia was proclaimed in Glenelg on 28 December 1836 and was the site of the first settlement on mainland South Australia. The collection illustrates how the state of South Australia changed, the area’s involvement in governance of the colony and also its involvement in the Federation of the colonies of Australia.
Barossa Vintage Festival / Barossa Wine and Tourism received $3 400 for a significance assessment of the collection. The Barossa Vintage Festival is the oldest and longest running wine festival in Australia. The collection includes photos, minutes, posters and programmes, many of which feature prominent identities within the Australian wine industry such as Colin Gramp (Orlando Wines), Bill Seppelt (Seppelt Wines), Grant Burge (Grant Burge Wines) and Peter Lehmann (Peter Lehmann Wines).
Royal South Australian Society of Arts Inc. received $4 400 for a significance assessment of the collection. The Royal South Australian Society of Arts commenced in 1856 as the South Australian Society of Arts and has supported artists for 152 years through Member Exhibitions and Federal Exhibitions in the late 1800s and into the 1920s. In the early years of the colony, the society played an important role in the development of culture and was an instigator of the present Art Gallery of South Australia.
Port Augusta School of the Air - Open Access College received $5 200 for a significance assessment of the collection. Port Augusta School of the Air was established in 1958, the first School of the Air in South Australia and the third such school in Australia. The collection contains photographs and school journals dating from 1958; recordings of school lessons, including the first lesson; documentary audio visual material; examples of pedal radio equipment; telephones and HF radio equipment.
Women's Studies Resource Centre SA Inc. received $2 260 for the reformatting of material from the Women's Liberation Movement Archives. The Archives was established in 1984 and contains material associated with Women’s Liberation, such as the Women’s Art Movement, the Feminist Theatre group, the Women’s Community Health Centre and women’s peace groups. The collection includes posters and other graphic material, badges and banners, video and audio tapes as well as manuscripts and published material.
The City of Prospect received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the collection. The Province of South Australia was proclaimed in 1836 and the first grants of land were issued in Prospect in 1838. This collection includes oral histories relating to R M Williams who owned his first factory in Prospect; diaries and letters of local soldiers held in prisoner of war camps and various documents relating to the early history of Prospect and South Australia.
National Railway Museum received $3 750 for archival storage materials. The museum owns a significant collection of artefacts and archival material relating to the railway history of Australia. In particular the collection focuses on the railway operations of the Commonwealth of Australia, the North Australia Railway, and the South Australian Railways. Represented in the Commonwealth Railways collection are the histories of the train lines that carried the TransAustralian, the Indian Pacific and the Ghan.
National Trust of South Australia received $4 000 for archival storage materials to rehouse the National Trust's Historic Buildings Register. The Trust operates 120 properties including 90 museums. The Historic Buildings Register was established in 1961 and closed in 1990 and was the first systematic attempt to list historic buildings to be protected in South Australia.
Royal Geographical Society of South Australia Inc received $4 400 for a significance assessment of the York Gate Library and Gill Library collections. The society was founded in Adelaide in 1885 and in its early years, assisted in the exploration of Australia. In 1905 the society acquired the York Gate Geographical and Colonial Library, which had been created over several decades by a London merchant, Stephen William Silver. The collections include information on what Australia looked like on first European settlement, descriptions of the topography, vegetation and climate, and Aboriginal languages, as well as maps of early exploration. The York Gate Library includes unique manuscripts such as Sir Joseph Banks' journals of his voyage to Newfoundland and Iceland (1766).
Gawler Public Library received $4 200 for a significance assessment of the Gawler Heritage Collection. Gawler was the first South Australian country town and played a pivotal role in the development of the mid-north, the Barossa and the river by being on the axis of transport and communication routes for these regions. The Heritage Collection contains a wealth of material (estimated to be in excess of 600 items) entrusted to the town of Gawler on behalf of the community.