Twenty-one Victorian groups will receive grants to help preserve the state’s heritage following the announcement of the 2009 Community Heritage Grants.
The successful and popular program is providing grants worth $91 900 to 21 community groups and organisations around the state in 2009. The groups include museums, art galleries, historical societies, migrant and religious organisations. Each will receive funds to assist in the preservation of community owned but nationally significant heritage collections.
Highlights include $4 000 to the Koorie Heritage Trust for a significance assessment of the Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs Victoria photo albums; $4 400 to the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives for a significance assessment of the organisation archive collection and $4 000 to the Jewish Museum of Australia for a significance assessment of the collection. The Australian Multicultural Foundation also received $4 300 for a preservation needs assessment of the Sir James Gobbo Australian Multicultural Foundation Library collection.
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.
Bishop Ivan Prasko Memorial Library and Museum of Ukrainian Arts and Crafts Collection received $4 400 for a preservation needs assessment of the collection of Ukrainian historical documents and artefacts. These include maps, books, photographs and prints, national costumes, ceramics and sculptures, some dating from the 15th and 17th centuries.
Merri Creek Management Committee Inc received $4 000 for a preservation needs assessment of the collection. Documenting the range of environmental actions and activities conducted the by Committee the collection includes photographic prints and slides, maps, realia and the archival records of the Committee from 1977.
The Brotherhood of St Laurence received $4 000 for a preservation needs assessment for the digitisation of images in the historical photographic collection. The photographic collection reflects the activities of The Brotherhood of St Laurence and its involvement with social justice issues across a range of geographical areas in Australia over many years.
Geelong Gallery received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the Gallery’s works on paper collection. The Gallery is one of the oldest in the region, opening in 1896. Notable items in the collection include works by 19th century artists Lionel Lindsay, John Glover, James McNeil Whistler and John Martin and `colonial images of Geelong and the region.
Royal South Street Society received $8 660 for significance and preservation needs assessments of the collection. The Society is a performing arts competition which commenced in 1891 and has been the launching pad for the careers of many significant Australian artists including Peter Dawson Gladys Moncreif, David Atkins and Anthony Callea. The competition attracted over 6,000 entrants in 2008. The collection includes competition results books, programs, photographs, badges and medals all pertaining to the history and activity of the competition.
Jewish Holocaust Centre Inc received $4 750 for a preservation needs assessment of the collection and to conduct a training workshop on the care and handling of heritage collection material. The collection includes many items relating to the Holocaust, including official documents, photographs, artworks and artefacts. It reflects the story of Australian immigration, the Australian Jewish community, the Holocaust and WWII.
Back to Back Theatre Inc received $4 400 for a preservation needs assessment of the collection. The Theatre is a leading contemporary theatre company with a professional ensemble of actors considered to have intellectual disabilities. The collection reflects the activities of the Theatre over many years and includes photographs and films of performances; posters, programs and flyers; and recordings of original music from performances.
The Nurses Memorial Centre received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the collection of documentary records, photographs and artworks. The centre was established as a “living” memorial to nurses who died on active service in World War II and continues to support the education and professional development of nurses in Victoria. Highlights of the collection include a Scutari Lamp, dating from the Crimean War and reputed to have an association with Florence Nightingale and documents relating to the fund-raising efforts of the centre’s founders Vivian Bullwinkel and Betty Jeffrey, both prisoners of war survivors.
Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives Inc received $4 400 for a significance assessment of the organisation archive collection. Reflecting the gay and lesbian movement in Australia the collection includes photographs, posters, badges and T-shirts and the records of key organisations active in the early days of the movement. A highlight of the collection are the scrapbooks of Monte Punshon which provide a unique perspective on lesbian life in the 1920s and 30s.
Koorie Heritage Trust received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs Victoria photo albums. The collection includes seven albums of black and white photographs taken between 1970 and 1973 on a range of topics including health, housing, education and key Koorie community members such as Sir Doug Nicholls, activist Margaret Tucker and artists Ronald Bull and Hilton Walsh. Photographs of the hand-back of the Lake Tyers Aboriginal Reserve are significant items in the collection.
Jewish Museum of Australia received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the collection. The collection includes organisation documents; ritual Judaica objects; secular historical and cultural objects; and artworks. Highlights of the collection include memorabilia from the voyage of the Dunera and of life in internment camps.
Southern Health received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the Southern Health Historical collection. Encompassing a large breadth of Australian health service history, the collection includes ephemera, artefacts, photographs, documents, furniture, medical instruments, uniforms and key documents relating to prominent surgeons, doctors and medical researchers such as Sir William McPherson, Professor Carl Wood and Professor Arthur Clark. The collection also reflects the history of women’s health and health services in Australia.
Buda Historic Home & Garden Inc received $4 400 for the restoration, preservation and digital reformatting of the audio tape archive. The Buda Historic Home & Garden collection contains items that belonged to the Leviny family who lived in the house from 1863 to 1981. The audio tape archive includes oral history interviews with family members, friends and employees of the family and lectures given by specialists on aspects of the Buda collection.
Life Saving Victoria received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the State Lifesaving Historical collection. The collection includes organisational records, photographs and artefacts reflecting the 100-year history of lifesaving in Victoria.
Stanley Hall & Athenaeum Committee received $3 000 for a significance assessment of Stanley Athenaeum collection. The collection includes 19th century books published by local authors such as William Guilfoyle (Melbourne Botanic Gardens Director) and local historian Geoff Craig. Objects and archives are also included and highlights are a geological collection from the local area and photographs representing the history of the town and the people.
Upper Murray Historical Society received $4 400 for the purchase of archival storage materials. The Society is responsible for the maintenance and running of the The Man from Snowy River Museum. The museum’s collection includes several unique items including a rug knitted by an Australian prisoner of war that details a complete map of Australia with state borders, coastline and his hometown of Corryong.
The Australian Multicultural Foundation received $4 300 for a preservation needs assessment of the Sir James Gobbo Australian Multicultural Foundation Library collection. Relating to the history and work of the Australian Multicultural Foundation the collection includes archival records, photographs and promotional material and ephemera.
Hastings-Western Port Historical Society Inc on behalf of the Mornington Peninsula Local History Network Group received $1 980 for a significance assessment training workshop. The Network Group comprises 24 local historical organisations, each of which administer their own collections. The training workshop will provide representatives of all of the groups with guidance on the process of assessing the significance of their collection.
The Victorian Jazz Archive received $8 590 for archival storage equipment for the Australian poster and photograph collection, and for a Preservation Training workshop. The Archive is a collection of Australian and international jazz music, musician interviews, photographs, records, posters and ephemera. A strength of the collection is its representation and documentation of the emergence of 'trad’ jazz in Australia during the 1940s and 1950s.
The Kuo Ming Tang Society of Melbourne received $4 400 for a significance assessment of the Consulate Correspondence File Collections. These archival collections contain correspondence files, personnel records and reports from the Chinese Consular office in Australia dating from 1908.
Museum of Chinese Australian History received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the collection, including photographs. The collection dates from 1850 and includes objects, documents, letters manuscripts and photographs reflecting the history of the Chinese in Australia. Highlights from the collection are a Cantonese-English phrasebook used on the Victorian and Californian goldfields in 1850, a Chinese plait (queue) anecdotally acquired during the 1861 Lambing flat riots and a Dragon jacket from the 1850s.