James Graham, overland letter, 12 July 1839

Nathaniel Cutter, PhD student, School of Historical and Philosophical Studies, University of Melbourne for the Digital Humanities course James Graham’s Overland Letter provides a vivid account of the early settlement of Victoria and of the hopefulness of many of its settlers, and through the physical writing style a vibrant material record of the challenges and […]

Sarah Brown – Archivist, Germaine Greer Archive “Libraries are reservoirs of strength, grace and wit, reminders of order, calm and continuity, lakes of mental energy, neither warm nor cold, light nor dark. The pleasure they give is steady, unorgastic, reliable, deep and long-lasting. In any library in the world I am at home, unselfconscious, still […]

Bright pink poster with white outlines of people protesting, some are holding up placards. Orange "La Mama Company" written at top of poster

Looking back at La Mamas’ 50-year history, from inception in 1967 when Betty Burstall created an ‘immediate’ theatre space in Melbourne inspired by New York’s La Mama Experimental Theatre Club, reveals not only the rise of an Australian theatre nurtured by local talent, but a larger portrait of Australian society and culture. As challenges to cultural […]

Blue Art Nouveau design of a women holding a lute, surrounded by birds.

In 1911 Australian music lovers were treated to a lengthy tour by American composer and conductor Philip Sousa, along with his 55 piece band.  The band toured the world for 352 days, and was at that time, the most extensive tour made by such a large band. Most have likely heard Sousa’s distinctive style; mostly military and patriotic marches, although could […]

Jane Beattie, Assistant Archivist – University of Melbourne Archives Sophie Garrett, Assistant Archivist – University of Melbourne Archives Two pairs of ballet slippers used by Juan Cespedes are preserved in the John Harvey Foster collection, along with research material and personal effects such as Foster’s diaries and a notebook of recipes written by the pair. These […]

Stella Marr, Archivist,  University of Melbourne Archives As an archivist, it is an all too common experience to see people puzzle over your stated profession. In conversation it is usually attended with a perplexed pause; in print, it is variously and excitedly read as anarchist, or interpreted perhaps more reasonably as activist. When my inevitable […]

Geneva Bureau

Fiona Ross Senior Archivist, University of Melbourne Archives Private Rawson’s mother first contacted the Red Cross in early April 1942, six weeks after her son was captured by the Japanese at the fall of Singapore. For her, and thousands of other Australian mothers, fathers, wives, sisters and brothers, this began three and half years of […]

Dr Seumas Spark Dean of Arts Research Fellow, Monash University My first encounter with the Australian Red Cross (ARC) archive was in 2012. The return home of Australian prisoners of war (POWs) during the Second World War interested me, and I wanted to write an article on the subject. From 1942 to 1945, the Allies […]

Nurse Ooi Soh Im (left) and Nurse Alice Chia

Professor Christina Twomey, Monash University Alice Chia and Ooi Soh Im arrived in Australia in 1947, the first recipients of the Australian Imperial Forces (AIF) Malayan Nursing Scholarship. Australian prisoners of war (POWs) from the 8th Division of the AIF devised the scholarship scheme in honour of the assistance given to them during the Second […]

Chelsea Harris Public Programs and Audience Engagement, University of Melbourne Archives Within the University of Melbourne Archives’ 20 kilometres of records sits a relatively new acquisition, some 347 linear meters of records of the Australia Red Cross. Comprising 1,405 boxes across 36 series, these records relate to both the National Office as well as the […]