Category Archives: Collections in focus

Geneva Bureau

‘A Humane and Intimate Administration’: The Red Cross’ World War Two Wounded, Missing and Prisoner of War Cards

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 […]

Unexpected journeys through POW records

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

The AIF Malayan Nursing Scholarship

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 […]

War and Peace: Stories of endeavour from the Australian Red Cross Collection

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 […]

Centenary of Japanese language teaching at the University of Melbourne

In early 1917, the call for Instructors of the Russian and Japanese languages at the University of Melbourne was advertised in several Victorian newspapers.  The roles were not salaried, but instead paid a portion of student tuition fees. An Instructor of Russian was appointed; however, it was not until the following year that a suitable […]

Women's Liberation: March on March

Women’s Liberation and Feminist Sources at UMA

Sue Fairbanks, Acting University Archivist When Germaine Greer visited Australia in 1971 to see her family and promote the paperback edition of The Female Eunuch, the Australian women’s movement was gearing up for one of its most important interventions in Australian politics. The Women’s Electoral Lobby, convened by Beatrice Faust, was formed to survey all […]

Nobel Prize Winners Notebooks Windows on Laboratory Life – PART I

by Katrina Dean, University Archivist In the Melbourne winter of 1935 Frank Macfarlane Burnet, Head of the Virology Department at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI) felt himself coming down with a cold. Instead of drinking a cup of tea or going home to lie down, he took a sample of his nasal mucous and […]

Nobel Prize Winners Notebooks Windows on Laboratory Life – PART II

by Katrina Dean, University Archivist (read Nobel Prize Winners Notebooks Windows on Laboratory Life – PART I here) When a serious accident in Burnet’s laboratory did happen, self-experimentation was not the cause. An experienced researcher with a growing scientific reputation, Dora Lush had recently returned to Melbourne from a fellowship at the National Institute for […]

‘Well, hello machine’: Timecoding audio in the Germaine Greer Archive

by Kate Hodgetts, Audio Cataloguer Imagine that you are a passenger in a car. The car is being driven through the British countryside. Your driver, Germaine Greer, tells you that this is her ‘Favourite road in all the world,’ and proceeds to describe the landscape in vivid, colourful detail. ‘It’s sort of dull and burnished, […]

We’re Not Nice Old Ladies: Records of the Alma Unit for Women and Ageing

by Susan Feldman – Adjunct Associate Professor, Monash University. University of Melbourne Archives recently acquired records relating to the establishment, work and achievements of the Alma Unit for Women and Ageing  a ground-breaking scholarly endeavour at the University of Melbourne that sought to shed new light on the connections between gender, ageing, health and wellbeing. The […]