Menu toggle

National Museum of Australia

Where our stories come alive

Collection Explorer



  • Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1(7551)

    What a fright she got!
    1907-8 Spring & Summer Greetings from Harry Jebb the Cash Draper, Inglewood, Vic
    The Gib, Bowral
    Double Bay
  • Australian Institute of Anatomy collection(160)

  • Keith Goddard collection(252)

    Kimberley point
    Kimberley point
    Kimberley point - stone
    Kimberley point
  • Aboriginal Arts Board collection no. 2(561)

    Bark painting 'Cut-up Kangaroo ready for Ceremonial cooking' by Dick Nguleingulei Murrumurru, Gunbalanya, 1974
    Painting depicts male (left) and female modjarki, freshwater crocodiles (Crocodylus johnstoni)
    Bark painting 'Two fish' by Bardayal Nadjamerrek, Gunbalanya, 1974
    Wooden container 'Snake Dreaming at Tjuntina', painted by Tommy Lowry Tjapaltjarri, 1977
  • 1992 Torres Strait Islands Cultural Festival collection(28)

    Headdress decorated with shells and feathers, made by Audi Gibuma of Boigu Island
    Yellow, blue, green and pink floral pattern dress from Thursday Island
    Fishing spear made by Wilfred Aniba
    Fishing spear made by Wilfred Aniba
  • Springfield - Faithfull Family collection(3501)

    A young girl
    The Tasman Glacier, N.Z.
    The Pastoral Revew
    School report

    The Springfield Collection comprises about 1550 artefacts from Springfield station, south of Goulburn. It includes colonial era costume, a bushranger medal, surveying instruments, a late-19th century landau, firearms and edged weapons, wool samples and Joseph Foveaux's pocket watch and bible. The objects are complemented by over 400 photographs. This diverse collection reflects the growth and economic success of the property, responses to changes in the wool market and the daily lives of the people who have lived on Springfield.

    Springfield has grown from a 518-hectare land grant given to William Pitt Faithfull in 1828 to the current 3183 hectares with ownership remaining in the one family. William Pitt Faithfull established the Springfield Merino Stud in 1838 with ten rams selected from the Macarthur Camden Park stud. The stud evolved slowly over the years until the early 1950s when, under the management of Jim Maple-Brown, a scientific approach to wool-growing was adopted and the stud's name was changed to Fonthill to reflect this.

  • Donovan Family collection(5)

    Sterling silver cigarette box presented to Lieutenant Commander Jack Donovan, RAN
    Telegram addressed to Lieutenant Commodore J Donovan regarding the birth of his son, 1942
    Bassinette and stand

    The Donovan Collection No. 2 comprises a silver cigarette box, bassinette, telegram and parish newsletter. The cigarette box was a gift for the donor's parents, Lieutenant Commander Jack Donovan and Dr Ella Donovan on the occasion of their wedding in 1941. The bassinette, telegram and parish newsletter relate to the birth of their first son John in 1942. The National Museum of Australia already holds Mrs Donovan's wedding dress which was donated in 1990.

    The set of items on offer connect the experiences of one family during the Second World War to wider issues surrounding war-time marriage, population growth, infant welfare groups and rationing. Jack and Ella married in 1941, and their first child John was born in February 1942, in the period before war time rationing was enforced in Australia. During the war, the birth rate in Australia rose significantly encouraged by policies of population growth. Ella's experiences of motherhood would have been inflected by her own medical training as an obstetrician and gynaecologist and by a wider social emphasis on mothercraft and child welfare.

  • Lake Alexandrina 'Sister' Basket collection(1)

    Lake Alexandrina 'Sister' Basket

    This collection is a woven basket made in the Lake Alexandrina region of South Australia, traditional land of the Ngarrindjeri people, in the nineteenth century. It is a coiled basket made from sedge, which grow as tufted marsh plants beside the lakes, rivers and wetlands of the area. The basket is made of two joined identical halves, a style commonly referred to as a 'sister' basket, which is traditional to and continued by the Ngarrindjeri people.

    Basket making is considered to be one of the oldest forms of craft in the world. It is revered for both its practical and artistic qualities, and is used for utilitarian and religious purposes. Fibre weaving and basket making is a practice common to many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, having been used for carrying food, personal items, and infants. The Ngarrindjeri have retained a number of their traditional customs and Dreaming stories. The women of the region have passed the knowledge of basket making from generation to generation, and in more recent times have sold their woven baskets and mats to the tourist market.