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National Museum of Australia

Collection Explorer



  • Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1(7553)

    Albert H. Baile, Musical Director, Australian National Band (World Tour)
    Australian natives - What ho! She Bumps
    Sitting rough-un
    The Burley boy draws attention
  • Snowy Scheme - Frank Rodwell collection(2)

    Dark brown hard hat made of Duperite associated with the Snowy Scheme
    Molded yellow plastic hard hat associated wtih the Snowy Scheme

    The Snowy Scheme - Frank Rodwell Collection consists of two hard hats from the Scheme, one dating from the early 1950s and the other being of later design.

    The Snowy Scheme is Australia's largest engineering work and one of the great engineering feats of the world. Designed to produce irrigation water and electricity, the Scheme took 25 years to construct, 1949-74. Including 7 power stations, 16 dams and 225 kilometres of aqueducts and tunnels, the Scheme was built by a workforce of 100,000 people, two-thirds of whom came from overseas. The scheme played a major part in making Australia multi-cultural, and also in developing Australia's manufacturing, technical and engineering capacities. This collection, consisting of a pair of hard hats, reflects the need for protective clothing for Snowy workers and indicates the hard and dangerous nature of work on the Scheme's projects, including construction generally but especially tunnelling.

  • Tooloyn Koortakay collection(28)

    Keerna Kuyang (Eel traps)
    Thanambool Yana
    Morrom - wrist ornament
    Possum pelt with poker work designs burnt into the skin, and ochre added to the incised markings

    The Tooloyn Koortakay Collection comprises thirty pieces including a reproduction of the Maiden's Punt Yorta Yorta possum skin cloak collected in 1853, a reproduction of the Lake Condah Gunditjmara possum skin cloak collected in 1872, pastel drawings, lino cuts, etchings, possum skin dance ornaments and a selection of tools for making possum skin cloaks. As the cloaks were well over one hundred years old and slowly deteriorating, Lee Darroch, Treahna Hamm, Vicki Couzens and Debra Couzens undertook the project as a commitment to cultural regeneration.

    Possum skin cloaks are a significant aspect of Aboriginal cultural heritage from Victoria and other parts of southeastern Australia. Prior to 1830 almost every person had his or her own possum skin cloak to wear during winter and use for a mattress or blanket. Cloaks were incised with designs representing clan identity, animals, plants and natural features. As there are only five cloaks from this region known to exist in the world, the Tooloyn Koortakay collection is an important historical record as well as a significant expression of contemporary cultural change and identity.

  • Bureau of Mineral Resources collection no. 1(534)

    DTMCIW magnetometer S/N 16
    DTMCIW magnetometer S/N 18
    Kittell Chronometer No 269
    Hunting Adastra Gulf airborne magnetometer
  • Springfield - Faithfull Family collection(3501)

    Tissue paper
    Photograph of interior of a living room at Camelot, home of Lilian Faithfull after her marriage to William Hugh Anderson
    Handwritten recipe for

    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.

  • Mount Stromlo Observatory collection(5)

    Scorched teacup, a relic from the 2003 bush fire that destroyed the Mount Stromlo Observatory
    Piece of fractured yellow Pyrex mirror blank, a relic from the 2003 bush fire that destroyed the Mount Stromlo Observatory
    Piece of blackened clear glass telescope lens, a relic from the 2003 bush fire that destroyed the Mount Stromlo Observatory
    Damaged auto-collimator, a relic from the 2003 bush fire that destroyed the Mount Stromlo Observatory

    The Mount Stromlo Observatory Collection consists of one molten telescope mirror; one molten optical glass (flint); one burnt auto collimator from late 1950s (above); one yellow pyrex mirror blank; one teacup with molten aluminium roof attached (above).

    In early January, fires were started by lightening in Namagi National Park in the ACT. Efforts to contain the fires were unsuccessful and several fires combined on 18 January and swept into western Canberra over Mount Stromlo. In the course of that day, four lives were lost and almost five hundred homes destroyed. For the MSO the fires were devastating. All five of the Observatory's telescopes were lost as well as the 1924 heritage building, accommodating the administration staff. Only the Visitor Centre, and the Wooley and Duffield buildings (housing the academic staff and computing resources) were spared. The loss of the observatory was not only a loss to Australia's scientific community, but to the international scientific community also.

  • Everitt and George Family collection(911)

    Film-script titled 'Penny Plain, Twopence Coloured'
    The Toy Theatre
    Toy Theatre Drury Lane 19th Century
    Photographic print depicting Mr George with a toy theatre

    The Everitt and George Family collection consists of over 800 objects including a Toy Theatre with a 'Redington' proscenium and a second back stage, play booklets and associated scenery, photographs of the Toy Theatre, and documents and working notes related to the collection. The collection is in good condition.

    The Toy Theatre was invented in England around 1811, reflecting the popularity of pantomimes and plays performed in the leading theatres around London in the same period. They soon became a favourite pastime for teenage boys and adult collectors alike, with a long list of publishers producing a wealth of material. B Pollock was one of the most famous of these publishers and the earliest pieces in this collection have been attributed to Pollock. Though this was largely an English tradition the collection reflects the first owner Edward Everitt's heritage, who migrated to Australia in the 19th century bringing parts of the Toy Theatre with him.

  • Dr Helen M Wurm collection no. 4(75)

    Bark painting depicting a goanna, a tree and a drum, by Libunja, Milingimbi, 1967
    Bark painting 'The Bremer Island Turtle Man' by Mawalan Marika, Yirrkala, 1967
    Bark painting 'The Wagilag Story' by Dawidi Djulwadak, Milingimbi, 1967
    Bark painting depicting yams, decorated with dots, in centre with six birds