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National Museum of Australia

Collection Explorer

4

Collections

  • L Richard Smith breastplate collection(20)

    Bob Wheelpoolee, King of Boulia, 1930
    Cobbler, King, Mogil Mogil
    Nugget, Billee-ling-oo, Queen of Boulia, 1930
    Peter, Chief of Warangesda Mission

    This collection is comprised of seventeen Australian Indigenous breastplates (also known as king plates or gorgets). They come from a collection accumulated by L. Richard Smith, a noted collector of medals and porcelain. The breastplates are associated with Indigenous people from Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia. The breastplates are all metal, of varying size, and are generally crescent shaped. Each is inscribed with the recipient's name, and many include an associated region and an honorary title such as 'king', 'queen' or 'chief'.

    During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, government authorities and settlers gave breastplates to Indigenous people for a variety of reasons. They were used as a way of selecting and identifying local elders to act as intermediaries between settlers and local Indigenous people. They were also given out in recognition of service and/or assistance (for example to Aboriginal stockmen or for saving people from ship wrecks). As such, they are significant cross-cultural objects that document early interaction between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in different regions of Australia. They often record the names of Indigenous people, and the station or region with which they are associated; people who are not otherwise represented in historical records. The collection is also significant in expanding the geographical scope of the National Museum's existing breastplate collection.

  • Papunya Art 2008 collection(15)

    Pencil and watercolour, on paper in Papunya style by unknown Pintupi artist, 1971
    Pencil drawing in Papunya style by unknown Pintupi artist, 1971
    Pencil and watercolour, on paper in Papunya style by unknown Pintupi artist, 1971
    Pencil and watercolour on paper in Papunya style by unknown Pintupi artist, 1971

    The Papunya Art 2008 Collection consists of fifteen artworks, comprising eleven untitled watercolours and drawings on paper produced by Pintupi artists in 1971, 'Goanna Corroboree at Mirkantji' painted on plywood by Kaapa Tjampitjinpa in 1971, 'Snake Dreaming for Children' painted on particle board by Uta Uta Tjangala in 1971, an untitled work painted on wooden board by Anatjari Tjakamarra in 1972, and an untitled work on linen by Uta Uta Tjangala painted in 1986. It also includes some supporting documentation held in the Archive collection.

    The works in this collection are all significant Indigenous works, representing different stages and some of the major artists involved in the development of the Western Desert art movement at Papunya, which has become internationally renowned as the origin of the contemporary Aboriginal acrylic painting industry. The fourteen works from 1971 and 1972 represent the very earliest phase of the movement at Papunya. The eleven watercolours and drawings on paper , three attributed to Uta Uta Tjangala, represent a formative moment in this movement when artists began experimenting with different media.The sketching of designs on paper took place prior to the production of acrylic paintings. Although the designs themselves had been produced traditionally by the artists as body decoration, ground and cave paintings, when Papunya school teacher Geoffrey Bardon supplied the Pintupi men with paper, watercolour and pencil, this was the first time their designs had been applied to a non-traditional surface. Kaapa Tjampitjinpa, Uta Uta Tjangala and Anatjari Tjakamarra were all important artists who contributed to the birth and subsequent development of the Papunya painting movement. The three paintings on boards in this collection, done during 1971 and 1972, therefore enhance the Museum's holdings of significant works from this early period. The 1986 Uta Uta Tjangala painting is also a significant addition to the NMA's growing holdings of this important artist. Overall, the items in this collection are significant in expanding the chronological sweep of the NMA's holdings of Papunya related material, beyond its current strengths in the 1974-1981 period.

  • Myrtle Wilson collection(87)

    Certificate awarded to Mrs V.M. Wilson for first prize at the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria for a cushion cover
    Certificate awarded at the Margaret River And Districts Agricultural Society 31st Annual Show, 1965 for first prize for an appliqued doily
    Certificate awarded to Mrs V.M. Wilson at the Barmedman P.A. & H.. Association Annual Show, 1959 for first prize for a snow white play apron
    Certificate awarded at the Wongan Hills and District Agricultural Society (Inc.) Show, 1965 for first prize for a snow white play apron
  • Timothy Millett collection(314)

    Convict love token engraved with the initials E.M. and B.M.
    Convict love token engraved with the initials S.C., 1822
    Convict love token from Henry King, 1831
    Convict love token from W. Williams, 1832

    The Timothy Millett collection comprises 307 convict love tokens dating from 1762 to 1856, and seven contemporary documents relating to the criminal justice system including: recommendations to commute the death sentences of Hester Sampson and Thomas Hayes to life transportation; a calendar of prisoners awaiting trial in the goals of Durham, Newcastle and Northumberland; a request to the Middlesex assizes for rewards to be paid; a printed copy of George Skene's last speech prior to execution; a printed broadside listing prisoners in Dorchester jail awaiting transportation; and a 60 page handwritten account of the life of Thomas Jones, who was transported twice and finally hanged at Winchester Prison in 1856.

    Convict love tokens, typically made from smoothed-down coins and engraved or stippled with a message, derive from traditional sailors' farewells. The production of these 'leaden hearts' rose as criminal indictments increased in Britain, with the majority produced during the 1820s and 1830s. As mementos made by or for convicts facing transportation (or death) to leave behind for their loved ones, the tokens provide a poignant, personal insight into the transportation system.

  • Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1(7553)

    Lake Kerferd
    Presbyterian Church Goulburn
    Van Houten's cocoa
    A Young Australian
  • ET Fealy collection(303)

    Bread Manufacturer's Licence dated 26th June 1963
    Breadcarters Award (Northumberland), 12 November 1943
    Collection of financial records 1933-1935
    Invoice
  • National Library of Australia collection(3)

    Hammond brand Multiplex typewriter with removable cover
    Hammond brand Multiplex typewriter
    Moulded wooden lid to cover a Hammond Multiplex typewriter
  • Springfield - Faithfull Family collection(3501)

    School report
    Extract from Mr Charles Matcham's letters to a relative in England 1834
    Colt Model 1851 Navy revolver with accompanying leather holster and label referring to the bushranger incident.
    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.

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