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National Museum of Australia

Collection Explorer



  • Josef Lebovic Gallery collection no. 1(7553)

    Kelso Church, Bathurst, NSW
    Methodist Church, Newtown
    The Windsor, Spring Street, Melbourne, Vic
    QSL card for VK4GU, Australia
  • Timothy Millett collection(314)

    Convict love token from G. Poulton, 1835
    Convict love token from William Maddox, 1834
    Convict love token from F. Buck, 1830
    Convict love token from H. Flood., 1844

    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.

  • Ned Kelly Memorabilia collection(3)

    Memorandum relating to a photo of Edward Kelly to be shown to all men at the police station,1878
    Photograph of bushranger Stephen (Steve) Hart
    Supplementary Report of Criminal Offence or Police Inquiry featuring image of Ned Kelly, 1878

    The Ned Kelly Memorabilia Collection comprises two documents relating to police actions following the killing of three policemen at Stringybark Creek in October 1878, plus a photograph of Steve Hart. The first document is one of several wanted notices sent to police stations in Australasia. The second is a receipt for the wanted notice, from stations in the Wagga Wagga police district.

    Murderer and self-confessed stock-thief, Ned Kelly is arguably Australia's most recognised historical character, at least superficially. Born in December1854, he was in trouble with the police of northeastern Victoria from an early age. His 'troubles' quickly escalated through indecent behaviour, assault and stock theft to killing police and robbing banks. Finally, at Glenrowan in June 1880, he and his gang donned suits of armour to make a dramatic, but doomed, stand against the Victorian police. Kelly was taken prisoner, tried and found guilty for the murder of Constable Scanlon at Stringybark Creek. He was hanged at Melbourne Gaol on 11 November 1880.

  • Springfield - Faithfull Family collection(3501)

    Continuation of handwritten recipes for
    Perfume bottle
    Tirranna Committee about 1908

    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.

  • Ben Chifley collection no. 3(53)

    Passenger ticket for Mary Corrigan dated 1878
    Sepia photograph of Mr and Mrs Patrick Chifley
    advertising leaflet and lace sample
    Presbyterian Church

    The objects in the Ben Chifley Collection refer to the lives of Ben and Elizabeth Chifley, primarily from the Chifleys' days as Prime Minister and Prime Minister's wife, but stretching beyond Ben's death in 1951 until Elizabeth's death in 1962. Significant objects include a letter of condolence to Elizabeth Chifley from Elsie Curtin (former PM John Curtin's wife) on the death of Ben Chifley (above), photos of Chifley as a young boy and a bible on which Chifley was sworn in as minister in the short-lived Scullin government of 1931.

    Joseph Benedict Chifley was Australia's sixteenth Prime Minister, leading the Australian government between 1945 and 1949. This period was one of particular importance in Australian history, being the time during which many of the contours of post-War Australian social and economic development were established. Chifley also articulated the values of the reforming Labor Party in his "Light on the Hill" speech of 1949. However, the election of December that year saw the beginning of a drastic re-alignment of political allegiances in voting behaviour, leading to over twenty years of conservative dominance in Australian politics. An understanding of Ben Chifley, in both his private and public guises, illustrates much about this crucial era in post-War Australian history.

  • Springfield Merino Stud collection(166)

    Certificate awarded at the Murrumbidgee Annual Show, 1889, First Prize
    Certificate awarded at the Murrumbidgee Annual Show, 1886, Champion Prize
    First prize card awarded at the Yass Spring Show, 1906
  • Canning Stock Route collection(124)

    Fibre basket by Thelma Judson, 2008
    Fibre basket by Rosie Williams, 2008
    Coolamon by Pampirla Hansen Boxer, 2008
    'Blood on the Ground, Wells 33-41' by Clifford Brooks, 2007

    The Canning Stock Route collection is comprised of 125 works and includes paintings, drawings, baskets, boomerangs, coolamons, headdresses, carved figures and shields.

    The Canning Stock Route is a no-longer-used cattle droving route that traverses the Great Sandy and Gibson Deserts of central Western Australia. Comprised of 48 wells along an 1800 kilometres stretch of track, the route links Wiluna in the south with Sturt Creek in the north and traverses the traditional lands of nine Aboriginal language groups. The route was founded in 1905 when Alfred Canning was commissioned to investigate a route suitable for the droving of 500 head of cattle, with water sources spaced at intervals of no more than one day's walk apart. Although Canning's map records observations of the land and water resources, it makes no mention of Indigenous places and their associated meanings which the route traversed. This collection, composed of 'painting stories', sculptural works and oral histories, re-dresses Canning's omission and records the impact of the stock route on Indigenous lives and country. A six week journey with traditional owners held in July and August of 2007 inspired the artworks, many of which were produced during the journey, and provided an opportunity for more than 70 senior and emerging artists to reconnect with traditional lands..

  • Parsons collection(280)

    Royal Australian Air Force Certificate of Service and Discharge
    View of the Griffith shops, ACT, from 70 Stuart Street.
    A woman standing at the corner of a partially completed brick house
    The front of the brick house and garden at 70 Stuart Street, Griffith, ACT

    The Parsons Collection consists of a wide range of material relating to John Parsons' Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) career during World War II, his 1941 marriage to Sylvia Johnson and their early postwar life. The Collection includes his uniforms and kitbag; items thought to have been souvenired from the 1940 Canberra air crash and photographs connected with his operational tours to New Guinea in 1943-4 and to Borneo in 1945. The Parsons' wartime wedding is represented by Sylvia's wedding dress, cake decorations and other accessories, a silver teapot and two framed wedding photographs. Their early postwar life is illustrated by photographs and documents relating to their building and purchase of a war service home in Canberra.

    The Second World War undoubtedly affected every Australian's life in some way. Through its rich range of objects, photographs and documents, this collection illustrates how two young Australians experienced the war: one ground crew in the RAAF and the other a working war bride. Its significance rests in its range and complexity.