Historical information

One of a series of photographs, taken by Edgar James Dower in the second decade of the twentieth century. Born and raised in Olinda, his family later moved to Surrey Hills. He worked as an adult as a clerk in the city office of the Metropolitan Gas Company, and in his role as a 'collector', he was able to photograph scenes including the construction of tramlines and associated buildings in Kew, Hawthorn, Camberwell and Surrey Hills. Later he established a real estate agency with his brother - the E.J. Dower Real Estate Agency, Dandenong Office.


The image is an historically significant record of the development of transport infrastructure which was used to connect Victorians in the first two decades of the twentieth century. This development resulted from increases in population and the consequent extension of Melbourne's suburbs. The photographs, both individually and collectively, richly detail the labour of workers and the tools and machinery used to create and extend Melbourne's tram network in the years preceding and during World War 1.

Physical description

Two faded original horizontal photographs, mounted on vertical card showing external and internal features of the Hawthorn Tram Depot during its construction phase. The top photo shows a panoramic view of the exterior while the second photo shows workers posed within the building.

Inscriptions & markings

Recto: "The tramways building in course of creation. C/r of Power St & Wallen Road, Hawthorn. Showing one of the original horse drawn trams which ran from Hawthorn Bridge to Auburn Road"..