Historical information

E.J. Dower was born and raised in Olinda. He later moved with his parents 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', was able to photograph scenes including the construction of tram and train lines 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 album and its photographs are 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 in the album, as well as Dower's single photos mounted on card, detail the labour of workers and the tools and machinery used to create and extend Melbourne's tram and train networks in the years preceding and during World War 1.

Physical description

Album of six annotated photos of construction of the St Kilda to Kew electric tram line, taken in Cotham Road, Kew, by the amateur photographer, Edgar James Dower, in 1913. The album contains images detailing the preparation for the laying of the tracks plus work on laying the line. The album, together with other phots by E.J. Dower has been made available by the owners for the Kew Historical Society to digitise and publish online and in print.

Inscriptions & markings

Annotations by the photographer, often added over time, on the reverse of each photo in the album.