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Unions Ballarat Ballarat, Victoria

Unions Ballarat represents the history of unionism in the Ballarat region. Its collection includes items relating to industrial campaigns and of political significance to the region. The collection is comprised of a variety of formats - for example, plaques, correspondence, agendas, minutes, memorabilia, photographs and other artefacts dating from the 1800s.

The Unions Ballarat is the second oldest Trades and Labour Council in the world, founded in 1883 on the back of the Ballarat Eight Hour Committees established in 1856.

Trades Hall helps organise activities and campaigns with and on behalf of our affiliated unions.

The Unions Ballarat building is the home of the Trade Union movement in Ballarat and the centrepiece of the historic Camp Street precinct.

It is a building with a rich history, built for and still owned by Ballarat Unionists. Ballarat can be justifiably proud of its Trades Hall which was built in 1887-88 by Trade Union members. It still remains the hub of Trade Union activities in the Ballarat region today.

Contact Information

location
24 Camp Street Ballarat Victoria 3350
phone
+61 5332 3666

Contact

Opening Hours

Unions Ballarat is open 9-5 Monday to Friday and the archivist is usually at the Hall Tuesday-Thursday. If you wish to view any archival objects, you must make an appointment by phoning 5332 3666. If you are not able to attend an appointment you made, please let us know as soon as you can. We are able to carry out information searches for you. If you wish to avail yourself of this service, it is important to provide enough detail for us to make a meaningful search. Please do not use abbreviations or acronyms - for example, there are two organisations in union history who have used the initials AEU (Australian Education Union and Amalgamated Engineering Union). Please note that as the collection is administered by volunteers, there may be a short delay in our reply.

Entry Fee

Nil.

Location

24 Camp Street Ballarat Victoria

The collection includes items relating to industrial campaigns and of political significance to the region. The collection is comprised of a variety of formats - for example, plaques, correspondence, agendas, minutes, memorabilia, photographs and other artefacts dating from the 1800s.

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686 items

686 items

Giuliani leadership (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 407 pages. Front cover: background - colour picture of New York; colour picture of Giuliani; white lettering; author's name and title.

Historical information

Autobiographical account. Giuliani was US Associate Attorney General, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and Mayor of New York. At different times, his political affiliations have been Democratic, Republican and Independent.

Significance

Political (USA) and autobiographical interest.

Australian railway disasters (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Books; 240 pages. Cover: colour photograph of a train accident at Black Mountain, Queensland, 1994; red lettering; author's name and title.

Historical information

Short histories and pictures of train disasters in Australia - 1873-1997.

Significance

History - railways.

Inscriptions & Markings

In pencil, "D.H. Woodward".

Robyn Mason: collected photographs

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photographs.

Historical information

Robyn Mason was a member of the ALP and unsuccessfully contested the seat of Ballarat West in 1996. She was a feminist, teacher and a social worker who fought hard for those affected by sexual abuse and violence. Robyn Mason passed away in 2016. This large collection of photographs was donated after her passing; the collection reflects the vastness of Robyn's contribution to the Ballarat community. Photographs here include the following persons: Batchelor, Peter Beacham, Jenny Borchers, Betty Borchers, Norm Bracks, Steve Breen, Barry Brumby, John Garbutt, Sherryl Keating, Paul Knight, Sharon Laffey, Catherine Mason, Robyn Rootes, Jeff Sheehan, Frank Thomson, Hedley Thwaites, John

Significance

Politics, government, advocacy, education - Ballarat region.

War on the wharves : a cartoon history

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper; book. Cover: black and white; cartoon on the front cover.

Historical information

A cartoon history of the 1998 waterfront dispute.

Significance

Relevant to the history of unions (especially the MUA) and industrial relations.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front cover: editor, author of foreword and title.

Photograph: Robyn Mason, Frank Sheehan, Jenny Beacham, Hon Justice Kerr and John Brumby

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph.

Historical information

Photograph: from left, Robyn Mason, Frank Sheehan, Jenny Beacham, Justice Kerr, John Brumby. The photograph was taken to launch the ALP Victorian Federal campaign in Ballarat in 1996 outside of the ALP campaign office. Robyn Mason was a member of the ALP and unsuccessfully contested the seat of Ballarat West in 1996. She was a feminist and a social worker who fought hard for those affected by sexual abuse and violence. Robyn Mason passed away in 2016. Frank Sheehan was the state member for Ballarat South from 1982 to 1992. Jenny Beacham is a former Labor state secretary and was an ALP candidate for Ballarat in 1996. Justice Kerr served in federal parliament as the member for Denison for 23 years (1987–2010). He was Attorney-General (1993) and Minister for Justice (1993–1996) in the Keating Government and Parliamentary Secretary for Pacific Island Affairs (2007–2009) in the Rudd Government. John Brumby was the 45th Premier of Victoria from 2007-2010. At the time of the photo, he was leader of the opposition.

The church on Bakery Hill: St Paul's Ballarat and its place in the community

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 296 pages. Front cover: orange and black photograph of Ballarat cityscape including St Paul's church; white lettering; author's and photographer's names and title.

Historical information

A story of the St Paul's Anglican Church on Bakery Hill, Ballarat, and its role in people's lives and the community.

Significance

Historical - Ballarat.

Suffrage to sufferance: 100 years of women in politics (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 210 pages.

Historical information

Janine Haines was a South Australian senator from 1977-1978 and 1981-1990. She was an Australian Democrat and became party leader from 1986-1990, being the first federal political party leader. Chapter titles: 1. Campaigning for a voice 2. The debates 1890-1918 3. The candidates 1896-1918 4. The members 1918-45 5. Two steps forward … 1945-1970 6. All the way to the top 1970-1992 7. Women and the law 8. Media attitudes and the status of women

Significance

Politics - Australia - female politicians. Historical interest.

Correspondence received

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Three letters in one folder.

Historical information

The membership began affiliation with its British parent union from the 1850s. It officially registered as Australian District of Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners in 1911. In 1945 it changed its name to Building Workers' Industrial Union (BWIU). The BWIU was deregistered in 1948 and re-formed in 1952. After subsequent amalgamations, the Australian Workers Union (AWU) now has coverage of these members.

Significance

Correspondence is an example of the Union's activities at this period in time.

Fulbright : the dissenter

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper; book.

Historical information

Senator Fulbright was a Southern Democrat in the United States who opposed McCarthyism and the Vietnam War; he served on the Foreign Relations Committee. Fulbright promoted the leglislation that enabled Fulbright grants and scholarships. The book covers the period of his time in the US senate - 1945-1974. Fulbright was defeated in the primaries in 1974.

Significance

Relevant to the history of USA politics. Biographical interest - Senator James Fulbright.

Inscriptions & Markings

Cover: author's name and title.

Journal of Australasian mining history 2003

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paperbook book.

Historical information

Relates to mining work and history in Kalgoorlie, Northern Territory, South Australia, New Zealand, New South Wales and Queensland.

Significance

Relevant to Australian and New Zealand history, particularly around miners and mining.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front cover: Name of journal, date and volume number; publisher's name. A drawing of "stamping batteries", Port Phillip Gold Mining Company, Clunes from Illustrated Australian News. Cover includes the words: "Embracing all aspects of mining history, mining archaeology and heritage." Back cover: Blank.

Photograph: Marg Card outside of ALP Ballarat campaign office

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph

Historical information

Photograph: Marg Card outside of ALP Ballarat campaign office Marg Card unsuccessfully contested the 1998 federal election for the seat of Ballarat. She served as a councillor and mayor at the Moorabool Shire. Her campaign poster is on the left hand side and reads: "Marg Card - A better deal for Ballarat."

Photograph: John Lenders and others at fundraising tea for Sharon Knight

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph

Historical information

Photograph: John Lenders and others at fundraising tea for Sharon Knight John Lenders served in the legislative assembly and legislative council in the period 1999 to 2014. He served in the cabinet, as Minister of Education and Treasurer in the Bracks and Brumby governments. He was appointed leader of government in the legislative council whilst the ALP were in power. John Lenders retired from politics in 2014. At the time the picture was taken, he was Victorian State Treasurer. There are other people in the photograph who have not been identified. There is a calico bag in the foreground that has the slogan, "Park smart: lock it, remove it or lose it" with a picture of a padlock and a Victorian Government logo. The gathering was to raise funds for Sharon Knight's state election campaign. Knight was successor to Karen Overington. Knight is now the state member for Wendouree. She has a background in health and community sectors, including having managed Lifeline in Ballarat.

Pin: Organized labor the hope of the world 1909

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Pin. Round. Sterling silver.

Historical information

This pin was created by Miss Annie Emily Gardner to raise relief money to support industrial unrest in Newcastle. It was reported in the Newcastle Morning Herald that Miss Gardner was vice-president of the Women's Organising Committee of the Political Labour League. A copy of an advertisement for the pin has been uploaded here. Price of the silver pin was 2/- and gold 15/6. Photograph of the pin - to come. Donated to Ballarat Trades Hall by John Mildren.

Significance

Significant to industrial action, union organising and the labour movement in Australia.

Inscriptions & Markings

Silver anchor superimposed over a white globe (with silver latitude and longitude lines). A safety pin is welded to the back. Blue outer circle with inscription: "Organized labor the hope of the world 1909". Inscription on the back: "USA ???" in very tiny font.

Savings bank book. Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners, Ballarat Branch.

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Bank book. Paper.

Historical information

The membership began affiliation with its British parent union from the 1850s. It officially registered as Australian District of Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners in 1911. In 1945 it changed its name to Building Workers' Industrial Union (BWIU). The BWIU was deregistered in 1948 and re-formed in 1952. After subsequent amalgamations, the Australian Workers Union (AWU) now has coverage of these members.

Significance

The bank book is a financial record of the union's Ballarat Branch.

Photograph: Paul Keating

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph.

Historical information

Photograph: Paul Keating, Prime Minister of Australia. Paul Keating visited Sebastopol Community Centre in September 1995 as part of Jenny Beacham's campaign. Paul Keating was the 24th Prime Minister of Australia and the Leader of the Labor Party from 1991 to 1996. Jenny Beacham is a former Labor state secretary and was an ALP candidate for Ballarat in 1996.

Kennedy and his women (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 222 pages. Cover: white and yellow background; colour artistic impression of JFK & a woman resting her head on his shoulder; yellow and white background; black lettering; author's name and title.

Historical information

Biographical account of John F. Kennedy and his affairs whilst he was President of the USA.

Significance

Biographical and political significance - USA.

Photograph: Ballarat Civic Hall Dinner - Elly Mewson, Bob Hawke (Prime Minister) and Norm Borchers

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph.

Historical information

Photograph: Elly Mewson, Bob Hawke (Prime Minister) and Norm Borchers at Ballarat Civic Hall Dinner. Others in photograph have not been identified. Bob Hawke was Prime Minister of Australia and the Leader of the Labor Party from 1983 to 1991. Norm Borchers passed away in 2008. Borchers was a Club President of the Sebastopol Lions Club (1975-76). He worked for the railways as an engineering employee and was long-term trade unionist (Amalgamated Engineering Union and the Australian Railways Union) and ALP member; he lived and worked in the Ballarat area. Norm was active in workplace disputes during the ALP split in 1955. He was a long time supporter of Ballarat Trades Hall.

Photograph: John Brumby and Bill Williams

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph

Historical information

Photograph: From left, John Brumby and Bill Williams at Creswick. Includes several unidentified persons. Photography has been taken outdoors. John Brumby was Victorian Treasurer and later Premier of Victoria. His government was defeated by the Liberal Party headed by Ted Baillieu in 2010. Brumby subsequently left politics. Prior to Brumby's career in state politics, he served as a federal MP in the seat of Bendigo until his defeat in 1979.

Melbourne's missing chronicle: Being the journal of preparations for departure to and proceedings at Port Philip by John Pascoe Fawkner (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 108 pages. Dust jacket (with plastic covering): black and red background; reproduction of a page from Fawkner's journals; black and white lettering; editor's and authors' names and title. Cover:

Historical information

John Pascoe Fawkner was an early settler in Port Philip Bay and (disputably) identified himself as having founded Melbourne. A journal that includes observation of the social life and customs of the period.

Significance

Autobiographical and historical (Melbourne).

Inscriptions & Markings

Remainder sale mark.

Work and Wages

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Hardback; brown cover with gold and black ornamentation; 296 pages. Inside cover: Regulations for Visitors and Subscribers to the Ballaarat Public Library has been affixed - stamped with "CANCELLED" in red.

Historical information

Written in 1872, the author examines strikes, economics, industrial relations and conciliation.

Significance

The author is a former governor of Victoria, politician and a freemason. The book is relevant to working conditions in Britain at the time of publication.

Inscriptions & Markings

Spine: number 54; author's name and title in gold embossed lettering.

Printed balance sheet of the Maritime Strike Fund

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper in folder.

Historical information

The 1890 Maritime Strike: marine officers walked out because shipowners would not negotiate terms and conditions of employment whilst the Mercantile Marine Officers' Association was affiliated with the Victorian Trades Hall Council. Union officials proposed to disaffiliate on the condition that employers would agree to meet and reach a compromise with union delegates. The shipowners refusal to meet triggered strike action.

Significance

The Maritime Strike demonstrates an historical example of an employer's attempt to undermine workplace unionism. Parallels (i.e. employers attempting to weaken union power) have been drawn between this and the Australian waterfront dispute of 1998.

Part of the furniture : moments in the history of the Federated Furniture Trades Society of Victoria

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper; hardcover. Front cover: hardcover with dustjacketp; brown and white cover; white and grey lettering.

Historical information

Lynn Beaton narrrates the social history of the Victorian Branch of the Federated Furnishing Trades Society from 1856 to 2001.

Significance

Relevant to the history of the trade union movement in Victoria. The author, Lynn Beaton, was a PhD student at Federation University, Ballarat. Her thesis topic was the history of Trades Hall, Ballarat. Sadly, Lynn passed away before completing her thesis.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front cover: author's name and title.

Printed material retained by the Progressive Political League of Victoria, Ballarat West Branch

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper 1. Australasian Labour Federation. Constitution. Melbourne, n.d. 2. Australasian Labour Federation. Rules of the NSW Procincial Council. Sydney, 1897. 3. Labour Electoral League of NSW. Rules and platform. Sydney, 1891. (Printed on reverse side of speech of T. Hough - League candidate for Glebe.) 4. Newspaper cutting regarding Ballarat Labour Electoral League. n.d. 5. People's Party. Platform and Programme. n.p., n.d. 6. Progressive Political League of Victoria. Second meeting of Central Council. Melbourne, 1891. 7. Progressive Political League of Victoria. Suggested rules to govern the nomination and selection of candidates for Parliament. n.p., n.d. 8. Progressive Political League of Victoria. To the President and members of the Central Council. 9. United Labor Party of S.A. Rules and Standing Orders. 10. Workers' Political Committee. New Zealand. Rules and constitution. n.p., n.d.

Historical information

The Progressive Political League was formed in 1891 after the 1890 Maritime Workers Strike; it subsequently became the Australian Labor Party. The PPL is also contemporaneous with the defeat of the Shearer's Strike (1891). Its platform included "electoral reform, reform of the labour laws, social reform and supported Federation on a ‘democratic basis’." (Anarchist Age 2008). More information about the formation of the Progressive Political League in Victoria can be found at http://anarchistmedia.org/pdf/701-800/AAWR-07768.html

Significance

The collection provides contemporaneous information from a variety of sources.

Keating: The Inside Story (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 594 pages. Front cover: brown background; colour photo of Paul Keating; gold and white lettering; author's name and title.

Historical information

A biography. Paul Keating was Treasurer in the Hawke ALP government. He succeeded Bob Hawke as Prime Minister of Australia following a successful leadership challenge. Keating was defeated by John Howard in the 1996 election.

Significance

Biographical, political.

Inscriptions & Markings

Stamp in red ink: "rejected copy - not for sale - under copyright".

Photographs: Victorian State Election Campaign 2018

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Electronic jpg images.

Historical information

Photographs of the Union 2018 State Election Campaign team. On 23 April 2018, Matthew Guy (Opposition Leader, Liberal Party) visited the City of Ballarat as part of his election campaign. Whilst Mr Guy was inside of the Ballarat Council building, activists from Trades Hall gathered outside with an enormous inflatable lobster. The lobster is a reminder of allegations made in 2017 that Guy dined on lobster with alleged mafia entities who may have been donors to the Liberal Party. 23 April 2018 - 2 photos. Left to right: - ; Doug Stewart, CMFEU; Brett Edgington, Unions Ballarat, Secretary; Alan Townsend, ANMF, Organiser; - ; Tracey Brown, HWU, Organiser. Back: Pinchy.

Significance

Direct significance to the Ballarat Regional Trades and Labour Council and Victorian State politics.

The Hawke memoirs (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper; book. Front cover: blue, black and white with a photograph of Bob Hawke.

Historical information

Bob Hawke was a union leader and subsequently became Prime Minister of Australia. He became Prime Minister in 1983 and was ultimately usurped as by ALP treasurer, Paul Keating, in 1991.

Significance

Relevant to the history of Australian Labor Party and Australian parliamentary politics. Autobiographical interest - Bob Hawke.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front cover: Title and a facsimile of Bob Hawke's signature.

What's wrong with Australia

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Paper; hardback book.

Historical information

"What's Wrong With Australia?" claims to analyse Australia's "Communist menace" and the damage it has done to the country. The book reflects paranoia about Communism that was typical of the 1950s. There are reflections upon Communist influence upon the Tramways Union, Waterside Workers Federation, the building industry, strikes, railway services, the Labor Party and more.

Significance

The book was written in 1953 by the Hon EJ Hogan who was a former leader of the Victorian Labor Party, who twice served as state premier. Relevant to Australian political and union history.

Inscriptions & Markings

Title and author's name on the front of the book.

Joseph Stalin: Man and legend (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 482 pages. Dustjacket: colour artistic representation of Stalin on his fiftieth birthday; blue background; white lettering; author's name and title. Cover: black background; white lettering; author's name and title.

Historical information

Personal and political biography of Joseph Stalin (1878-1953). He was born Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili and was a Soviet revolutionary. Stalin was General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1922 to 1952 and the nation's Premier from 1941 to 1953. Much of his personal life is unknown although the author seeks to uncover some of the details.

Significance

Political - Soviet Union and Communist Party. Autobiographical interest - Stalin.

Photograph: Steve Bracks and Betty Borchers

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Photograph

Historical information

Photograph: Steve Bracks and Betty Borchers Steve Bracks was the 44th Premier of Victoria from 1999-2007. He served in the shadow ministry as Shadow Treasurer. Steve Bracks was born in Ballarat. Betty Borchers worked as a legal secretary. She was active in the Ballarat ALP and is the wife of Norm Borchers.

A figure of speech: A political memoir (Don Woodward Collection)

Unions Ballarat, Ballarat

Book; 305 pages. Dust jacket: black and white photograph of the author; red, white and black lettering; author's name and title. Cover: black background; silver lettering; author's name and title.

Historical information

Graham Freudenberg's memoirs. He was a speech writer for Gough Whitlam and Arthur Calwell. He wrote the campaign speech for Mark Latham in 2004. The book includes his associations with Australian leaders from Menzies to Howard and observations about international relations.

Significance

Political - Australia - Labor. Autobiographical interest.