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Kew Historical Society Inc Kew, Victoria

Founded in 1958, the Kew Historical Society is one of the oldest suburban historical societies in Melbourne. The Society was formed to assist in the preparations for Kew’s 100th Anniversary in 1960. Today, the Society continues to work with local government and other organisations within Kew to stimulate interest in our history and heritage. It publishes, in print and online, information and resources about Kew’s history, as well as organising events relevant to our heritage. The Society cooperates with other historical societies and groups across the City of Boroondara through the Boroondara Historical Societies Association.

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Contact Information

location
PO Box 175 Kew Victoria 3101

Contact

Opening Hours

Fridays & Saturdays 11.00am to 1.00pm. Closed in January.

Entry Fee

Free entry

Location

Level 1, Kew Court House 188 High Street Kew Victoria

The Kew Historical Society was founded in 1958, and the collection predates and postdates that year. The collection has sometimes grown gradually, or significantly, the latter through key donations (eg The Rogers Collection), or due to events such as the amalgamation of the former City of Kew into the new City of Boroondara in 1994. Many ‘civic’ items were donated before, during or after the amalgamation. These records are digitised by the Kew Historical Society on Victorian Collections for the purposes of education and preservation. If you believe that we have infringed your copyright please contact us and we will remove the material from the site.

Significance

The collection as a whole fulfills the criteria for very strong historical, aesthetic and research significance at a local level. It also has many outstanding associations with state themes, figures and events and quite a few that resonate at a national level. The costume and textiles, map and picture collections each have very strong historical, research and aesthetic significance of their own accord. The degree of their significance is greatly enhanced by all of the comparative criteria: interpretive value, provenance, condition, integrity, rarity and representativeness.

The costume collection has a very high degree of aesthetic significance for its beauty, quality and workmanship. There are some items that are associated with nationally significant designers, or with Kew donors who have made an impact on society at a local and a state level (ie Prue Acton, Jinoel of Melbourne, Oggi Fashion House). The strong degree of provenance and high quality of the design and dressmaking that went into the production of these clothes strengthens the research significance of this sub-collection for those interested in fashion, textiles and dressmaking. This costume collection includes items that date back to the 1850s (patchwork Denbigh quilt) through to the 1980s, and that reflect changing styles, technologies, textiles and production methods.

The picture collection has some items that have high local significance such as the Josiah Barnes photograph ‘Kew proclaimed a city’, which was taken on that day – 10 March 1921, and the ‘Unveiling of the Kew War Memorial’ on August 30 1925 in front of an audience of over 5,000 people and presided over by the Kew Mayor and the Governor of Victoria. Both of these important images also have significance to state and national processes of municipal development and memorializing war. The mayoral portraits (part of the picture collection) have a very high degree of historical and research significance for their associations, enhanced by strong provenance and technical qualities. Eminent photographers took many of the portraits and the subjects are people who have made a significant contribution to the welfare and development of Kew and, in the case of some of the Mayors in this collection, of the state or even the nation. This includes people such as Stanley Argyle (Premier of Victoria 1932-35) and William Kerr (influential businessman and federal government advisor in the early decades of the 20th century). The significance threshold of this sub-collection is therefore likely to be of state significance at the least.

The maps and plans number some 300 or more and include some fascinating and important maps beyond the MMBW sub-collection that, itself, holds some unique items and has been discussed at length in this report. Other much earlier and hand drawn maps such as ‘Back to Kew’ (c.1875) and ‘Site of the first house in Kew Central’ (undated) are historically fascinating. In the case of ‘Back to Kew’ it is the detail of the built, natural and social landscape of Kew, which was also annotated and added to several times in subsequent decades to show the development of the area. In the case of ‘Site of the first house in Kew Central’ it is the careful recording of the garden layout and the nature of domesticity in these early days of European settlement that is both fascinating and rare to find in any local history collection. While not all the items are original the map and plan collection has a very high degree of historical and research significance.

Provenance for much of the collection is strong, and therefore supportive of its historical, research and interpretive value. Certainly the interpretive capacity for understanding a detailed and nuanced history of Kew on many levels, as well as touching or reflecting on wider stories on a state or national stage is very high.

Russell, Emma, 'Kew Historical Society Significance Assessment | Collection', History@Work, 2018

Cameron Auty 26 April 2016 9:48 AM

Amazing hat collection, these are a great addition to the site - Site admin.

Leave a comment

2365 items

Photograph - Framed Print: His Majesty King George V / after John Berrie

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Large official framed colour print of King George V in military uniform. The linked article by Laura Cook, published by the AWM in 2017 gives a history of the original Berrie portrait and reproductions.

Historical information

The original oil portrait is held by the Australian War Memorial.

Inscriptions & Markings

"His Majesty King George V"

Cerificate - Award of Appreciation: Kew Historical Society, 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Framed certificate awarded to the Society by the RHSV recognising 59 years of organisational membership.

Toy - Kiddicraft: Billie and His Seven Barrels, 1950

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Boxed children's toy, suitable for children 2-2.5 years, donated by Miss Jean Woollard circa 1997.

Puzzle - Children's Puzzle, Wood & Paint, circa 1950s

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

One of a pair of wooden puzzles used in the Denmark Street Baby Health Centre in Kew.

Historical information

In August, 1920, The Kew Town Council decided to establish a Baby Health Centre in Kew. The first Centre was opened in a room in the Town Hall in Walpole Street on 5 November 1920. In May 1939, the Railway Commissioners agreed to lease a site at the Kew Railway Station for a Baby Health Centre for a term of 21 years at 3 pounds per annum. A building, designed by Roland Chipperfield, was erected, and the Centre previously conducted at the Town Hall transferred there. This became known as the Denmark Street Baby Health Centre. (Cr. W.D. Vaughan, Kew’s Civic Century, W.D. Vaughan Pty Ltd., Kew, 1960, pp.96 & 97.)

Puzzle - Children's Puzzle, Wood & Paint, circa 1950s

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

One of a pair of wooden puzzles used in the Denmark Street Baby Health Centre in Kew.

Historical information

In August, 1920, The Kew Town Council decided to establish a Baby Health Centre in Kew. The first Centre was opened in a room in the Town Hall in Walpole Street on 5 November 1920. In May 1939, the Railway Commissioners agreed to lease a site at the Kew Railway Station for a Baby Health Centre for a term of 21 years at 3 pounds per annum. A building, designed by Roland Chipperfield, was erected, and the Centre previously conducted at the Town Hall transferred there. This became known as the Denmark Street Baby Health Centre. (Cr. W.D. Vaughan, Kew’s Civic Century, W.D. Vaughan Pty Ltd., Kew, 1960, pp.96 & 97.)

Photograph - Display: Children's Health, Kew Library, 2017

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Display sourced from the Society's and private collections, curated by Les Littlechild, illustrating historical aspects of children's health in Kew.

Photograph - Kew Baptist Church Kindergarten, Alexandra Gardens (Kew), circa 1946

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Kew Baptist Church Kindergarten Xmas break up in the Alexandra Gardens, Cotham Road, Kew, circa 1946.The donor's brother Ted Brock is in the very middle, looking at the camera.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Around the Bend ~ Asylums on the Yarra, Kew Court House, 2017

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Photographs of the opening night of the exhibition on asylums by the Yarra, organised as part of the Kew Festival 2017.

Photograph - House: 31 Miller Grove (Kew)

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Photograph of 31 Miller Grove, a house once owned and lived in by two nationally significant Australian women: firstly Marie Dalley (first female Mayor of Kew), and secondly the sculptor Leopoldine Mimovich.

Photograph - Streetscape: Kew, 2017

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Photograph of the junction of Cotham Road and High Street, Kew.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Performing Arts 1940-1970, Kew Court House, October 2017

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Photos of the third Kew Historical Society exhibition at the Kew Court House for 2017, focusing on aspects of performing arts in Kew from the 1940s to the 1970s

Photograph - Community Heritage Grant Awards Ceremony, Canberra, 29 Oct 2017

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Kew Historical Society Archivist receiving a Community Heritage Grant award on behalf of the Society at a ceremony in Canberra to conduct a Significance Assessment.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Victorian Fashion, Villa Alba, 2016

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Series of born digital images of a lecture and an exhiition at the Villa Alba Museum in 2016 of Victorian era costumes, largely drawn from the Coombs Collection of the Society. The mounting of the costumes was made possible by a City of Boroondara Strengthening Communities grant for 2015-16. Most of the costumes displayed here are separately catalogued on Victorian Collections.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Victorian Fashion, Kew Court House, 2016

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Series of born digital images of an exhiition at the Kew Court House in 2016 of Victorian era costumes, largely drawn from the Coombs Collection of the Society. The mounting of the costumes was made possible by a City of Boroondara Strengthening Communities grant for 2015-16. Each of the costumes displayed here is separately catalogued on Victorian Collections.

Photograph - Monthly Meeting: The Weirs of Princess Street, 11 April 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Display of seven costumes from the Weir collection dating from the 1910s, 1920s and 1930s used as a display at the 11 April 2018 monthly meeting at which the speakers were Jillian Rigby, Robert Baker and Suzanne McWha. The topic was the Weirs of Princess Street (Kew). The dresses form part of the Kew Historical Society Australian fashion collection and are catalogued individually.

Photographs {Series] - House: 1 Tara Avenue, Kew, 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Two storey house at 1 Tara Avenue, sold in 2018 and to be demolished in 2019.

Photographs [Series] - Chandler Highway Bridge Construction, August 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

The second of a series of photographs taken in July/August 2018 recording work on the old and new Chandler Highway Bridges.

Photographs [Series] - Chandler Highway Bridge Construction, July 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

The first of a series of photographs taken in July/August 2018 recording work on the old and new Chandler Highway Bridges.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Water H20, Kew Court House, 6 July 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

A series of photographs of objects and pictures of the second exhibition at the Kew Court House for 2018, mounted by the Kew Historical Society.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Traders of Kew, Kew Court House, July 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

A series of photographs taken of current traders and members of the Society at the opening of the first exhibition for 2018 of the Kew Historical Society in its rooms at the Kew Court House. The exhibition was one of the Society's events at the annual Kew Festival. Honoured guests included Robert Stewart, Mr & Mrs Toscano, and Angela Pakula.

Photograph - Monthly Meeting: James Nicolas ~ 'Fairyland', August 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Photograph of the presenter, James Nicolas, the author of a publication on 'Fairyland' speaking to members at the August 2018 meeting.

Photographs [Series] - Monthly Meeting: Show & Tell, July 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Photographs of exhibits and exhibitors at the July 2018 monthly meeting of the Kew Historical Society, which took the form of a 'Show & Tell' by members.

Photographs [Series] - 60th Anniversary Meeting, Kew Historical Society, September 2018

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

AGM of the Kew Historical Society coinciding with the 60th anniversary of the Society. The guest speaker was the Mayor of Kew, Cr. Jim Parke, while the patron of the Society, Sir Gus Nossal made presentations and cut the birthday cake. Presentations in recognition of service were made to Assoc. Prof. Don Garden, Brad Miles, and David Benwell.

Historical information

The Kew Historical Society was founded at a meeting called by the Kew Association in September 1958 at the home of Cr. WHS Dickinson, who was to become the first president of the Society.

Photograph - Wedding Party

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Group portrait at an unidentified wedding. The photographers name is included on the mount: A.H. Williams, South Melbourne. The State Library of Victoria records that he was 'active' between 1899-1935.

Inscriptions & Markings

"A.H. Williams, South Melbourne"

Photograph - The Dance

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Group portrait of attendees at a dance in a hall. The costumes worn by the women would indicate that the photograph was taken between 1919 and 1925.

Photograph - Woman

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Circular portrait in a square mount of an unidentified woman, circa 1900-1910

Photograph - Three Boys

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Faded sepia studio photograph of three unidentified boys, the oldest boy dressed in a quasi-military uniform. The photographer is named as G.L. Massingham ( (George Leake), active 1866-1921), of View Street, Bendigo (and Geelong), active in View Street from 1901 (to ca.1921.)

Photograph - High Street (Kew), circa 1900

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Small inscribed (later) copy of High Street from Kew Junction

Inscriptions & Markings

"High Street Looking Up From Kew Junction"

Costume - Gaiters: Wool, Leather & Metal

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Pair of knee-high tweed woollen gaiters with attached leather straps and metal buckles to tie around each foot

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition ~ Josiah Earl Barnes: The Embarkation Photographer, Kew Court House, 2015

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital series of photographs of an exhibition focusing on the World War I work of the Kew photographer, Josiah Earl Barnes, also known as 'the embarkation photographer'. All the images in the exhibition were lent by three of his descendants. The exhibition formed the Kew Historical Society's major contribution to the Gallipoli and Beyond Commemorations.

Photograph - Irena Higgins

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Black and white photograph of Irena Higgins, donated by her daughter as part of the Irena Higgins Collection.

Historical information

Born in Polish Ukraine in 1914, Irena Higgins completed her degree in social work at the University of Lwow. Migrating to Australia in 1939, she lived in Perth, Brisbane and Sydney before moving with her family to Melbourne in 1945. She initially worked at the Victorian Society for Crippled Children, then in 1951, applied for a mental health position at the Kew Cottages. Her appointment also involved working as a social worker at Willsmere. In these pioneering roles, she was the first social worker employed by the Victorian Mental Health Authority to work with children with an intellectual disability. She remained at Kew for seventeen years, becoming Senior Social Worker with a staff of three other social workers, a secretary and a number of aides. Two of Irena’s significant innovations at Kew were the establishment of a Parents’ Association, and the development of a network of volunteers trained to work with families in the community. Irena Higgins remained committed to social reform following her retirement, working actively to establish the first emergency housing in Kew. In 2016, Irena’s daughter Barbara Renowden donated a number of her papers to the Kew Historical Society. These documents constitute the Irena Higgins Collection.

Photographs [Series] - Display: Model Kitchen of the 1920s, Kew Library, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

One of two photographs of a display at the Kew Library, curated by Les Littlechild featuring items from the Kew Historical Society's and from private collections, of a model 1920s kitchen in Kew.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition - Beyond the Gate 1840-1930, Kew Court House, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

One of a series of born digital photographs of the framed photographs in the exhibition which explored thirteen historic houses in Kew using old and contemporary photographs. The Houses included: Turanville, D'Estaville, Ivy Grange,Tarring, Charleville, Ramornie, Dalsraith, Heald Lawn, and the James Beament House. Each house was selected as representative of a particular decade. The curators of the exhibition were Robert Baker, Kerry Fairbank and Tony Michael. New photgraphs of architectural features were taken with the permission of the owner of the house.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Kew From Above, Kew Court House, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

A born digital photograph of members and guests at the exhibition opening. Photo 1: L-R Terryl de Lacey, Janet Walker, Don Garden Photo 2: Les Littlechild, Sue Littlechild, Ian Job, ..., ... Photo 3: John Torpey, Slavka Jelovac

Photograph - Sign, Kew Croquet Club, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of a sign advertising the Kew Croquet Club in Victoria Park, Kew.

Photographs [Series] - Exhibition: Sport in Kew, Kew Court House & Kew Library, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

One of a series of born digital photographs of an exhibition mounted at the Kew Court House and or Kew Library in 2014 involving photographs and artefacts from the Kew Croquet Club, the Kew Football Club, the Kew Golf Club, the Green Acres Golf Club and the North Kew Tennis Club.

Photograph - Members, Kew Croquet Club, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of members of the Kew Croquet Club, photographed for an exhibition on Sport in Kew, held at the Kew Court House in 2014.

Photograph - Kew Croquet Club, Victoria Park (Kew), 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of a seat at the Kew Croquet Club.

Photograph - Kew Croquet Club, Victoria Park (Kew), 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of the interior of the Kew Croquet Club.

Photograph - Kew Croquet Club, Victoria Park (Kew), 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of the exterior of the Kew Croquet Club in Victoria Park, Kew.

Photograph - Harriers' Pavilion, Victoria Park (Kew), 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of the exterior of the renovated Harriers' Pavilion at Victoria Park (Kew)

Photograph - Display: Farming in Kew, Kew Library, 2014

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of a display in the Kew Library of historic photographs and items relating to farming in Kew. The display was mounted using Kew Historical Society images and artefacts.

Photograph - Grave of George Wharton, Boroondara General Cemetery, 2013

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of the grave and headstone of the architect George Wharton in the Boroondara General (Kew) Cemetery, 2013. George Wharton created the first survey of Kew and was elected the Municipality's first Chairman in 1861.

Photograph - Vicarage, Holy Trinity Church (Kew) 2013

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Born digital image of the facade of the bluestone vicarage in Pakington Street (Kew), designed by Charles Vickers.

Photographs [Series] - Display: Kew High School, Kew Library, 2013

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Three born digital images of an exhibition of items significant to the history of Kew High School. The exhibition was curated by Val Bourke of the Kew Historical Society, and located in the Kew Library.

Photograph - Dr Frederick Stamp, Medical Superintendent, Willsmere Mental Hospital, 1981-1988

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Formal photograph used for exhibition purposes at the Willsmere Hospital of past medical superintendents. Each photograph is framed with a white mount on which the name of the superintendent and his term of office is recorded.

Historical information

The new Kew Lunatic Asylum was completed in 1871 and opened in 1872. The year 1972 marked it's centenary. Over the years, members of staff at the asylum collected records, photographs, publications and plans of the asylum, later hospital. The Society has a number of important collections relating to the asylum and the Children's Cottages. These include the Dr Cliff Judge, the Irena Higgins and the Dr Fred Stamp Collections. This portrait photograph is one of a number of items donated by the family of the late Dr. Fred Stamp who was the last medical superintendent of the Hospital. Dr Frederick Stamp graduated from Bristol Medical School (UK) in 1968. He and his family emigrated to Australia in 1977 to Goulburn (NSW), moving to Melbourne in 1980. He became Superintendent at Willsmere in 1981 until its closure in 1988.

Significance

Following their closure, the medical records of the Kew Mental Hospital and the Children's Cottages Kew were relocated to the archives of Victorian Government departments and ultimately to the Public Records Office of Victoria. Other collections, such as the Fred Stamp Collection, were assembled by staff who worked at the hospital. The years leading up to the closure of Kew must have been fraught, and many of the items in the hospital were probably destined for hard waste disposal. Dr. Fred Stamp, the last medical superintendent, kept aside or rescued a number of these items, of which this is one. Following his death, his family donated these to the Kew Historical Society. The Society recognises these items to be of lasting historical significance, essentially due to their provenance and to their rarity. Together they (and the Judge and Higgins Collections) are an invaluable aid for researchers of the institutions' histories.

Photograph - Dr. Cyril Burt, Medical Superintendent, Willsmere Mental Hospital, 1967-1977

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Formal photograph used for exhibition purposes at the Willsmere Hospital of past medical superintendents. Each photograph is framed with a white mount on which the name of the superintendent and his term of office is recorded.

Historical information

The new Kew Lunatic Asylum was completed in 1871 and opened in 1872. The year 1972 marked it's centenary. Over the years, members of staff at the asylum collected records, photographs, publications and plans of the asylum, later hospital. The Society has a number of important collections relating to the asylum and the Children's Cottages. These include the Dr Cliff Judge, the Irena Higgins and the Dr Fred Stamp Collections. This portrait photograph is one of a number of items donated by the family of the late Dr. Fred Stamp who was the last medical superintendent of the Hospital. Dr Frederick Stamp graduated from Bristol Medical School (UK) in 1968. He and his family emigrated to Australia in 1977 to Goulburn (NSW), moving to Melbourne in 1980. He became Superintendent at Willsmere in 1981 until its closure in 1988.

Significance

Following their closure, the medical records of the Kew Mental Hospital and the Children's Cottages Kew were relocated to the archives of Victorian Government departments and ultimately to the Public Records Office of Victoria. Other collections, such as the Fred Stamp Collection, were assembled by staff who worked at the hospital. The years leading up to the closure of Kew must have been fraught, and many of the items in the hospital were probably destined for hard waste disposal. Dr. Fred Stamp, the last medical superintendent, kept aside or rescued a number of these items, of which this is one. Following his death, his family donated these to the Kew Historical Society. The Society recognises these items to be of lasting historical significance, essentially due to their provenance and to their rarity. Together they (and the Judge and Higgins Collections) are an invaluable aid for researchers of the institutions' histories.

Photograph - Dr. H. Bower, Medical Superintendent, Kew Mental Hospital, 1956-1966

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Formal photograph used for exhibition purposes at the Willsmere Hospital of past medical superintendents. Each photograph is framed with a white mount on which the name of the superintendent and his term of office is recorded.

Historical information

The new Kew Lunatic Asylum was completed in 1871 and opened in 1872. The year 1972 marked it's centenary. Over the years, members of staff at the asylum collected records, photographs, publications and plans of the asylum, later hospital. The Society has a number of important collections relating to the asylum and the Children's Cottages. These include the Dr Cliff Judge, the Irena Higgins and the Dr Fred Stamp Collections. This portrait photograph is one of a number of items donated by the family of the late Dr. Fred Stamp who was the last medical superintendent of the Hospital. Dr Frederick Stamp graduated from Bristol Medical School (UK) in 1968. He and his family emigrated to Australia in 1977 to Goulburn (NSW), moving to Melbourne in 1980. He became Superintendent at Willsmere in 1981 until its closure in 1988.

Significance

Following their closure, the medical records of the Kew Mental Hospital and the Children's Cottages Kew were relocated to the archives of Victorian Government departments and ultimately to the Public Records Office of Victoria. Other collections, such as the Fred Stamp Collection, were assembled by staff who worked at the hospital. The years leading up to the closure of Kew must have been fraught, and many of the items in the hospital were probably destined for hard waste disposal. Dr. Fred Stamp, the last medical superintendent, kept aside or rescued a number of these items, of which this is one. Following his death, his family donated these to the Kew Historical Society. The Society recognises these items to be of lasting historical significance, essentially due to their provenance and to their rarity. Together they (and the Judge and Higgins Collections) are an invaluable aid for researchers of the institutions' histories.

Photograph - Dr. James V. Ashburner, Medical Superintendent, Kew Mental Hospital, 1952-1955

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Formal photograph used for exhibition purposes at the Willsmere Hospital of past medical superintendents. Each photograph is framed with a white mount on which the name of the superintendent and his term of office is recorded.

Historical information

The new Kew Lunatic Asylum was completed in 1871 and opened in 1872. The year 1972 marked it's centenary. Over the years, members of staff at the asylum collected records, photographs, publications and plans of the asylum, later hospital. The Society has a number of important collections relating to the asylum and the Children's Cottages. These include the Dr Cliff Judge, the Irena Higgins and the Dr Fred Stamp Collections. This portrait photograph is one of a number of items donated by the family of the late Dr. Fred Stamp who was the last medical superintendent of the Hospital. Dr Frederick Stamp graduated from Bristol Medical School (UK) in 1968. He and his family emigrated to Australia in 1977 to Goulburn (NSW), moving to Melbourne in 1980. He became Superintendent at Willsmere in 1981 until its closure in 1988.

Significance

Following their closure, the medical records of the Kew Mental Hospital and the Children's Cottages Kew were relocated to the archives of Victorian Government departments and ultimately to the Public Records Office of Victoria. Other collections, such as the Fred Stamp Collection, were assembled by staff who worked at the hospital. The years leading up to the closure of Kew must have been fraught, and many of the items in the hospital were probably destined for hard waste disposal. Dr. Fred Stamp, the last medical superintendent, kept aside or rescued a number of these items, of which this is one. Following his death, his family donated these to the Kew Historical Society. The Society recognises these items to be of lasting historical significance, essentially due to their provenance and to their rarity. Together they (and the Judge and Higgins Collections) are an invaluable aid for researchers of the institutions' histories.

Photograph - Dr. Retallick, Medical Superintendent, Kew Mental Hospital, 1950-1952

Kew Historical Society Inc, Kew

Formal photograph used for exhibition purposes at the Willsmere Hospital of past medical superintendents. Each photograph is framed with a white mount on which the name of the superintendent and his term of office is recorded.

Historical information

The new Kew Lunatic Asylum was completed in 1871 and opened in 1872. The year 1972 marked it's centenary. Over the years, members of staff at the asylum collected records, photographs, publications and plans of the asylum, later hospital. The Society has a number of important collections relating to the asylum and the Children's Cottages. These include the Dr Cliff Judge, the Irena Higgins and the Dr Fred Stamp Collections. This portrait photograph is one of a number of items donated by the family of the late Dr. Fred Stamp who was the last medical superintendent of the Hospital. Dr Frederick Stamp graduated from Bristol Medical School (UK) in 1968. He and his family emigrated to Australia in 1977 to Goulburn (NSW), moving to Melbourne in 1980. He became Superintendent at Willsmere in 1981 until its closure in 1988.

Significance

Following their closure, the medical records of the Kew Mental Hospital and the Children's Cottages Kew were relocated to the archives of Victorian Government departments and ultimately to the Public Records Office of Victoria. Other collections, such as the Fred Stamp Collection, were assembled by staff who worked at the hospital. The years leading up to the closure of Kew must have been fraught, and many of the items in the hospital were probably destined for hard waste disposal. Dr. Fred Stamp, the last medical superintendent, kept aside or rescued a number of these items, of which this is one. Following his death, his family donated these to the Kew Historical Society. The Society recognises these items to be of lasting historical significance, essentially due to their provenance and to their rarity. Together they (and the Judge and Higgins Collections) are an invaluable aid for researchers of the institutions' histories.