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Mission to Seafarers Victoria Docklands, Victoria

For their safe and efficient operations, ships depend on seafarers working far from their home and family for months, sometimes years and often in harsh, isolated and dangerous conditions. The Mission to Seafarers Victoria supports seafarers in the most practical way, by provision of support. Mission to Seafarers is an international organisation that began in 1836, with 26 facilities operating in Australia.

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Contact Information

location
717 Flinders Street Docklands Victoria 3008 (map)
phone
+61 03 96297083

Contact

Opening Hours

9am-10pm

Entry Fee

Free

Location

717 Flinders Street Docklands Victoria

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The collection focus is on the Mission to Seafarers Victoria organisational history and the communities surrounding it - seafarers, the Anglican chaplaincy and philanthropic groups, such as the Ladies Habour Lights Guild. The collection spans from the late 1800s to the present day. It comprises documents, books, photographs and objects.

Significance

The Mission to Seafarers' heritage collection and building is of at least state significance (architectural). The buildings and several collection items are listed on the Victorian Heritage Register (H1496) and the National Trust Register (B4588) due to their representativeness of the Arts and Crafts and Spanish Mission styles. The collection holds historical significance because of its importance to Australia's cultural history through its representation of national maritime welfare and migration themes. The collection holds social/spiritual significance as a place of strong or special association with national and international seafaring community, and with the national and international Anglican Church movement and prominent philanthropic groups and individuals.

Margaret 12 October 2016 5:42 PM

I am researching a Mariner who arrived allegedly on the "Essex" - date unknown but it would have been before 1872 when he married at the Fitzroy Registry Office. His name was Alexander Bothwell from Aberdeen Scotland. Would there be any records going back that far? Do you research for queries ? If so, how much ? Thanks.

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1301 items

1301 items

Poster - Passing Clouds: An Afternoon with Kate Oliver

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Advertising poster for the event of launching a children's album which took place 26 May 2019.

Historical information

Kate Oliver is the granddaughter of Padre Oliver, and daughter of Rodney Oliver and chose to launch a self published album of children's songs at the Mission. She has also provided us with additional information and images of Moira Oliver, her grandmother, a keen photographer.

Significance

Rev Frank Oliver served at the Mission as senior Chaplain from 1930-1960. Rev Rodney Oliver served on the MTS board in the late 20th C./21st C.

Inscriptions & Markings

Hand written inscriptions top and lower edge in blue Texta pen:

Photograph - Memorial stained-glass window for Miss Sibthorpe Tracy

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Colour photograph of the three stained-glass windows at the back of the St Peter the Mariner's Chapel, taken from the centre, red-carpeted aisle between the pews.

Historical information

According to the 1932 Annual Report Miss Tracy "crossed the Bar" after 25 years of working for the Mission to Seamen through the Ladies Harbour Light Guild from the time the group was established in 1906. She was an office bearer for many years and died aged 75. The window dedicated to Miss Tracy was unveiled in 1933 and noted in the Annual Report of that year.

Significance

The images of stained-glass windows in the Saint Peter's the Mariner's Chapel at 717 Flinders St, are a visual history of the Mission and the people associated with it. Apart from the links with long standing and significant Melbourne women, members of the LHLG. Miss Tracy's family was instrumental in the foundation of the Women's hospital in Melbourne. These windows in particular are also known to have been designed and made by Brooks Robinson a significant company of Stained glass manufacturers with examples of their work found througout Melbourne and Victoria.

Inscriptions & Markings

details of dedications to Ms Tracy and Ms Godfrey LHLG members are also included in media field

Photograph - Sadie Wilson dancing with a seaman.

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

large b & w photograph of Sadie Wilson dancing with seaman, most likely at Mission to Seafarers event.

Digital photographs - Slide projector used in the Huntingfield Hall in the 1937 Port Melbourne Mission.

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Historical information

Photographs taken on 12 May 2019 during a visit to the Port Melbourne Historical and Preservation Society. This slide projector was rescued from the 1937 Port Melbourne Mission which was demolished in 1995. This projector was used to show transparencies similar to items 0711 and 0712.

Significance

This projector was used to entertain sailors inside the Mission.

Cufflinks

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Three round stainless steel cufflinks each comprising one larger disc attached by a link to a smaller security disc. Outer face: the larger disc has a matte finish with a shiny silver relief of a container ship in the middle and a shiny silver serrated edging. Inner face: in a square on one side of the link attachment is a small ship and the letter 'C'; on the other side of the attachment the letters 'E.P.' also in a square. Outer face of the security disc is ribbed and shiny. The inner face is identical to that of the larger link. Cufflinks are housed in a branded black gift box.

Historical information

Several items were given by a seafarer, Mr Nicholas Garlick (1926-2009) into the care of Father Brady who retired from St Pauls Cathedral, Melbourne in 2018. Father Brady later donated the collection of; objects, documents and an extensive collection of cruise ship menus (1937-end of 20thC) to the Mission via the intermediary William Hastie, volunteer at the Mission for Seafarers.

Significance

Inchcape Shipping Services traces its origins back to 1847, when two Scottish merchants from Campbeltown, William Mackinnon and Robert Mackenzie met in Calcutta and formed a general merchanting partnership, Mackinnon Mackenzie & Company (MMC). Today, the company is one of the largest maritime services providers, with some 300 offices in 68 countries and a team of over 3,000 professional and committed staff.

Inscriptions & Markings

The Inchcape insignia, the letter 'I' in bronze colour, is displayed on the outer face of the smaller disc.

Booklet - Port of Geelong 1964

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

A blue two-colour booklet with red colour title 'Port of Geelong 1964' features a graphic of a globe of the world. Along the top border of the booklet is a narrow sepia photo of a port.

Historical information

Presents an overview of shipping and freight statistics for the Port of Geelong 1964

Significance

Provides a statistical overview for a single year during a time of transition and change in shipping practice and the move to containerisation.

Inscriptions & Markings

Two-page booklet also contains printed information on the inside of both cover pages. Pages are unnumbered. In the lower right corner; 'Trade Statistics...'.

Paper Flyer, Invitation for Seafers, The Ladies' Harbour Lights Guild - The Victoria Missions to Seamen (being the Victorian Seamen's Mission and the Melbourne to Seamen amalgamated)

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Paper Flyer in blue ink inviting seafarers to use the institutes for 'Reading, Smoking and Writing ;. Also invites them to Special events including dates venues for Socials, 'Sacred Song Services' and Concerts.

Historical information

Charity organisation, Ladies' Harbour Lights Guild,was formed within The Missions to Seamen Institute to provide a home away from home, for visiting seamen. The flyer invited seafarers to use the institutes for 'Reading, Smoking and Writing and Special Events such as 'Sacred Song Service' and Concerts.

Significance

This paper flyer holds historical significance at a local level because it illustrates the events and services that seafarers were invited to use and attend organized by the Mission to Seafarers.The Ladies' Harbour Lights Guild grew to become a significant charity in Melbourne raising large amounts of money which helped to establish the current MTS building, supporting seafarers as well as attending social events such as the ones promoted in the flyer.

Inscriptions & Markings

Written in Black ink on the back: "The crues of the Cashelot" (?)

Passport - Allan Charles Quinn Passport

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

A black covered Australian passport with sixteen pages, issued in 1949. The top left hand corner of the back cover has been cut off.

Historical information

This passport was issued to Allan Quinn in 1949, by the Australian Consulate General, in New York, U.S.A. It expired on the 14th of September 1954. The passport contains information about Allan, such as his date of birth as 2nd of July, 1928, in Sydney, N.S.W, his hair colour as brown and eye colour as blue. Several of the pages have been stamped.

Significance

This passport belonged to Allan Charles Quinn and is part of a collection of letters and photograph depicting aspects of life at sea for a young man in the era immediately following World War II. It details the places Allan visited in the fifteen years it was valid.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front: AUSTRALIAN / PASSPORT printed in faded gold/yellow ink. Below this is the Australian coat of arms, printed in the same colour.

Photograph - Anzac and Success

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Brochure - The Jointless firebrick Company: PLIBRICO

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

White cover multipage commercially printed promotional brochure or booklet with ochre line graphic and black printing on white ground. Features small logo integrated with lettering between Jointless and Firebrick. There is a typed name and address of recipient / owner in lower left corner.

Historical information

Found in the G. W. Duncan collection donated to the Mission to Seafarers in 2017 see also comments on manufacturing history. This particular company was associated with the use of asbestos.

Significance

Mariner Duncan had a particular regard for the Mission to Seafarers. A plate for display on a commissioned new table at the MTSV chapel acknowledges his bequest and the material donated. Collectively the G W Duncan material includes: photographs, professional data memorabilia and written and commercially printed resources. The memorabilia relates to his career at sea and in particular the role of an engineer, including a handwritten manual of notes and references relating to the mechanical and engineering aspects and areas of responsibility for maintenance.

Inscriptions & Markings

Typed address: G.W. Duncan esq / Fifth Mechanical Engineer / ...Docks / Liverpool

Manual - Plibrico Modern Boiler Settings

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

A stapled book with black cover and the word PLIBRICO in ochre printed at top centre.

Significance

Mariner Duncan had a particular regard for the Mission to Seafarers. A plate for display on a commissioned new table at the MTSV acknowledges his bequest and the material donated. Collectively the G W Duncan material includes: photographs, professional data memorabilia and written and commercially printed resources. The memorabilia relates to his career at sea and in particular the role of an engineer, including a handwritten manual of notes and references relating to the mechanical and engineering aspects and areas of responsibility for maintenance.

Music Score - The 'M.N.' Ships Get Through

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Commercially printed single fold music score for a 2 verse song and chorus. Front cover with blue band at top and lower edge features the Merchant Navy insignia at top left with depiction in half tone blue of a Merchant ship convoy and at right a sketched depiction of head and shoulders of a Merchant Navy officer with binoculars in hand. Music score and full text printed on p.2 and 3. The back cover features text of chorus and a handwritten notation in blue ink with reference to performance of the song on a BBC programme, 'Shipmates Ashore'.

Historical information

A song composition by Helen Ellis, of Kew, first known to have been performed in 1942 at the BBC for the 'Shipmates Ashore Programme it was then published 1943.

Significance

A copy of this song and one other composition the composer Helen Ellis is held by the National Library of Australia. Promotional text also indicates that the song was performed by the notable Australian singer Peter Dawson. The song "The M.N. ships get through" carries an important acknowledgement of the oft forgotten vital role of the Merchant Navy as carrier of goods and supplies, and especially so in wartime. The publication is of special significance to the MTSV as an example of the many skilled and creative women who have supported the Missions to seafarers.

Inscriptions & Markings

Back cover-handwritten notation in blue ink: "Sung by Raymond ?(indecioherable) in the B.B.C. London / 'Shipmates Ashore' programme,1942." This inscription is found after the printed sample of chorus words accredited to Helen Ellis, Central Club, Victoria, Mission to Seamen. See images for design and printing.

Photograph - Colour photograph of the Mission to Seafarers, Flinders Street.

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Leaflet - Sea Sunday

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Quinn Envelope - Envelope

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Single envelope (0315.B) with out letter. Mum is written across the front and underlined in blue ink.H

Quinn Letter - Letter

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Two-page letter written on one sheet of buff-coloured, lined paper (0380.a), dated 12/07/48, with buff-coloured envelope (0380.b).

Historical information

Indicates a friendship at the time

Significance

Quinn Collection

Inscriptions & Markings

The envelope is addressed to Mr Allen Quinn and bears one olive-green, Swedish stamp. One the back is written Jens Lombard, Cedergatan 41, Gothenburg, Sweden

Poster - ANL Art Prize 2008

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Quinn Letter - Letter

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

One sheet of lined, buff-coloured paper (0384.a1). One edge torn. Letter dated 29/07/48, written in Swedish and signed 'Britt's mamma.' This letter was enclosed in envelope (0384.b).

Historical information

Indicates a friendship at that date

Significance

Quinn Collection

Letter - Letter from Allan Quinn to his mother

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Letter addressed to Mrs S. Quinn, "Sanlorenzo", 63 Ocean Beach, Manly, N.S.W, Australia, in three parts. Part 0154 Envelope Part 0154.1-2 Letter Pages. Both the envelope and the letter are tissue-like air mail paper. The letter begins "My Dear Mum, I received your most welcome letter...." and concludes with "Your ever loving son, Allan...". On the top right hand corner of the first page is "'Grant Hotel', GOteborg, Sweden"and is dated 25-4-46. Printed on both pages in the top left hand corner is an SkyMail logo.

Historical information

The letter was written by Allen Quinn to his mother. Allen started working as a seafarer when he was 16 years old, and frequently wrote to his mother during his travels. He also created an extensive photograph collection, which corresponds with the letters.

Significance

The letter is part of an ongoing correspondence between Allan and his mother. This letter mentions a trip to Sweden, which Allan enjoyed a great deal and a girl named "Britt" he met there. There is a photograph of Britt in the collection.

Inscriptions & Markings

On the envelope: VIA AIR MAIL, handwritten in black ink in the top left hand corner, CORREO AEREO, printed on the envelope, MRS. S QUINN, / "SAN LORENZO", / 63 OCEAN oCEACH, / MANLY, N.S.W / AUSTRALIA, handwritten in black ink. there are teo Argentinian stamps, valued at thirty-five cents and one peso, and a indecipherable postmark.

Photograph - Goonawarra loading wool in Melbourne

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Black and white photograph of the Goonawarra at berth in Melbourne, loading wool.

Historical information

Photograph of the side of the Goonawarra loading wool at Melbourne. Allan Charles Quinn worked on the Goonawarra during 1946. The Goonawarra worked between Sydney, Melbourne, Palmyro Island, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Panama Canal, Falworth, Le Havre and Goteborg.

Significance

The Allan Charles Quinn collection is a collection of letters and photographs taken and written when Allan went to sea at 16 years of age. They provide a snapshot of life at sea in the period immediately following World War II.

Inscriptions & Markings

Black in on reverse: Goonawarra loading wool at/ Melbourne 13 Jan 1946

Photograph - Kitchen of the Group of the Hastings Seafarer Centre

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Quinn Letter - Letter

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Three sheets of cream-coloured, lined paper (0800a1-3). Each sheet is written on one side only. Letter dated 1.01.1949 and headed Willoughby. The envelope (0800b) bears a lilac-coloured Australian stamp priced at one shilling and sixpence.

Significance

Quinn Collection

Inscriptions & Markings

0800.b is addressed to M.S.Fenris C/- Thor Ekerka Co. , 19 Rector Street, New York, post-marked 25-01-1949 and franked with the slogan 'Road carelessness kills'

Poster - Special Lantern Services 1917

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Photograph - The Mission from Flinders Street in 1927

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Photograph - Catherine Herron, a member of the Ladies Harbour Light Guild and a friend

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Black and White Gloss print photograph of two young women in dirndle skirts and blouses, circa 1950s, standing in the outer porch of the Mission to Seafarers Building at 717 Flinders St, Melbourne.

Historical information

Subjects: Contemporary friends of David Conolly, Lay Reader at the MTS, possibly members of the Harbour Light Guild and dance hostesses at dances for seafarers staged at the Mission on a weekly basis.

Significance

Visual Record of Ladies Harbour Light Guild member and dance hostesses of the 1950s

Inscriptions & Markings

Hand written in black texta; Catherine Herron, a member of the Ladies Harbour Light Guild and a friend

Photograph - Missions to Seamen Flag

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Partially faded black and white photograph of The Missions to Seamen flag. The photograph has a white border, and the pictured flag reads "THE MISSIONS TO SEAMEN" with the Flying Angel logo in the centre.

Historical information

As the current Mission to Seafarers was originally called "The Missions to Seamen", this photograph shows an original flag with the Flying Angel Club logo on the front. The Flying Angel Club has been a universal environment for seafarers at every major port, and a place they can recognise as a place of respite from the seas.

Significance

This is an example of an original Missions to Seamen flag dated between... and ...

Inscriptions & Markings

On the reverse side of the photograph is a stamp which is positioned at the top right and is upside down; it reads "H353". The photograph has discolouring around the edges (on both the front and reverse sides of the photograph), which is more extensive on the left side. There is also a large tear to the bottom left of the photograph which has taken away part of the image.

Photograph

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Photograph, The Ladies' Harbour Lights Guild - Lillie and Olive Duncan

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Black and white photograph of Lillie Romana Duncan and Olive Harriet Duncan. Olive is on the left wearing a dark coloured dress with a 'V' neck, little coloured coat and gloves, carrying a clutch under her arm and wearing a dark hat. Olive (on the right) is wearing a ladies' suit and gloves, carrying a clutch under her arm, wearing a dark coloured hat and a brooch at her neck. The photograph has been turned into a postcard, complete with printed postcard division on reverse.

Historical information

This photograph of Lillie and Olive Duncan is one of a number featuring the sisters. They were active members of the Ladies' Harbour Lights Guild during the 1920s and 1930s and the objects we have relating to the women highlight the relationships forged between seafarers and those who offered their time and energy to the Mission.

Significance

The Ladies' Harbour Lights Guild was instrumental in raising the necessary funds for the construction of the current Mission to Seafarers building. They also worked to provide the tangible elements of seafarers' welfare, such as procuring donations of goods and money. However, their most important work, in many ways, was to provide company, conversation and support to seafarers. Lillie, Olive and their entire family were involved with the Mission over an extended period of time.

Inscriptions & Markings

In pencil on reverse: Lillie Morgan/Olive Hall/RHS/(DUNCAN) Printed: POST CARD/CORRESPONDENCE/ADDRESS

Book - Hammond Bible 1874 (1441A) and card (1441B)

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Morocco Leather bound large Bible with gold edged pages and reinforced ridged spine. Pale blue calligraphic inscription on preliminary page date 1874

Inscriptions & Markings

Pencil inscription handwritten on recto of card: "Nellie Hammond""

Photograph - Xmas Day at Brighton 1917

Mission to Seafarers Victoria, Docklands

Small monochrome outdoor photograph, depicting a small group of reasonably formally dressed men and women, gathered for the photograph to be taken

Historical information

Gathering of seafarers and two ladies on New year's day outing to Brighton, 1917.

Inscriptions & Markings

Xmas Day at Brighton 1917 The "Cricketers"