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Orbost & District Historical Society Orbost, Victoria

The Society operates a Museum which is located in the Council Business Centre/Library in Ruskin Street, Orbost. PO Box 284 Orbost 3888.

The collection mainly relates to European settlement history since 1870s in the Orbost district and a collection of artefacts donated by local people and relating to families. The Society does research, publishes books and newsletters, displays and exhibitions, holds meetings.

Contact Information

location
PO Box 284 Orbost Victoria 3888 (map)
phone
+61 (03) 5154 2474

Contact

Opening Hours

9am - 5pm weekdays

Entry Fee

free

Location

Ruskin Street Orbost Victoria

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A collection of items donated by local families.

Susan Lee Milbourne 20 January 2013 8:08 PM

I would like to trace family farm of Woller family in Orbost district around 1940 to 1945. Could you please advise how to do this. Yours sincerely Lee Milbourne.

Orbost Administrator 23 January 2013 11:36 AM

To Susan Milbourne I can ask for information on the WOLLER family at the next meeting of the Hist. Society in February and get back to you. Please send your email address to me: mayleatch@dcsi.net.au

Karen Harrison 12 February 2013 10:15 PM

Hello. I am trying find information on my husbands great grandfather Lewis Henry Hudson. It has been said by family members he joined a circus in Orbost possibly sometime in 1894. I am hoping to discover if Orbost had it's own circus or if there is any way of finding out if there was a circus in the town between 1894-1900. Any help would be gratefully appreciated. Thank you.

Orbost Administrator 25 February 2013 4:54 PM

Karen Harrison Orbost definitely did not have its own circus. I suggest that you have a look through TROVE newspapers to find any references to circuses coming to this area of Victoria eg. to Bairnsdale or Orbost.

Kay Bristow 5 June 2013 4:00 AM

I think you'll find it is the Waller family, Peter Scott at Mc Laughlins Rd. will know as he is a cousin of Wallers. Kirsten resides in Maffra and her parents are also nearby, Kirsten Waller is in the phone book as a naturopath, regards, Kay Bristow

Peter topouzakis 18 June 2013 8:21 PM

Would like to trace the Drossou bros.

Orbost Administrator 19 June 2013 1:50 PM

To Peter Topouzakis If you send me your email address, I can send you some information on the Drossou family who had businesses in Orbost, including a cordial factory. orbosthistoricalsociety@hotmail.com

Des Smith 7 September 2015 1:10 PM

Hi There.... I am trying to trace some information about a shield that I have in my posession. The inscription reads "Presented by Residents of Jarrahmone to Mrs G.K. Smith in memory of the late Pte G.K. Smith" Geoffrey Kennedy Smith was my grand uncle, fatally wounded in Gallipoli (died London Dec, 1915). This plaque would assume that he was married, but I can find nothing anywhere in the family archives. Do you have anything in your records that might assist my search? Regards Des

Karen Black 8 January 2016 3:37 PM

l recently found an article in TROVE, about a Jim BRENTWOOD, killed by the blacks, in the The Snowy River and Tambo and Croajngolong Gazette, (Orbost, Vic:1890-1811), Saturday 20 October, (sorry can't see a date). Is there anyway l might be able to find out this person, waiting to hear from someone, Karen

Irene Chase 28 February 2016 6:00 PM

Hello. My parents, and two siblings moved to Orbost in about 1955. I was born there on the 4 March 1956. As this year is my 60th birthday, we are going to come and stay in Orbost for the weekend. My father Alan Chase, had a 24 hr Taxi service, with four taxi's. I have one picture of three of the taxi's decorated for a wedding. The Depot was in Nicholson St. I am guessing that it was also our home, but I don't have a number for the house. Mum recalls it being opposite the tennis courts. If someone could help. I would love to see if it was still there. They also owned a milk bar or cafe, again in Nicholson St. Dad's business card lists the taxi stands being located at the Cosy Cafe, and Cardillio's Cafe. A free phone was located at Steed's Store. Any information, pictures etc of Orbost around this time would be gratefully appreciated. My only other possession, apart from my Infant Welfare Centre Book, is a beautiful hand made woven basket. It was payment for a taxi ride. It is much treasured. I am looking forward to our trip. Any information, sincerely appreciated. Irene Chase

Bernadette Francese Robertson 5 March 2016 1:06 PM

I'm after Marlo football photos for my Dad (John Francese). He and my Uncle (Charlie Francese) played for Marlo in the 50's.... The Francese family, Peter, Maria (buried in the Orbost Cemetery), John, Charlie, Mary, Pat and Joe ran 2 dairy-farms on the Marlo road. My Great-Aunt, Eugenia Chirico ran a boarding house in Orbost. I would love any pics or info! I was born in Orbost, 1961. I still have my infant welfare book!!!!

Garry Hurle 6 March 2016 10:43 AM

I would like to hear from anyone who can inform me about the Orbost Gift, a sprint race which used to be held there. I would like to know if it was run in conjunction with the Agricultural Show and particularly what year it started. I know that a friend of mine won the race in the sixties.

Patricia Bates 14 March 2016 1:29 PM

Hello, I am interested in the Rail History Exhibition I've read about in the March Senior newspaper. I have been researching my Family History for many years and my Grandfather, Albert Edward Carson worked on the Railway from 1914 to 1919. I have found him on the Victorian Electoral Rolls for the Division of Gippsland, Subdivision of Bruthen, working as a labourer and a navvy. I would like to attend your Exhibition in April. I would come on public transport and VLine and probably stay over night. Would you be able to tell me what accommodation I would be able get in walking distance to your hall, perhaps an hotel where I could get an evening meal. It sounds a very interesting exhibition and I would like to see it. Patricia Bates, RSL Village, 66 Sage Drive, Frankston South 3199 PS. I didn't know where to put my email.

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2518 items

2518 items

photo frame

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A very elaborate, handmade photo frame made of small pieces of wood put together with pegs.

Historical information

Made by a soldier while convalescing after being wounded in WW1.

Significance

This personal item gives an insight into the human element of World War 1.

pin cushion

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

Handmade pin cushion with flowered tapestry centre. Tulle covers the whole cushion and has been embroidered. Lace sewn around whole cushion. Backing is satin. Has an assortment of hatpins.

Significance

This item is an example of a handcrafted item and reflects the needlework skills of women in the families of the early settlers.

brushes

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

Two brushes. 1497.1 is an oval shaped hair brush with a gold coloured frame It has a wooden dark blue painted oval inset. The natural bristles are light coloured. 1497.2 is a matching clothes brush - rectangular shaped with a an inset of dark blue.

Significance

This set is an example of personal grooming items commonly used in the first half of the 20th century.

bottle

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A brown glass bottle which has a screw thread on the top of the neck.

Significance

Australia was not self sufficient in glass making until the turn of the 20th century and many bottles were made overseas and shipped to Australia with their contents and when emptied were re-filled with other company’s products. This bottle has an aesthetic element in that the shape and colour are visually appealing. It reflects the type of glassware that was in circulation in the first 20th century.

Inscriptions & Markings

On the base - M684

books - Potpourri Poetry & Writing of Gippsland Women

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

Two books of poetry and writings by women of East Gippsland. 1833.1 is Volume 2 and has a red cover. 1833.2 is Volume 3 and has a blue cover. Both books are edited by: Marie Munday, Betty Ory and Dorothy Watt.

iron

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A fuel iron with a small cream-porcelained body and black handle . The back is a bulb-shaped container for holding the fuel. This is a kerosene operated Tilley Model DN 250n iron. It has a regulating generator which enables the user to control the heat.

light

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A large dark blue/purple spherical light shade made of glass. It has aluminium fittings.

black and white photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A very creased and crumpled black / white photograph of a band in uniforms. The back row is standing, the middle sitting on a seat while a row of younger boys are sitting, cross-legged on the grass at the front. All have instruments. They are in front of a wooden building.

Historical information

This photograph of the Orbost Municipal Band was taken for the 1937 Back To Orbost celebrations. The band is wearing new uniforms, bought especially for the occasion and for subsequent use. The double-breasted navy jackets have three pairs of silver buttons, three silver stripes on the cuffs and a silver lyre on each lapel. the bandmaster's stripes were gold. The jacket was worn with a white shirt and a bow tie. The caps were navy blue with a silver braided band and a central lyre. There were 29 members at this time. The first Orbost Brass Band was formed in 1889. Around 1908 the town band split and the Orbost Workers' Band was formed. Eventually the two bands merged in 1913 to reform as the Orbost Municipal Band under conductorship of Charles Spink. The band continued for many years but was later disbanded and again reformed. This was to happen a number of times, the last time being in 1961 and continuing through to the late 1970's. (Further info and Ref: In Times Gone By - Deborah Hall)

Significance

The Orbost Municipal Orbost Band played a major role in the Orbost community activities. Charles Spink made sure each soldier returning home from the 1914 to 1918 war was welcomed home in front of the Shire Hall to the music of the Orbost Municipal Band. The band played in the main street on most Friday nights. The various Orbost bands over the years played a major role in community activities providing entertainment and musical experiences for the many members.

Inscriptions & Markings

on front - "Orbost Municipal Band 4.3.37"

bottles

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

Two square shaped bottles with rounded shoulders. They are lipped and probably had glass stoppers.2376.1 is pink and 2376.2 is a light brown colour.

Inscriptions & Markings

2376.1 - on base 4 2376.2 - on base - 6

framed black and white photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A large framed black / white photograph of the Paddle Steamer Curlip and a barge on a river. The barge is being loaded with maize through a large chute. In the background is the Snowy River bridge. the frame is wood. There is also a copy.

Historical information

The P.S. Curlip was built by Samuel Richardson & Sons at a Tabbara sawmill in 1889. Alan Richardson, shown in the photograph, was the captain. It was operated along the Snowy River in Australia's Gippsland region between 1890 and 1919, before being washed out to sea, and broken on Marlo beach, by a flash flood in 1919. James Winchester was born in Geelong in 1856. He first sailed into Marlo, aged 15 and returned in the 1870's. he worked on the snagging punt on the Snowy River and also on the Paddle Steamer Curlip which towed the barges to collect the maize grown along the Snowy River. Wooden chutes were constructed along the river banks to load bagged maize onto the barges. The bags of maize were sent down the chutes into the waiting barges.

Significance

This is a pictorial record of the iconic Paddle Steamer Curlip which has a significant association with Orbost. It records the method of loading maize onto barges through a wooden cchute.

Inscriptions & Markings

on back of copy - " Jim Winchester, Alan & Frank Richardson, Curlip - barge & chute for loading maize"

bottle

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A bocksbeutel - a a flagon-shaped wine bottle in the form of a flattened ellipsoid. It is a clear green glass bottle which is seamed.

Historical information

The Bocksbeutel ("goat's bag") bottle has been used since 1726 to store Franconian wines from south-east Germany. The Franken wine-growing region is in the north-west of Germany’s historic state of Bavaria. More than 40% of all Franken wines are bottled in the Bocksbeutel, which is often described as flagon-like in appearance. It is said that the bottle is so shaped to prevent it rolling away from its owner. Only Franken and nearby villages in northern Badenare allowed to use the Bocksbeutal, with selected areas in Portugal, Italyand Greece permitted to employ their own variations. (ref www,winesearcher)

Inscriptions & Markings

Base - 3 8A 313 700 mls

certificate

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A laminated copy of a merit certificate presented to Colin McLaughlin No 443282 for Form !! Course of Study. 30.11.1945. It is signed by J.R.Jones (head teacher) and F. Whelpston (inspector of schools)

Historical information

The original certificate was issued to Colin McLaughlin by the Education Department, Victoria on 30.11.1945. Colin Francis McLaughlin was born January 5, 1933 in Orbost and died May 2, 2008 in Ringwood. He was the son of Phillip Henry McLaughlin and Ethel Olive Morgan . This copy was produced by John Phillips for the Orbost Secondary College Centenary Celebration 28/29 April 2102.

Significance

Orbost High School / Orbost Secondary College has played a significant part in the education of senior students in the Orbost district . It is the sole senior educational institution. This certificate is representative of its history.

Inscriptions & Markings

On back : Produced by John Phillips for the Orbost Secondary College Centenary Celebration on Saturday 28th April and Sunday 29th April 2012

meat mincer

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A cast iron food mincer with a wooden handle. It has a funnel shaped cup at the top through which the pieces of meat are pushed to come out of the side. The wooden handle is turned to help this action. It has one blade. The mincer clamps to a flat surface by a hand operated vice/screw.

Historical information

This mincer was donated to the Slab Hut (Visitor Information Centre) as a display item.

Significance

This domestic kitchen appliance is typical of the period when food processing was done at home. It would have been before the time of mass food processing factories.

Inscriptions & Markings

MODEL No 2

book - A Pair of Primroses by Mrs Pitt

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A grey- covered hard back book with black and orange illustration. The title is in orange print.

Historical information

This book was won by Daisy Close, born in 1899, of Murrangowar. She was Ethel Pike's mother. Daisy Close married Ed Jensen. The Jensen family lived at Murrangowar in the 1890's. they were farmers and relatives still live in Orbost.

Significance

This book, together with a writing box form part of the history of the Close family who were early settlers at Murrangowar in the late 19th century.

Inscriptions & Markings

Prize awarded to Daisy Close 1st class For most popular child in the school SS 3693 Murrangowar Dec 12th-1911

hook

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

An aluminium wall hook with two screwing holes - one each side.

Inscriptions & Markings

ECV inside a hexagon ; WD 2414 A.J. P/L

black and white photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A black / white photograph of four men working on the construction of a new bridge and its pylons

Historical information

This photograph shows the construction of the first bridge over the Snowy River at Orbost being built. the first pile bridge over the Snowy River was just completed by Mr Jim Granter when the 1891 flood took out the centre,. There were differences of opinion as to whether the council should pay . The Shire Secretary, Mr John Draffin, persuaded them to honour their obligations. Mr Granter and Mr Clarke finished it as a suspension bridge which was opened by Mrs William Watt. Soon after a mob of cattle stampeded, the weight snapped the cable, letting one side sag. Mr R.P. Cameron repaired it and this bridge remained until 1922. "In 1890 the contract for a bridge was let to Mr James Granter for £1450. This structure with additions and improvements made to it was to cost the ratepayers about £2,500, and its erection was proceeded with in a very satisfactory manner until, just as the greater-part of the work had been completed, the flood of 1891 came down on it, piling up mountains of logs, timber and debris against the piers, which had not been made wide enough apart to allow for. contingencies of this kind. The structure held out bravely until the turn of the flood and then gave way with a crash, about five bays from the centre disappearing in the stream." ( Snowy River Mail August 12 1893)

Significance

This is a pictorial record of the construction of the first bridge over the Snowy River.

Inscriptions & Markings

on back - "first bridge - 1st pile being driven"

photographs

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A set of six heritage posters from 125 Years of The weekly Times. They are dated Sept. 13 1994. The photographs have been colour tinted from glass negative plates.

Historical information

The Weekly Times was first published on September 11, 1869, by a group of Melbourne businessmen who owned the now-defunct Daily Telegraph, with the stated aim to be a “journal of literature, sport, agriculture, science and politics”. A series of special editions and special prints were produced for the 125th anniversary.

Significance

These photographs are a useful reference tool.

plates

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

One small Broadhurst Dickens Series side plate Mr Pickwick Glides One large dinner plate. Both have white background and oak tree branches as border. Small plate illustration in centre is of people sliding on ice. Large plate centre illustration is David Copperfield + friends on a horse buggy riding bthrough town.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front of smaller plate - Mr Pickwick Glides Front of larger plate - My first fall in life - David Copperfield Back of both "Ironstone Broadhurst Staffordshire England. Dickens series underglaze...

plate

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

White porcelain plate with pink and green floral design on border and centre. Small hanging hole at top.

Inscriptions & Markings

P 3240

child's rocking chair

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A child's rocking chair, frame of round wood and highly finished, seat and backrest of coffee coloured canvas, coiled springs are made of metal.

Historical information

This chair is presumed to be Ruth Richardson's chair from when she was a child.

trombone

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A brass trombone, musical instrument. Appears to be complete apart from a mouthpiece which is missing.

Historical information

This trombone was used by the first Orbost Brass Band, formed 1889.

Significance

associated with Orbost brass bands. The various Orbost bands over the years played a major role in community activities providing entertainment and musical experiences for the many members. Primary Significance Criteria

Inscriptions & Markings

At the horn end, the words ACME MODEL CLASS A 76075

black and white photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A black / white photograph of an elderly woman in a dark dress sitting outside with a young girl next to her. Yhe photograph is oval shaped and mounted on light grey card.

Historical information

The photograph shows Miss Clarice Ingram with her grandmother Mrs Sivewright on her 95th birthday.

Inscriptions & Markings

on back - Clarrie Ingram (night Tues) wife..................95th birthday

framed photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A framed sepia head and shoulders photograph of King George V in military uniform and wearing medals. It is in a wooden frame with decorated edging and has a cardboard stand.

Historical information

George V was the first king of the House of Windsor. George V (George Frederick Ernest Albert; 3 June 1865 – 20 January 1936) was King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, and Emperor of India, from 6 May 1910 until his death in 1936. He was the second son of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII), and the grandson of the British monarch, Queen Victoria

Significance

Saving an item dedicated to the royal family is typical of the general feeling of respect and admiration felt by the rural communities towards the British Royal Family.

inkwells

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

Three glass inkwells. .1-blue tinted with broken top. .2 green tinted broken at top. .3 clear glass with symmetrical design.

Historical information

Inkwells were generally more decorative than ink bottles and designed to be more permanent.

Significance

We have mostly dispensed with ink bottles and quills. This item is an example of early stationery equipment commonly used in schools, households and commercial enterprises.

black and white photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A black / white photograph on a grey buff card. It shows a large group of people sitting or standing on the floor of what appears to be a church hall.

Historical information

This is a photograph of the "Diggers Reunion" for the "Back To" celebrations held in Orbost in March 1937.

Significance

This is a pictorial record of a significant event in Orbost's history.

Inscriptions & Markings

on back - "Mrs Mars. View St ?????????" on front - "Diggers Reunion Back to Celebrations Orbost 3.3.37"

certificate

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A certificate of service awarded to Mrs F. Armistead for being a volunteer in the Air Observers Corps. It was awarded on 20 Sept, 1945 for one year's service.

Historical information

The Volunteer Air Observers Corps was an Australian air defence organisation of World War II.It was formed on 31 December 1941 to support the Royal Australian Air Force by sighting and observing aircraft over Australia.It swiftly established observation posts across Australia and provided information to the RAAF's regional air control posts. As the threat to Australia declined its role was expanded to include coast watching, assisting air traffic control and weather reporting. The corps was staffed by civilian volunteers and reached a peak strength of 24,000 personnel and 2,656 observation posts in 1944. After the end of the war the VAOC was reduced to a cadre in December 1945 and was disbanded on 10 April 1946.

Significance

The Volunteer Air Observers Corps was an Australian air defence organisation of World War II. This certificate is a record of the participation of members of the Orbost district. Anita Armistead, wife of Francis Armistead had a son, Sydney, who served as a gunner in Malaysia during WW11.

Inscriptions & Markings

For King and Empire Presented to Mrs F. Armistead by the ROYAL AUSTRALIAN AIR FORCE As a record and in appreciation of patriotic response to the call of country by serving in the VOLUNTEER AIR OBSERVERS CORPS This 20th day of September 1945 signed G. Jones Air Vice Marshall Chief of Air Staff signed ? Unit Commanding Officer

lace collar and dress front

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A white cotton lace collar and dress front. V neck opening.

Historical information

During the late 19th -early 20th century detachable collars were a way of embellishing a garment. White lace was popular for collars and cuffs.

Significance

This item is an example of a handcrafted item and reflects the needlework skills of women in the part of the 20th century.

black and white photograph

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A black / photograph of trees and a beach with rocks and the ocean in the background. It appears to be a copy of a postcard and has been hand trimmed.

Historical information

this photograph is of Cape Conran in Far East Gippsland. It appears to be a copy of a commercial postcard available to tourists or East Gippsland residents to send to friends or relatives.Cameras in the early 20th century were not a common family possession and a postcard was a common souvenir and way of sending a short message.

Significance

Postcards form a vital part of social and historical records for researchers.

cheese mold

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

Very rusted round tin with detachable bottom and lid for easy removal of cheese. Small eyelets on each side and large handles each side. Top and bottom lids have holes in them to allow moisture to escape.

Significance

This domestic kitchen appliance is typical of the period when food processing was done at home. It would have been before the time of mass food processing factories

certificate

Orbost & District Historical Society , Orbost

A white paper certificate of conveyance with black print and hand-written details from George Beattie to Peter Smith. There is a wax seal on the second page.

Historical information

This is a certificate of indenture, a legal agreement, between George Beattie of Forest Creek, near Castlemaine in the colony of Victoria, and Peter Christian Smith of the same place. Both were miners. Beattie was the vendor and Smith paid twenty-five pounds for a land parcel. The contract was witnessed by John Hedderwick, a law clerk in Castlemaine. There is a record in the Mount Alexander Mail, dated Wed. 22 April 1857, of George Beattie purchasing land for three pounds, sixteen and sixpence in Castlemaine and that it was withdrawn. Records also show that a Peter and Thomas Smith farmed in Sandon near Castlemaine.

Significance

This item is a useful research tool as it a hand-written record of part of the history of the gold fields region of Victoria.