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Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives Port Fairy, 3284

The society was formed in 1963 as a centre for local research into the early history of the town and it's pioneer families. From modest beginnings, the organisation has grown to a membership of more than 120, with a much wider range of interests.

In 1992 the society was able to negotiate the lease of the historic Courthouse building in Gipps Street, Port Fairy, which was renamed The History Centre we have now decided to rename the building “Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives to better describe our activities.

The Courthouse is one of over fifty buildings in Port Fairy classified by the National Trust as essential to the heritage of Australia and which must be preserved. It was built in 1859, with the portico added in 1869, and a further three rooms at the rear in 1874, to make the building as it is today. At the time of construction, it was the only Courthouse in the Western District of Victoria, and housed sittings of the Supreme Court and County Courts as well as General Sessions. It remained in use until 1988, when its last function, as a Licensing Court, was transferred to Warrnambool.

Much of the work of the society involves the development of the Courthouse as a museum and archives, and includes participation in the Museum Accreditation Program with which we have been accredited since 1998. The main courtroom houses a display of the original court furniture, with figures in costume. Five other rooms contain both permanent and temporary exhibitions on themes such as the early pioneers of the district, the whaling era in Port Fairy, local shipping and wrecks along the coast.

Contact Information

location
Port Fairy Historical Society P.O. Box 152 Port Fairy VIC 3284 (map)
phone
+61 0355682263

Contact

Opening Hours

2pm to 5pm Wednesday and Saturday. Sunday 10.30am to 12.30pm winter hours 2 pm to 4 pm Saturdays only (July, August) This year we will be open during Folk Festival details will follow closer to the time

Entry Fee

$5 adult 12 - 18 years $1 Under 12 free

Location

30 Gipps Street Port Fairy 3284

View on Google Maps

Port Fairy and District Local History is our focus from earliest records to present day Documents, photographs, objects, books

Significance

Very early settlement of Victoria, provided one of the first members of the Victorian parliament, one of a very few settlements based on Special Surveys

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1280 items

Chain, watch

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Gold linked watch chain in the two parts joined with a small ring

Historical information

not recorded

Photograph - South Beach showing play equipment

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Photograph - South Beach 1903

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Wide view of coastline at South Beach

Significance

Represents coastline at South Beach in 1903

Photograph - Leura

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Sepia Photograph

Historical information

Leura homestead owned by Dick and Mary Fry. They appear on the verandah in this photo

Photograph - Port Fairy Football Club Premiership Team 1925

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Wooden frame with flowers pokerworked; players individually framed around edge with team in centre

Historical information

Individual players photo's plus group photo of Port Fairy Football team. This is a record of rare sporting event - Port Fairy winning premiership

Inscriptions & Markings

P.F.F.C. Premiers 1925

Photograph - Caravan park

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white photograph

Riding Habit

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Brown serge jacket and jodhpurs with brown cotton laced trouser legs, Cardboard box and wrapping paper with label and postage stamp. Large bakelite buttons on jacket and sleeves. Button sides and laced legs on jodhpurs. 2 white stocks worn around the neck (like a cravat)

Historical information

Worn by Mrs J.R.Philip at Mount Hamilton Nerrim Nerrim and "Ascot heath" Dartmoor. habit Probably pre-dates WW1. Mrs Philip's father was Alexander Marshall, Minister of Scots Church Collins Street Melbourne

Inscriptions & Markings

W.S.Taylor- Taylor &Mercer Ballarat Label on wrapping (torn?) - Miss Martin Costumiere -"Kardinia House" Geelong with green 3 penny Australian Stamp handwrtten- Mrs J.R.Philip Mt Hamilton Nerrim Nerrim

Perfume phial in case

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

metal perfume holder with glass bottle

Historical information

not recorded

Black & white photograph - Pt Fairy Girl Guides and Brownies 1948

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white photograph

Photograph - Rosebrook bridge opening - 1950

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Photograph - Woodbine - rearside view

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Photograph - Lady Loch

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white photograph

Historical information

Government steamer serving lighthouses along the coast and in Bass Straight Steamer, 146 nhp. Built 1886. Built In Melbourne. Tonnage 487g 337n. Built By Campbell, Sloss & M'Cnn Dimensions182.7 x 24.6 x 14.4 Demise Campbell, Sloss & McCann, Sth Melbourne. Lighthouse tender. Later: Victorian Government (Department of Public Works), reg. Melbourne. Later Moreton Tug & Lighter Co. 1962: Scuttled at Dunwich, Moreton Bay, Qld.

Photograph - David Esler McLellan Mayor of Port Fairy 1911,1914

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black & white portrait

Historical information

David Esler McLellan Mayor of Port Fairy 1911,1914

Photograph - Tennyson, Patrick - Mayor Port Fairy 1891, 1896-1899

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white photograph

Historical information

Patrick Tennyson Mayor of Port Fairy 1891 & 1896-1899 Owner of Tennyson's Hotel in Sackville Street

Significance

Mayor of Port Fairy, Owner of Hotel in Early Port Fairy

Pan,Preserving

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black iron preserving pan lined with white enamel

Historical information

not recorded

Photograph - On the common (near South Beach) 1926

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Black & white photograph - PF Gardens Rotunda

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Photograph - Entrance to Gardens (1926)

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Photograph - Talara

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white Photograph

Former Customs House Cnr Campbell & Gipps Sts

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

coloured photograph

Photograph - Courthouse & Customhouse

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white photograph

Historical information

This view of the Customs house and Court house also includes the wreck bell which hung on a plinth outside the Customs house until the 1970's. The wreck bell was rung to alert the town that a ship was in trouble in the bay

Photograph - Pathway in Gardens, Port Fairy

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Photograph

Photograph - 1859 Named Wooden Doors

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Coloured photograph

Historical information

Signed by the town builders Thomas Southcombe & Alex Ingram

Inscriptions & Markings

The door is signed by the builders Thomas Southcombe and Alex Ingram

bag

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Dilly bag woven from grasses. Woven in one piece with decoration near bottom and around top. Plaited handle

Historical information

Hearsay-- Item was given to a white lady as a gift

Model Ship

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Handmade wooden model brig with small attached stand

Historical information

not recorded

Tins

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Tins

Historical information

Used by Mrs Florence Kelly, Barkly Street Port Fairy

Inscriptions & Markings

a, Large 5lb, tin "Poulticine" empty. b, 1lb, tin "Parsons" baking powder

Brooch

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black mourning brooch; Hand holding wreath; (No clip)

Clock

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

American clock,wooden case, engraved glass door,plain gold decoration (complete with key)

Historical information

Donated by Mr Hanson

Inscriptions & Markings

ST USA

Photograph - SS Lawrence

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black & white photograph

Historical information

The mining company in Seddonville New Zealand purchased a small steamer, SS Lawrence, to transport coal, but in 1891 the vessel was wrecked at the mouth of the Mōkihinui river. The remains of the ship can sometimes be seen today at low tide on the beach on the south side of the Mōkihinui River mouth.

Photograph postcard - South Beach (postcard dated 1916)

Port Fairy Historical Society Museum and Archives, Port Fairy

Black and white post card

Historical information

This post card shows the bathing boxes in 1916 with swings in the distance