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Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum Tatura, VIC

Tatura Museum houses a unique collection based on 3 main themes which are: the History of Irrigation in Victoria's Goulburn Valley, the Local and Family History of Tatura and District since settlement and the history of the seven World War 2 Prisoner of War and Internment Camps and the Garrison and Hospital which were established in this area.
Tatura Museum is not the average small town museum. Our collection includes ONLY items which have a connection to Tatura.
Whether it is Local, Family, Irrigation or War Time Camps history every article on display has a direct connection with Tatura and is not just part of a general historical display.
The collection and our reference library are a valuable source of research material for academics, school children, relatives and former residents.

Contact Information

location
PO Box 156 Tatura VIC 3616 (map)
phone
+61 +613 58242111

Contact

Opening Hours

Monday - Friday 1.00pm - 3.00pm Saturday / Sunday / Public Holidays 2.00pm - 4.00pm Bus trips and groups by arrangement

Entry Fee

$5 Adults $ 4 concession $ 2 children under 12

Location

49 Hogan S Tatura VIC

View on Google Maps

Photographs, art and craft work, records, recollections and other archival material recovered from the former Prisoners of War and Internees in the Tatura Area during WW2, many of whom remained in Australia after their release.
These include the collection of 54 works of Leonhard Adam completed over a 50 year period and donated by his daughter Mary-Clare Murvitz of Israel and a collection of war time sketches by Georg Rosenkranz.
We have many artefacts and documents relating to the HSK Kormoran and HMAS Sydney as the Kormoran survivors were prisoners of war in Tatura.
Books, records, maps, photographs and information on the history of Irrigation in Victoria's Goulburn Valley.
Books, photographs, memorabilia, maps and recollections regarding the Local History of Tatura and District including major industries and local families.

Significance

Much of the collection has originated from activities of prisoners from within the camps, and so it is unique and irreplaceable. Many of the internees brought to these camps from overseas countries were intellectuals, academically well qualified in their professions and some were gifted sports persons or in their trade. Many of these people chose to remain in Australia and have added immensely to the education and culture of this country. Their stories, most involving escape from Nazism, are inspirational.

The story of the development of Irrigation in the Western Goulburn Valley is the story of the first irrigation scheme in Victoria, and lead to the creation of the State Rivers and Water Supply Commission, and its involvement in Irrigation.

Guy McIntosh 24 January 2015 5:44 PM

Hello there, I have in my collection a threepence coin and with a swastika hole punched in the centre of the coin, it also is stamped REGD:787 on the back, can you please assist me in my research if you know anything about the 1910 three pence coin, Thankyou

Guy McIntosh 24 January 2015 5:44 PM

Hello there, I have in my collection a threepence coin and with a swastika hole punched in the centre of the coin, it also is stamped REGD:787 on the back, can you please assist me in my research if you know anything about the 1910 three pence coin, Thankyou

Caitlin 25 August 2015 7:46 PM

I have the same threepence coin. It has a swastika punched into it and also REGD787 stamped on the back. In my research, I haven't found any information about it. If anyone can help with this, it would be greatly appreciated.

Sandra M SMITH 12 October 2019 8:26 PM

At my own time and expense I compiling a profile on the service men and women on the Weethalle NSW War Memorial. This is not for profit but to give the village a legacy to be used for Commemoration,Education, Enjoyment and as a Resource tool. One of the men listed is Irishman Francis Irvine who was KIA at Tobruk. Private IRVINE's sister was the wife of Johann Heinrich SCHMITZ who died while in the internee camp at Tatura. Records show you are holding a document(s) on this gentleman. Is it possible to have a copy of what you have, to add to his brother-in-law's file please. The document is in an black 4 ring folder with your Registration Number C0713. I thank you for your assistance and consideration. All material will be professionally acknowledged. Sandra

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5337 items

5337 items

Booklet "The Unusual Village" - Das Seltsame Dorf "The Unusual Village"

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Handmade book with buff coloured front and back covers and lined pages inside. Held together with multi - coloured wool threaded through punched holes. Each page is handwritten in German and illustrated on each page. (Translation included). Child's sketch of the camp on the cover.

Historical information

Book written by nine year old Marianne Kirsch about everyday life in the Internment camp

Inscriptions & Markings

Das Seltsame Dorf ("The Unusual village")

Report on Prisoner of War, Selini Selino (Pte) - 6 pages of information detailing the war records of Sileno Sileni (Pte), PWI 56949

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

6 X A4pages of information with details of Pte Sileno Silenis' war record.

Historical information

These pages have been copied from Volume 75 (part 3 ) from the National Archives of Australia - fact sheets nos 7 & 8

Significance

War records of Pte Sileno Sileni PWI 56949

Carving - Eagle & Swastika

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Carving on local stone of an eagle & swastika. The word "Tatura" is carved on the bottom edge and '1940' above the eagle.

Historical information

Found at camp 13 Tatura

Inscriptions & Markings

1940 , Tatura

book - Five Stories by W.W.Jacobs

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Small book with hard cover, covered with brown paper. The left side pages are in Dutch with English on the right side

Historical information

This book was provided to "Dunera" boy Werner Haarburger by International Student Services to help Internees learn English. He was most appreciative.

Significance

This book is a series of five stories in Dutch and English.

Inscriptions & Markings

Werner Haarburger, Tatura. November 1944

Book - Growing Up With The Trees. A Shepparton Story

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Soft cover book, with colourful front cover, featuring a montage of family photographs. 169 pages with many B/W photos

Significance

Life on a farm in the Shepparton area

Book - Disturbance Camp 3

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Black cover A 4 booklet containing photocopied pages.

Historical information

This book contains copies of the official Reports of the Disturbance camp 3.

Poster - POW and internment camps across Australia

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

1 laminated sheet of paper depicting POW and internment camps across Australia. 1939-1947. Is contained in a large white cylinder.

Historical information

Poster depicts scenes of the various internment camps around Australia, including camp layouts and geographic information. Mad as part of the project Temporal Cities led by Professor Anoma Pieris.

Document - Camp School Tatura 4, section C

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

1 cream coloured foolscap page of a timetable used in the camp school at Tatura, for the period beginning October 22. Type written.

Historical information

Timetable drawn up by the lecturers who were conducting a school at Tatura 4, section c. Lists the lecturers, what they were lecturing on and times of the day, Sunday to Friday, that the lecturers took place.

Folder - biography - Andrew Crawford 1887-1974

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Black covered multi ring folder containing 32 plastic sleeves with typed information.

Historical information

The story of Andrew Crawford covering his time in the army life before the war, his role in the war, the 8th Light Horse regiment, covering many of the battles he was engaged in, his promotions through the ranks, and life after the war. Includes many graphic photographs and maps. In the back is a copy of a letter he send his mother in September 1918.

Warship - Japanese warship

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Handmade wooden model on a stand. Japanese inscription in front of warship as well as "Tatura Australia" below Japanese inscription both standing on this stand beside the warship.

Historical information

Given to Corporal Taylor, a guard at camp 4 in appreciation of his treatment

Inscriptions & Markings

As in the physical description, with inscriptions on stand.

Model - Broom Pearling Lugger - Tatura No 6

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Wooden hull painted white with bottle green trim. Brown coloured sails (2 large, 3 jib). Fine thread connecting sails and the wooden rungs of the ladder. The words "Tatura No. 6" painted on both sides of the bow and on the stern. Painted in black paint. A black triangular flag on top of mast. Sitting on a wooden stand.

Historical information

Given as a gift to Corporal Taylor, a former guard in Camp 4 in appreciation of his treatment.

Inscriptions & Markings

Tatura No. 6

Badge - Peronne 1918 - 2018

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Circle - pin on badge. White with red white blue writing

Historical information

Centenery of Battle of Peronne, given to Tony when he attended the service. Tony is a great nephew of Robert Mactier VC

Inscriptions & Markings

100 1st et Septembre 2018 Peronne 1918 - 2018

2 x Ice cream tins

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

2 tins of Streets Vanilla ice cream, half gallon tins, made of metal

Inscriptions & Markings

Decorative markings of winter snow on sides and bowls of icecream on front of each tin. Made by Streets,Australia

Metal kitchen safe

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Australian perforated and painted metal kitchen meat safe. Painted green on top with cream sides. One shelf inside.

Book - In God We Trust English edition

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Brown, soft covered book with photo of man and woman on front. English edition.

Historical information

Letters written, 1942-1944 by Ewald Steiniger, while interned, to and from his wife Annemarie Steiniger. Ewald was a Lutheran Pastor in East Melbourne when he was arrested and spent time in Loveday Camp South Australia and Camp 1, Tatura.

Significance

Letters, written in German, relate Ewald's experiences while interned.

Inscriptions & Markings

"For Tatura Museum with good wishes Anne Steiniger;Dieter Steiniger (children of Ewald Steiniger) Oct. 2015". ISBN 978-00646-94026-7

Booklet - Mass of Thanksgiving Centenary of the Arrival of the Sisters of Mercy and Catholic Education in Tatura 1900 - 2000

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Light yellow booklet with photo of Tatura convent on cover. 14 pages with b/w sketches throughout.

Significance

Mass of Thanksgiving

Jew's harp

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Small metal harp

Historical information

Made by a camp 13 POW and given to Private Alan Cunningham, V17394, a guard at camp 13

Duty pass - Royal Visit 1954

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Mid blue card with black print on front. Reverse has been hand - written with bearers details. Stamped and signed by official.

Historical information

Pass needed to enter Tatura Railway station, Royal Visit 1954

Inscriptions & Markings

Royal Visit 1954. Mr Kevin Patrick Harford , Junior Postal Officer is entitled to enter Tatura Railway station on 5th March 1954.

Certificate of Appreciation

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

A decorative certificate of Appreciation presented to W.M Culkin. Signed and sealed by President N.Doonan, Councillor R Ponting, and W T Martin, Secretary of the Shire of Rodney.

Historical information

Presented to W.M Culkin in appreciation of his service in the Armed Forces in W.W.2

Photos

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

photos of Junior Deb set C1958 - one photo of girls and the second of boys.

Historical information

Girls: Anne - Maree Mactier, Josephine O'Toole, Jane McKenzie, Margaret Lally, Barbara Dowell, Judith Mitchell, Bev Rollinson, Suzanne Cummins, Meridith Cheatley. Front: Pauline O'Toole, John Deane, Angela Ioranni, Carol Rollinson. Boys: I. Richardson, Kevin Lally, R.Cheatley, D Van Every, Peter Francis, Gerald Mulcahy, Peter Harnetty, Ian Thomas, Michael Wilson, Ross Stammers, Peter Steen, Terry Fletcher.

Inscriptions & Markings

Junior Deb set. Girls were on stage standing in boxes (meant to be dolls). Boys came along, bowed, and the dolls came alive.

DVD and document - Reinhold Eckfield

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

A DVD of Reinhold Eckfeld's talk to the Scout group - "Vienna to England" and "Dunera to Melbourne". Also a 8 page document of his life, life in Austria as a young boy, getting to England at out break of war and his internment.

Historical information

This is an original copy of Reinhold Eckfeld's talk to the Scouts, a record of his experiences. A 8 page document is with it.

Inscriptions & Markings

Reinhold Eckfeld May 19 2015 Vienna to England Dunera to Melbourne

DVD - Reinhold Eckfeld's record of his W.W.2 experiences as a Jewish refugee.in England and Australia. "From Venice to Australia" and "Dunera to Australia".

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

D.V.D - R

Historical information

Reinhold Eckfeld's record of experiences as a Jewish refugee in England to Australia.

Inscriptions & Markings

Reinhold Eckfeld. May 19, 2015."Vienna to England" and "Dunera to Melbourne

crocheted purse

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Crocheted purse (handbag) with thin handle attached across the top. Originally blue in colour but faded to grey in front. Navy blue toggle as a clasp.

Historical information

Made by Josef "Walter" Thiele, a Dunera boy. Made as a gift for his wife in the U.K.

Diary extracts - Antonio Dallanegra

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

4 colour photographs of pages from the diary of Antonio Dallanegra.

Historical information

Antonio Dallanegra was an Welsh Italian interned in Camp 2, in 1940. The pages tell the story of the sinking of the Arandora Star and their trip back to Scotland and then onto Australia.

Paperback Book - Chronik der Kriegsgefangennen Deutschen Offiziere in Australien Vom 23/8/1941 - 21/11/1947

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

cardboard cover, mustard colour, 20 plus A4 pages. Ink sketches throughout book. This copy is written in German

Historical information

This copy was written by Lieut Hans Folter, who was captured Jan 22nd, 1941 at Solum near Tobruk North Africa with Major Helmut Bertram. They were co authors, who were subsequently sent to Australia on the "Queen Elizabeth" and held prisoners of war at Dhurringile P.O.W Camp for German Officers, 1941 - 1947. This book describes life in P.O.W camp - recollections and sketches.

Significance

Descriptions, recollections and sketches of life in P.O.W camp - Dhurringile. Donated by the daughter of Hans Folter

Sketch - Lieutenant James Sullivan

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

2 copies of sketch of Lieutenant James Sullivan by Liang Hou Y in 1944.

Historical information

Sketch done by internee Liang Hou Y of Lieutenant James Sullivan camp 4 army garrison.

Photograph - Francis SPROAT

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Black and white photograph (copy) of Francis Sproat on a A4 sheet of paper in plastic sleeve.

Historical information

Black and white photograph (copy) of Francis Sproat who was a warden at number 4 internment camp.

Folio - Corporal John M McGlade

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

1 A4 sheet of typed paper in plastic sleeve with a sepia photograph of John.

Historical information

The story of Corporal John Matthew McGlade through WW1 and WW2. Also donated one Disney Pig playing flute(C7990) and a ship in a bottle (C7989). These were made by an Italian POW for Corporal McGlade.

Puppet - Princess puppet

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Paper mache head & arms hand painted pink. Small paper crown on top of white painted hair. White fabric dress with metallic gold trim in front on sleeves. A high collar attached to dress made of white fabric covering leather for stiffness. Blue cotton coat with gold trim. Wooden legs covered in calico with blue painted high heel shoes, with white heels.

Historical information

The puppets were made by German POW's in camp 13 and sent to internment camp 3 as gifts for the children at Christmas time.

Puppet - Man with moustache

Tatura Irrigation & Wartime Camps Museum, Tatura

Cotton head of man with large nose, pointed chin and moustache. Hand painted blue eyes. Moustache and eye brows made with cotton thread. Magenta tie stitched to neck. Bottle green felt jacket with magenta trim. Leather hands attached to sleeves. Light brown skirt attached to jacket. leather ears on head.

Historical information

The puppets were made by German POW's in camp 13 and sent to internment camp 3 as gifts for the children at Christmas time.