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Tennis Australia Melbourne, Victoria

Tennis Australia is the governing body for the sport of tennis in Australia. The organisation exists to promote tennis and conduct domestic and international tournaments on behalf of Australia, including the Australian Open and the Davis Cup for the Australian Davis Cup Team. Tennis has been played in Australia from around 1877, but it was not until 1904, in preparation for the Davis Cup, that the sport began to organise, with the founding of Tennis Australia's predecessor, the Australasian Lawn Tennis Association. In 2005 TA celebrated its centenary, and that of its first event – the Australian Open. The organisation is currently based in at Melbourne Park.

There are around 6,000 catalogued items in the Tennis Australia heritage collections, and an estimated 2,000 uncatalogued items. The collections include a large amount of tennis equipment dating from the late 19th Century to today including around 4,000 tennis racquets, plus hundreds of balls, racquet-presses, nets, clothing and other equipment which represent the immense changes in technology and materials over a century. They can also tell interesting stories of major manufacturers and champion athletes that made, used and endorsed tennis equipment. Some items are extremely rare, such as handmade wood inlay racquets from the 1860s to be used in the sport that was precursor to modern tennis, known as 'real tennis'. Another fine piece is a large leather and wood banner, c.1900 which was an early advertisement for important tennis equipment manufactures Wright & Ditson.

The collection also includes thousands of photographs and newspaper articles relating to the sport of tennis in Australia and Australian players playing overseas. And it includes rare and important original tickets, programmes and memorabilia from very early Davis Cup and Australian Open matches (1900 to 1960). A fine example of original photographs is the album of pictures created by Eleanor Hopman in 1938 to document herself and other Australian women players travelling to play in England, accompanied on part of the journey by the Australian Cricket team, including Don Bradman. The collection also includes a few thousand journals, magazines, reference books and rare books, dating as far back as the 1870s all relating to tennis.

Also in the collection are hundreds of items which depict or celebrate the sport of tennis, including fine antique jewelry, fine art, decorative art and popular prints and cartoons. Stand-out pieces include a 18th Century oil painting of an English aristocrat and a circa-1870s stained glass panel depicting early tennis, part of a pair, with the other half housed in the Wimbledon Museum collection, UK. Also interesting is a sub-collection of tennis-themed games, from well-preserved 19th Century parlour games to a 1970s pinball machine.

Contact Information

location
Melbourne Park Olympic Boulevard, Melbourne Park Melbourne 3000

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Location

Melbourne Park Olympic Boulevard Melbourne Park Melbourne Victoria

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Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Dunlop 'Match Point' tennis racquet with no net. Materials: Wood, String, Adhesive tape, Leather, Paint

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden racquet with a convex throat, and a grooved, octagonal handle. Throat on obverse features decal inscription: AZTEC. Throat on reverse features a decal of a crowned garter with the inscription: E. KENT. Company logo also impressed in gold upon brown butt cover. Materials: Wood, Glue, Lacquer, Metal, Gut, Ink, String, Leather

Press kit

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Press/Media kit: 1994 U.S. Open Tennis Championships Materials: Paper, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Dunlop 'Maxply Tournament Model' racquet. Materials: Wood, Paint, String, Adhesive tape, Gut, Leather

Book

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Book: 'Tennis'. 128 pages. Paperback. 1975 edition (first published 1965). Materials: Paper, Ink, Cardboard

Book

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Official 1989 MTC Media Guide Materials: Paper, Ink, Cardboard

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden, oval racquet with a concave throat, cloth tape supports, and fish-tail handle. Inscription across crown on obverse: THE DEMON. Model trademark is stamped on throat on obverse, featuring a horned demon's head device, with the text: THE/DEMON. Manufacturer's decal trademark across throat on reverse, comprises of a hexagram with the text: BEST IS BEST/S&S/L/THRO' THE WORLD. Retailer's decal below: LISLE FRASER/WHOLESALE/AND/RETAIL/SPORTING GOODS/... Inscription stamped along left side of stem and handle: SLAZENGERS (CANADA) LIMITED...MADE IN CANADA. Materials: Wood, Gut, Metal, Glue, Lacquer, Cloth tape, String, Paint

Guide

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Player Guide: 1993 Ford Australian Open Materials: Paper, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Wilson 'Sledgehammer 4.8' demo racquet. Plastic seal on handle. Materials: Graphite, Plastic, Nylon, Adhesive tape, Rubber

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

This object has 33 parts (2008.960.1 - 2008.960.33). The parts are 33 identical racquets. Each part is a Slazenger 'Professional' wood racquet with no net. Materials: Wood, Plastic, Adhesive tape, Leather, Ribbon

Magazine

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

18 issues of 'World Tennis' magazine, dating from 1978. Materials: Ink, Paper, Metal

Book

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Book: "The Margaret Smith Story" by Margaret Smith. Hardcover. Materials: Cardboard, Paper, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

An open throat, wooden racquet. Inscription, across base of head of obverse: BLUE PHANTOM. Inscription across base of head on reverse: NARRAGANSETT MACHINE CO./.../"LIVE-WOOD"/.../PAWTUCKET, R.I. Company logo 'NMCO STANDARD' is stamped into a blue cloth and leather butt cap. Materials: Wood, Glue, Lacquer, Ink, Leather, String, Gut, Cloth

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Wright & Ditson 'The Park' model tennis racquet with solid convex throat. Rounded flat top head. Manufacturer name and place of manufacture printed across throat on obverse. Model name printed on crown on obverse. manufacturer trademark across throat on reverse. On side of shaft is printed: PATENTED,/JAN. 3, 05,. Fine grooved octagonal handle with leather end wrap. On leather butt cap is inscribed: B/E/200. Materials: Wood, Metal, Lacquer, Glue, Ink, Leather, Gut

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden racquet with concave throat, blue painted stem, plastic whipping, and faux-cork cloth tape handle grip. Decal across base of head and throat, on both sides, features the inscription: JC HIGGINS/OUR OWN TRADE MARK/CADET. Below inscription is the head and shoulders profile image of a military cadet in uniform. Materials: Wood, Nylon, Glue, Lacquer, Metal, Ink, Adhesive tape, Paint, Leather, Plastic, Cloth tape

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Wilson 'Hammer 5.5 Stretch' racquet. Materials: Graphite, Plastic, Nylon, Adhesive tape, Rubber

Tournament Programme

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Tournament Programme: Davis Cup Tie 1939; Australia vs Philippines Materials: Paper, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden, slotted handle racquet. Inscription across base of head and throat of obverse: GOOD SHOT!/LEE. Inscription along stem of obverse: KAREL B. KOZELUH/M.P. Inscription across the throat of reverse: HARRY C. LEE & CO./NEW YORK. Half of head and stem is painted white. Black leather handle and butt cap. Materials: Wood, Glue, Lacquer, Ink, String, Gut, Leather, Metal, Adhesive tape

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Spalding 'Pancho Segura Autograph Model' wood tennis racquet. Ribbon reinforcements around shoulders and shaft. Model name & endorser signature printed across throat. Manufacturer's name printed across base of head. Grip wrapped with perforated leather. White butt cloth. Wreathed 'S" logo embroidered on butt cloth and printed on shaft. Red plastic reinforcement around shaft. Materials: Wood, Metal, Lacquer, Glue, Ink, Nylon, Paint, Leather, Ribbon, Cloth, Thread

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Chemold Roy Emerson tennis racquet, with ribbon whipping around shoulders and shaft, and mottled rubber handle grip. Chemold logo features across base of head. A decal image of the United States coat-of-arms features on the throat. Decal of Emerson signature features across the centre of the shaft. Plain, white plastic butt cap. Materials: Wood, Nylon, Ink, Plastic, Rubber, Glue, Lacquer, Metal, Ribbon, Paint, Adhesive tape

Tournament Programme

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Programme of the 76th National Intercollegiate Tennis Championships Materials: Paper, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden racquet with a convex throat. Throat of obverse features the Horsman 'centaur' trademark in black and gold. Trademark also features on reverse, but with no gold fill. Manufacturing details feature across side of stem. Materials: Wood, Gut, Metal, Lacquer, Leather

Tournament Programme

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Programme: INFINITI CHAMPIONS INAUGURAL EVENT, Sherwood Country Club, 1993. Materials: Paper, Ink

Keyring

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Souvenir keyring for Davis Cup Final December1990, Australia vs. USA. Materials: Ink, Metal

Periodical

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Compaq Grand Slam Cup (Munich) Daily News 16/12/1990. Contents in German. 4 pages. Materials: Paper, Ink

Magazine

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Two issues of 'Tennis U.S.A.', dating from 1976. Materials: Ink, Paper, Metal

Tournament Programme

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Two programmes for Match days during Wimbledon 1962. Materials: Ink, Paper, Metal

Organisational document

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Booklet: 'ITF The Constitution of the ITF Limited 2000' Materials: Paper, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Spalding 'Nassau No.6' model tennis racquet, featuring concave throat & fine-grooved octagonal wooden handle. Has a leather end wrap and leather butt cloth. String whipping around shoulders. Throat area painted black. Manufacturer and model name printed on throat on obverse, and manufacturer logo printed on throat on reverse. Logo also printed on butt cloth. Materials: Wood, Metal, Lacquer, Glue, Gut, Ink, String, Leather, Paint

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden tennis racquet with concave throat, string whipping around shoulders, and a fine grooved handle. Inscription across throat on obverse: SHAWANO. Green and white decal of Rawlings "Manufacturers of High Grade Athletic Goods" trademark features across throat on reverse. Hand carved initials on left side of handle: J.E.S. Hand carved name on right side: JOE [E] STEMBRIDGE. Materials: Wood, Twine, String, Ink, Glue, Lacquer, Metal

Card game

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Partial deck of 41 playing cards. Back of all card features a blue geometric pattern with racquets & balls motif at centre. Materials: Cardboard, Ink

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Rawlings, Bicentennial Model tennis racquet, with string whipping on shoulders, and leather handle grip with X-formation perforations. Rawlings logo features across crown, and across base of head, flanked by red and white stripes. Model name features across throat. A row of white stars on a blue background features along the shaft. The United States flag, with the dates '1776' and '1976' situated above and below it, respectively, features on the lower shaft. Cursive 'R' trademark features in sunken butt cap. Materials: Wood, Nylon, Ink, Glue, Lacquer, Metal, Plastic, Leather, String, Enamel, Adhesive tape

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Spalding Top-Flite model tennis racquet, featuring whipping around shoulders and shaft, an open throat, fine-grooved handle and leather end wrap & butt cloth. Model name features across base of head, on obverse. Manufacturer name features across base of head on reverse. Butt cloth is printed with manufacturer logo. Materials: Wood, Metal, Lacquer, Glue, Leather, Vinyl, Ink, String

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A stemless wooden racquet, featuring an open, three-pronged throat connecting the head directly to the handle. Head, and outer prongs are reinforced by fibreglass bands, decorated with white plastic strips. Inscription across the base of the head, on obverse: WHITE. Manufacturer's trademark decal 'HAZELLS' features at central prong on obverse. Decal inscription on the outside of right prong features worldwide patents. Inscription on inside of right prong: MADE IN ENGLAND BY/HAZELLS LTD. LONDON. Decal inscription on outside of left prong: HAZELL'S STREAMLINE/REGD. & PATENTED. Materials: Wood, Gut, Leather, Metal, Ink, Glue, Lacquer, Plastic, Fibreglass, String, Adhesive tape

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden, open throat, slotted handle racquet, with a 13 1/2 inch head. Inscription along base of head of obverse: LAKEWOOD. Inscription across base of head of reverse: HARRY C. LEE & CO/NEW YORK. Inscriptions featuring manufacturing and patent details situated along the sides of the stem. Materials: Wood, Glue, Lacquer, Ink, String, Gut, Leather, Paint, Metal, Cloth

Photographic print

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Colour photograph of Rod Laver, John Newcombe and Neale Fraser. Materials: Ink, Paper

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Wooden, slotted handle racquet. Inscription across neck of obverse: HARRY C. LEE & CO/NEW YORK. Company logo 'LEE' on neck of reverse, and stamped on leather butt cap. Manufacturing and patent information along the sides of the handle, with various, indecipherable numbers punched in. Materials: Wood, Gut, Leather, Metal, Ink, Glue, Lacquer

Tournament Programme

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Tournament Programme: Davis Cup 1993; USA vs Australia. Materials: Paper, Ink

Racquet clip for bicycle

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Box for a 'Terry's Tennis Racket Clip' used for attaching a racquet to a bicycle. Clip not in box (now attached to object 2009.74). Box stuffed with shredded green cellophane. Materials: Cardboard, Cellophane, Ink

Tournament Programme

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

French Open Quotidien Officiale: 04/06/1991 Materials: Paper, Ink

Prize cup

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Silver prize cup inscribed: 'LAWN TENNIS HANDICAP/TOURNAMENT/1ST PRIZE/WON BY/LIONEL PERRY/1888'. On base 'MAPPIN AND WEBB'S/PRINCE'S PLATE/RD 71553/W5349' Materials: Silver/Metal

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Diamond Manufacturing Co tennis racquet with convex solid throat, and an octagonal handle. Has a leather end wrap. Decal with manufacturer name and other text printed across throat on obverse: TRADE/QUALITY/DIAMOND MANUFACTURING CO/DIAMOND BRAND/COUNTS/MARK. Decal also features winged dragons on either side facing in. Materials: Wood, Lacquer, Metal, Glue, Gut, Leather, String, Cloth, Ink

Prize dish

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Silver prize dish. Inscr: 'PACIFIC SOUTHWEST/TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS/LOS ANGELES 1930/MIXED DOUBLES/WON BY/E. VINES & H. MARLOWE'. Materials: Silver/Metal

Ashtray

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Metal ashtray with figurine of child holding a racquet. Materials: Metal

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Stuart Surridge Iris-brand, 'Argyle' tennis racquet, with: concave throat; whipping over cloth tape reinforced shoulders; deep eyelet channel around outer crown; flat throat; and fine-grooved octagonal handle. Model and manufacturer's details across throat on obverse; retailer's trademark across throat on reverse. Materials: Wood, Lacquer, Metal, Glue, Gut, Ink, Cloth tape

Letter stand

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Brass and silver letter stand with racquet motif. Sticker on base states: MADE IN TAIWAN. Materials: Brass/Metal composite, Silver/Metal

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A Lowe & Campbell 'Hummer' tennis racquet, with concave throat, and fine-grooved octagonal handle. Model name across throat on obverse; manufacturer's trademark on throat on reverse. Materials: Wood, Lacquer, Glue, Metal, Gut, Ink, String, Leather, Cloth

Photographic print

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

Photo of John McEnroe Materials: Paper, Photographic emulsion

Magazine

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

16 issues of 'World Tennis' magazine, dating from 1966. Materials: Ink, Paper, Metal

Racquet

Tennis Australia, Melbourne

A wooden tennis racquet with parchment supports, black and white string whipping, and a fine grooved handle. Partially legible inscription along throat on obverse: NEW/W[INNER]. Inscription across throat, on reverse: F.J. BANCROFT/PAWTUCKET/R.I./... Accomapnying decal trademark comprises of an eagle grasping a tennis racquet, in front of the Globe, with motto: USED/THE WORLD OVER. Materials: Wood, Gut, Leather, Glue, Lacquer, Metal, Ink, String, Cloth, Parchment