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Vision Australia

Vision Australia is a leading national provider of blindness and low vision services in Australia. We work in partnership with Australians who are blind or have low vision to help them achieve the possibilities they choose in life. Vision Australia is a not-for-profit organisation with client numbers of 50,000 and we are also a major participant and partner in the international blindness community. We provide services and support for clients through 28 Vision Australia centres in NSW, ACT, Queensland and Victoria. Clinics are also held in 29 other locations and there are outreach services to the Northern Territory and Tasmania.

Contact Information

location
454 Glenferrie Road Kooyong Victoria 3144
phone
+61 1300 847466

Contact

Opening Hours

By appointment only.

Location

The Vision Australia Heritage collection consists of materials created, produced by or awarded to Vision Australia or its historical organisations that document that history of blindness organisations from the 1860's and their impact upon individuals. It has over 10,000 items including photographs, annual reports, tactile art, building plans and programs.

Significance

This unique collection contains materials that provide a significant interpretation of changing social attitudes, items created or used by blind or vision impaired individuals, as well as rare pieces that are the only known examples of this type within Australia.

David Glauser 1 August 2017 10:53 AM

https://victoriancollections.net.au/?q=glauser&view=58d0907cd0d0103314f35dd3 Dear Sirs, We would be most grateful if due credit for this typewriter was also given in this description to my father, Jean Maurice Glauser who in collaboration with Edward Pyke developed this writer. My father's company J M Glauser and Sons Scientific Instruments Ltd worked closely with the Royal Institute for the Blind for many years on this and other aids for the blind and designed this and other equipment. It would be a great shame if my father's contribution to facilitate the quality of life for the blind was not adequately mentioned? The typewriter was acknowledge as a major advance and is even mentioned in the Courier Mail of October 24th 1935 as the first typewriter imported into Queensland for a young blind student named Miss Mercy Griffin who was studying for University and was an accomplished musician. We have further details should you wish of this and other Braille equipment my father designed and manufactured. Your kind consideration of my family's request will be much appreciated. Yours sincerely, David Glauser Perth Western Australia

Vision Australia 8 August 2017 1:50 PM

Thanks David. We have updated records on both the JMG Stenotype and Pyke-Glauser Braille writer to reflect their wonderful heritage. We would love further details on these items. Can you please send us a message at heritage@visionaustralia.org .

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1101 items

Text

Vision Australia,

1 certificate of appreciation

Historical information

Certificate reads "Certificate of Appreciation: May it be known that this certificate has been presented to members of the Association for the Blind Arthur Wilkins Day Centre, Essendon by Lions Club of Strathmore-Gladstone Park in appreciation of the invaluable services and cooperation extended." Signed by the President (illegible) and Secretary (illegible) on 30th November 1993.

Text - RVIB Flemington East Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Letters -- 1 bank book-- and various loose papers

Historical information

This small collection of the Flemington East Auxiliary contains correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1980 - 1988.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of unknown Carols by Candlelight performer

Historical information

Portrait shot of unknown performer, most likely for Carols by Candlelight program.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of Lindsay Thompson

Historical information

Portrait photograph of Lindsay Thompson, acting Premier of Victoria, who appeared at the 1981 performance of Carols by Candlelight.

Text - RVIB Murtoa Auxiliary papers

Vision Australia,

Letters -- bank books -- various loose papers

Historical information

The Murtoa RVIB Auxiliary was formed on May 8, 1932. This small collection contains correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1990 -2008 and also includes a brief history of the Auxiliary.

Text - RVIB Meredith Auxiliary papers

Vision Australia,

Letters -- various loose papers

Historical information

This small collection of the Meredith Auxiliary contains correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1980 - 1989.

Object - Talking disc for the deaf-blind

Vision Australia,

White plastic disc with black indicator arm

Historical information

A plastic device to enable a sighted person to communicate with a person who is Deaf-Blind in either standard Braille or Moon. The centre radius of the disc has the ordinary alphabet printed in black. Moving outwards from the centre, are the corresponding letters embossed in Braille, then on the outer edge are the corresponding letters in Moon. The user moved the indicator arm around the disc until the desired letter and corresponding symbol was positioned under the cut-out in the centre of the arm. The deaf-blind person could then touch the disc to determine the letters being communicated. Numbers and punctuation are not included.

Object - Louis Braille bust

Vision Australia,

Sculpture of man on wooden plinth

Historical information

A bust of Louis Braille was gifted to the Victorian Association of Braille Writers in 1929 by the sculptor Guilliame Daniel Duprat. The bronze bust sits upon a blackwood plinth, with an inscribed nameplate below the chest, and a revolving medallion at the base of the stand.

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x B/W photograph

Historical information

Side view of brick building, possibly a workshop for the Queensland Institute for the Blind. A 1920's car stands to the rear of the building, possibly loading or unloading people or items.

Object - Stainsby Braille writer

Vision Australia,

Silver Brailler, rectangular with six silver keys and a bell, with paper board and clip, in cardboard suitcase

Historical information

The Stainsby Braillewriter was utilised by Braille tutors and volunteers as well the blind and visually impaired. Stored in a brown cardboard lockable case and this complete kit consists of a metal Braille writing machine; a long slim rectangular device with carriage and six silver keys and a bell, a metal board to attach Braille writer, a metal hinged Braille paper clamp and an instructional booklet. Henry Stainsby (1859-1925), Supt. of the Birmingham Royal Institution for the Blind, (later General Secretary of the British & Foreign Blind Association) along with Birmingham manufacturer Albert Wayne, introduced their portable brailler writer around 1903. An "improved" version, featuring aluminum parts and a paper clamp allowing accurate interpointing or interlining, was announced in "Outlook for the Blind" as early as 1927 and available generally by 1933 in the RNIB catalog. By 1978, RNIB sold the Improved Stainsby in a number of formats, including a large version available with interlining and inter-pointing board, and a small version with a folding board. Both large and small models came in ordinary and reverse keyed versions.

Inscriptions & Markings

M8839 M88 (Brailler) M 8839 (Board) On the outside of the suitcase an address label reads "Braille Library, 31-51 Commercial Road, South Yarra".

Object - Small hand frame with stylus

Vision Australia,

1 wooden board with paper and braille frame

Historical information

This wooden board has hinged flap to allow paper to be inserted, and two tacks under on the lower part secure the paper. The top flap is then closed and a metal clasp holds it firmly in place. A row of holes either side of the board, allow for a hand frame to be attached, to guide the writer in maintaining straightness when transcribing.

Inscriptions & Markings

'Armitage memorial' pressed into frame

Object - Variety on parade! ticket

Vision Australia,

1 rectangular shaped concert ticket with black ink text

Historical information

Funds were raised for RVIB in the during the 1940's and 1950s by putting on concerts called 'Variety on Parade'. The ticket reads 'As a Thanksgiving for sight! Proceeds in aid of the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind Babies, Children & Adults, St Kilda Road, Prahran, Melbourne'. It was held at the Public Hall, Buckrabanyule on Tuesday 2nd Sept. 1952 at 8pm. Admission was 3/6 and it was advised that 'New! Non-stop Variety Entertainment of Music, Mirth and Sensational Acts' would be experienced.

Inscriptions & Markings

Ticket no. 56 Ticket no. 57

Text - RVIB Mitcham Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Letters -- newspaper clippings -- various loose papers

Historical information

This small collection from The Mitcham RVIB Auxiliary contains correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1980 -1987.

Image

Vision Australia,

5 x B/W photographs

Historical information

Local newspaper photographs taken at the Association for the Blind's Kelaston home in Ballarat. 044 - View of the Kelaston sign and grounds in Howitt Street. 045 - Mr Roy King presented with a plaque in honour of his service. 046 - L to R: Lynne Klien, two residents, Mona Dynon, Laurie Hay (day centre coordinator) upon the occasion of Laurie's retirement. 052 - L to R: Ruby Blake, Don Dunstan (manager of Kelaston) and another nursing home resident. 054 - L to R: unknown, Dianne Kerr, Bob de Little and a visitor look on in the craft room.

Text

Vision Australia,

2 x A4 col. pages of advertising material

Historical information

In 1974, the Royal Blind Society established within it's manufacturing division a facility to build high quality tandems for blind and partially sighted members of its sports club. By the end of 1978, the manufacturing division expanded and a new series of high quality, hand built racing cycles were developed to suit the individuals needs of the cycling enthusiast. A demand in the bicycle hire industry prompted the development of a strong universal bicycle and the new 24" Mixti family cycle was born. By 1979 the Royal Blind Society was manufacturing both family bicycles and tandems for the bicycle hire industry in N.S.W., Victoria and the A.C.T. Both cycles received an enthusiastic reception, so much so, that in 1982 they were the first bicycle manufacturer to win an Australian Design Award. In these two advertising leaflets, the specifications for the Ladies, Family and Gents bicycles are supplied along with images of each bicycle.

Image

Vision Australia,

Col. photographs of transparencies taken at Carols by Candlelight

Historical information

Various crowd pictures enjoying the 1980 Carols by Candlelight performance

Object - Book magnifier

Vision Australia,

1 wooden box with fold out top and inset glass magnifier.

Historical information

This black wooden antique hinged book magnifier was typical of the elegant way that Victorian age designers combined both practicality and style into the salon. Folded down, this box would sit on a side table until required, whereupon it would expand to allow the user to read items in their hand. A platform designed to hold reading materials would be elevated into position, and the magnifier allowed for three different levels of height. On top of the magnifier are engraved decorations - one of a bow and the other of a globe, telescope and scroll.

Object - Carols by Candlelight matches

Vision Australia,

1 box of white headed matches

Historical information

Rectangular box of matches sold at Carols by Candlelight. White box with 'Carols by Candlelight 1990' in blue lettering, with a Hungry Jacks logo in the centre. On the reverse side, also in blue lettering, 'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind Carols by Candlelight 1990'.

Inscriptions & Markings

Carols by Candelight 1990 Hungry Jacks logo

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of the Australian Childrens Choir.

Historical information

The Australian Childrens Choir rehearses, possibly in Ormond Hall, ahead of their Carols by Candlelight performance.

Inscriptions & Markings

85/240 26

Image

Vision Australia,

Text

Vision Australia,

Text - Laura Clarke Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

4 minute books --- 2 statement of accounts books --- 3 treasurers books --- 2 members lists (1998, 1999) --- notes for the Turkey and Champagne luncheon --- 1 stamp --- 4 receipt books --- 2 Champagne and Turkey Luncheon tickets

Historical information

The Laura Clarke Auxiliary formed at the Mirridong Home in 1968 and was wound up on November 22, 2001. This collection of papers includes the minute books from 1972 to 2001 and a list of members was maintained at the front of the minute books as well as two individual lists have been retained.

Text - RVIB Admissions and Discharges register

Vision Australia,

1 v.

Historical information

Client registers were used to record information about those who became RVIB clients. Upon admission, basic information would be recorded for future reference under the following headings: date of admission, name in full, year of birth, religion, birthplace, cause of blindness, terms of admission, name and address of guardian. When a client left the service, the Discharges side of the page was updated with the following information: date of discharge, name in full and remarks. Discharge information is recorded in chronological order. This book provides a record of all RVIB admissions and discharges for the period 1/7/1967 to 1/12/1982. Name searches are not available for this item.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of John and Janet Wicking speaking to Eunice and John Wilson.

Historical information

President John Wicking with his wife Janet is speaking to CEO John Wilson and his wife Eunice.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W copy of negatives

Historical information

Presentation at RVIB to unknown man with three other men either shaking hands or presenting the award. From the camera and camera bag held by the awardee, most likely a photographer who has done work for RVIB.

Inscriptions & Markings

E:602

Image

Vision Australia,

7 B/W images of workers making brushes

Historical information

RVIB brushware was a source of income and some items were packaged under the name 'Blindcraft' to indicate their origin. In this collection the journey of the millet through it's storage, selection, binding and attachment to other sections.

Text

Vision Australia,

Paper register

Historical information

Vision Australia Foundation,Tilly Aston Customer Council minutes 12/9/2002 -27/6/2005

Text - RVIB Kiata Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Letters -- newspaper clippings -- various loose papers

Historical information

The Kiata RVIB Auxiliary was formed on September, 1949. This small collection contains index cards which were maintained by RVIB and contain the amount of donations made by the Auxiliary between 1976 - 1995 as well as the presentations delivered by RVIB employees to Auxiliary meetings between 1978 - 1984. Correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1990 - 2000.

Object - Mowat sensor

Vision Australia,

1 pale green coloured plastic rectangle sensor with a brown nylon, plaited wrist strap

Historical information

The Mowat Sensor model MS 01, is a pale green, palm-sized, plastic battery operated device with a darker green switch on top. It is partially open at one end with two grilles. A microphone plugs into the other end with a wrist strap. It came with a brown vinyl carry case and owner's manual, which are not included. This Hand held device for the visually impaired uses high frequency sound to detect objects within a narrow beam. The sensor vibrates if an object is present, responds to closest object within the beam. The vibration rate increases as user approaches object. There are two range settings: short, responds to objects less than 1 meter away (indoor use) and long, responds to objects of sufficient size up to 4 meters. The sensor can be hand held or carried in pocket or purse. As a facility intended for partially sighted people, the compass also includes an in-built color indicator (visible through the semi-transparent enclosure), which indicates the direction using a combination of three colours. Weight: 185 grams.

Inscriptions & Markings

Model MS01

Text - RVIB Woomelang Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Index cards --various loose papers and letters

Historical information

The Woomelang RVIB Auxiliary formed on May 6, 1957. This small collection contains index cards which were maintained by RVIB and contain the amount of donations made by the Auxiliary between 1976-1995, as well as the presentations delivered by RVIB employees to Auxiliary meetings between 1978-1985. Correspondence to and from RVIB head office 1990 - 2004.

Object - Aviator playing cards with large print

Vision Australia,

Playing cards with with red and white design with numbers and suit in large print in paper packet.

Historical information

A 52 playing card set (plus two jokers) with large print numbers and suit types. A fact card is included about the death of Wild Bill Hickok during a game of poker. The Aviator brand of cards was released just after the first trans-Atlantic flight in commemoration of the crossing.

Text - RVIB Yarra Glen Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Newspaper articles -- letters -- index cards and various loose papers

Historical information

The Yarra Glen RVIB Auxiliary formed on March 19, 1956. This small collection contains index cards which were maintained by RVIB and contain the amount of donations made by the Auxiliary between 1976 - 1995 as well as the presentations delivered by RVIB employees to Auxiliary meetings between 1978 - 1985. Correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1990 - 1999.

Object - Jumbo watch

Vision Australia,

1 jumbo black and white watch

Historical information

This ARSA low vision jumbo quartz unisex watch is black mat aluminium with black face of 34 mm and 12 white figures and black leather strap. Auguste Reymond has now been the leading Swiss manufacturer for forty years in the field of Braille and low vision watches, distributing ARSA timepieces all over the world, in cooperation with all major associations dedicated to the support of the visually impaired. All timepieces are genuine Swiss made watches, assembly by hand in their premises.

Object - Liquid level sensor: 2 level

Vision Australia,

1 black liquid sensor with 2 magnets

Historical information

This two level Liquid Level Sensor is an aid which prevents cups from being overfilled with 2 levels of liquid. The unit simply hangs over the side of a cup or glass with the probes on the inside. Ideal for making a cup of tea or coffee with milk. Simply pour in the hot water stopping when a pulsating tone is heard then pour in milk stopping when a continuous tone is heard. Can also be used as a single level sensor such as for non mixed drinks. Handy magnets on the back of the unit allow for easy storage on fridge or other metal object. Uses a 12V battery.

Text - The Association for the Blind, Blind Members' Council meeting minutes 20/6/1975 to 17/7/1981

Vision Australia,

1 book

Historical information

These meetings were held at the Kooyong office and the minutes include Present, Chair, Apologies, Minutes, Matter arising from minutes, Correspondence, Life governors, Election of nominees, Nominations, Reports from Finance, Welfare, Brighton, Ballarat, Kooyong, Regional Centres, Nursing homes, Blind Members' auxiliary, Social activities, General business, Guest speakers. The AFB Blind Members' Council Annual Reports are also included beginning with June 30th 1977. Some highlights include: 25/5/1976 it was reported that the newly formed Tandem Bicycle Club would be holding their meetings at Kooyong the first Sunday of each month. 30/6/1978 it was reported that in April the Kooyong complex of buildings was named H.M. Lightfoot Centre after the immediate past President of AFB. The Council has been successful in having included in the learner driver book of road rules a question on the significance of the white cane. 30/7/1979 The Chairman, Mr Sitlington, represented Blind Members at the opening of the Ballarat Day Centre, Kelaston, in April. 30/6/1980 it was reported that the BMC welcomed 119 new members during the past twelve months. The Chairman, Mr Sitlington, represented Blind Members at the opening of the new George Vowell Nursing Home and Day Centre. 20/2/1981 a letter from the Chairman of VicRail, Mr Reiher, giving assurance that audio announcements will still be made in conjunction with the computer board.

Object - Master Builders Excellence in Construction Awards

Vision Australia,

Black and silver coloured plastic plaque

Historical information

In 2002, the Master Building Excellence in Construction Award (Excellence in Construction (Existing Building) 85M-110M) was presented to L.U. Simon Builders Pty Ltd for the National Information Centre, Vision Australia Foundation, Kooyong. This award hung in the main corridor of the building, opposite the middle doorway from the drop off area, from 2002 until the building's refurbishment in 2017.

Object

Vision Australia,

1 wooden shield with engraved silver plate

Historical information

"This tablet commemorates 17 years of loving service given by Mrs Celeste Baird to the choir and blind members of The Association 1945-1962".

Inscriptions & Markings

This tablet commemorates 17 years of loving service given by Mrs Celeste Baird to the choir and blind members of The Association 1945-1962

Artwork

Vision Australia,

1 art original in gold/brown frame with printed description

Historical information

Framed portrait of Elsie Henderson who was a tireless worker for the Association for the Blind. From 1934 until the 1960s Elsie Henderson worked at the Association for the Blind as a home visitor for women who were blind or vision impaired. Blind herself, Ms Henderson had 300 women on her visitation list and would visit three to four women daily. She wears a mid-blue jacket with a floral shirt, pearl necklace and her MBE attached to her jacket. This painting hung in the former Kooyong Day Centre until it was demolished in 1999.

Object - Small Braille slate

Vision Australia,

1 metal Braille frame

Historical information

Designed to create an impression on paper, the slate allows users to create Braille by guiding the stylus into the correct alignment to produce Braille, through the applied use of pressure that creates a depression on one size of the paper and a raised dot on the alternative side. In this example, the frame has two hinges which allow it to sit over the paper edge, and a single line of Braille could be written.

Object

Vision Australia,

1 blue and white dog coat with red tartan lining

Historical information

Blue synthetic dog coat with red tartan brushed cotton lining. The words ' SEDA' and 'SEEING EYE DOGS australia' are writtin in white on both sides of the coat, with the SEDA logo located above the words. On one side, a set of four paw prints are adjacent to the writing. Velcro straps secure the coat to the dog across the stomach and chest.

Inscriptions & Markings

SEDA SEEING EYE DOGS australia

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x col. photograph

Historical information

Receptionist Chris Davies, welcomes Mrs Elsie Taylor to the official opening of the Low Vision Clinic and Day Centre Extensions on July 18, 1983

Inscriptions & Markings

1983

Text - Royal Blind Society of NSW Council meeting minutes: 22/2/1993 - 30/6/1997

Vision Australia,

1 volume

Historical information

These minutes contain information on attendees, meeting chairs, apologies, matters arising out of minutes, correspondence, subscriptions, donations and general business. Reports are also included from Honorary Treasurer, Finance, Corporate Services, Accommodation Services, Rehabilitation, Library Services, Marketing, Mitchell Manufacturing, Administration Support, Information Technology and Personnel. 6/9/1993 The General Manager reported on the Strategic Overview and Implementation Plan. The core services would be Library Services, Rehabilitation Services and Technology Services. RBS would withdraw from providing Mobility Services and Talking Magazines unless by contract. In both cases there was existing services of a comparable standard and hence clients would not be adversely affected. RBS reduce its staff by 38 positions. 25/11/1996 Council members agreed that the Library Services Department be merged into the Information Technology Services Department. 28/1/1997 The CEO stated an opportunity for RBS to become a member of an international consortium known as DAISY (Digital Accessible Information SYtem). Whose main goal is establish a World Standard Digital Talking Book System for people who are blind and vision impaired. 1/4/1997 it was reported there are now 6 agencies including RBS comprising the Australia & New Zealand Group, as member of the DAISY consortium. Council approved that the CEO attend the first meeting of the Consortium on April 18-20.

Image

Vision Australia,

3 x B/W photographs and 3 col. photographs

Historical information

Don Dunstan (Kelaston manager), John Wicking (AFB President), Councillor Hitchcock (Branch Committee member) and Councillor Flynn at the opening of the Low Vision Clinic and Day Centre extension on 18 July 1983.

Image

Vision Australia,

Col. negatives of Carols by Candlelight rehearsal

Historical information

Rehearsal night at Ormond Hall for the 1981 RVIB Carols by Candlelight performance

Object - UNO original cards

Vision Australia,

UNO playing cards with braille embossed on top left-hand and bottom right-hand corners in red cardboard box

Historical information

A set of UNO cards with printed instructions and a single Braille page. On the box is marked 'Braille UNO game 26787'. This set was used by Tilly Aston members when on holiday.

Image

Vision Australia,

10 x B/W photographs

Historical information

Sir Rohan Delacombe opens the new wing of Mirridong Nursing home, named in honour of long-time and tireless worker, Katherine Rose. Pictures show Sir Rohan meeting residents, addressing the crowd, unveiling the plaque, walking through the wing and signing the visitors book, accompanied by his wife, Mrs Delacombe, Katherine Rose and a man in military dress. The last image is of Katherine Rose addressing the crowd under the 'Mirridong Home for the Blind' sign.

Text - Newspaper clippings 18

Vision Australia,

1 folder with newspaper cuttings

Historical information

News stories including fundraising events.

Inscriptions & Markings

Various articles from 1946 to 1957

Text - Out and About: RVIB Auxiliaries newsletters 2002 (March, June, December)

Vision Australia,

34 pages of text and images

Historical information

RVIB Auxiliaries raised monies for the organisation at a grassroots level, via a variety of meetings, fundraisers and events. To keep them in touch with head office and to let branches what other branches were doing across the state, regular newsletters were sent out. In the 2002 newsletters, celebrations were held for Barwon Heads (60 years), Cohuna, Wodonga, Murtoa, Yarrawonga (70 years), news from around Victoria as well as events and staffing changes at head office, and memories of those Auxiliary members who had passed in the year. Interviews with Elizabeth Davies from Sorrento Auxiliary, retiring staff member Carol O'Reilly, departing Dimboola Auxiliary members Ern and Ena Rudolph, For Sight Week, 'See the World through their eyes' corporate breakfast and High Tea at the Windsor campaigns are also mentioned.

Text - 1998 TDK Australian Audio Book Award

Vision Australia,

1 x A3 sheet

Historical information

To encourage the development of audio books, a series of awards were established by the National Library of Australia in 1988, and sponsored by TDK from 1991 until their demise in 2000. Open to both commercial and non-commercial publishers, it aimed to recognise the quality achievements by individuals and publishing houses and to promote the inclusion of audio books into the mainstream market. In 1998 the winner of the Unabridged Non-Fiction Category was "Dreamtime Alice" by Louis Braille Books.

Inscriptions & Markings

Illustration of seaside town by an unknown artist between header and recipient

Image

Vision Australia,

4 x colour photographs

Historical information

James Thompson and Rachel Beer look at a display in the Katherine Rose wing at Mirridong Nursing home.

Inscriptions & Markings

Rose (2)