Stories Organisations Projects About Login

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

web
http://www.visionaustralia.org
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 .

Leave a comment

1042 items

Object

Vision Australia,

1 metal pin

Historical information

Metal badge consisting of an oval shaped medallion coloured with a dark blue edge and light blue centre, white cane across length of medallion and inscriptions written around the edge. Clasp is silver coloured metal on both tie pins and badges. Marked: On front of badge : Association for the Blind.

Inscriptions & Markings

Association for the Blind

Image

Vision Australia,

3 x col. photographs

Historical information

ABC journalist and presenter Edwin Maher is given an award from the Association for the Blind offices in Mount Eliza.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of Daryl Somers

Historical information

Portrait photograph of performer Daryl Somers, most likely supplied for inclusion in a Carols by Candlelight program.

Text - RVIB Woodend Auxiliary

Vision Australia,

Letters -- newspaper clippings -- index cards and various loose papers

Historical information

The Woodend RVIB Auxiliary formed on November 8, 1929. 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 1973 - 1985. Correspondence to and from RVIB head office ranging between 1990 - 2000. Newspaper article from 1990 'RVIB honour'; The Gisborne and Woodend auxiliaries of the RVIB have been invited to the unveiling of two plaques made in honour of the late Miss Betty Ross Watt and the late Mrs Caroline Mary Goldie at RVIB in St. Kilda Road. These ladies were foundation members of the Gisborne and Woodend auxiliaries respectively, and they worked hard and inspired others for over 50 years. As a result of their generous bequest to the institute, four sound-proofed recording studios have been completed. Other funds donated by the two women have been used for the extensions of the RVIB talking book library building and additions to library facilities.

Object

Vision Australia,

Text - Minutes of the White Cane Day Committee 1983

Vision Australia,

26 pages

Historical information

Minutes of the fifth White Cane Day organising committee, chaired by Bryan Sitlington.

Text - Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind pupil register

Vision Australia,

1 v.

Historical information

The RVIB Burwood school recorded student information as per educational requirements for a registered school. These registers cover the periods 1967-1972, 1972-1977 and 1978-1988. The following information was recorded: full name, date of birth, date of admission, full name of parent or guardian, full address of parent or guardian, school last attended, grade into which admitted or transferred to during, date/month/date of last attendance and destination of pupil. Some notes on the inside cover and individual registers are stored in this folder with string binding.

Object - RVIB Auxiliary 25 year badge

Vision Australia,

1 metal pin

Historical information

To honour the commitment of its Auxiliary, badges were awarded to commemorate 25 years of service. These consisted of a oval with a gold lighthouse on a blue background and the words 'Auxiliary' in gold across the middle of the lighthouse. Around the outside, 'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind' was written in gold against a navy blue background, as well as the number '25' at the base of the lighthouse.

Inscriptions & Markings

'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind' 'Auxiliary'

Image

Vision Australia,

8 x col. photographs and 10 negatives

Historical information

John Moule hands out Life Governor awards to various recipients at Kooyong.

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 B/W photograph

Historical information

A Certificate of Merit from the AFB is presented to an unknown Bendigo organisation (possibly a corrections institution). Three men hold the certificate; two in suits, one in a workshirt and pants.

Inscriptions & Markings

Bendigo page 3" (illegible) Photo No. 14 #85 Flanges top and bottom

Artwork

Vision Australia,

1 art original in gold frame

Historical information

Framed portrait of Diana J. Jones who the first female president of the Association for the Blind since Tilly Aston. It is part of a series of paintings commissioned by the AFB Board to commemorate the work of past presidents of the organisation. Mrs Jones sits facing the painter with both hands clasped in her lap. She is wearing a black double breasted blazer, white shirt, blue beaded necklace and earrings and a gold bracelet . A white kerchief sits in her breast pocket. Diana Jones served for 8 years on the General Committee before being elected President. During this time she was deputy chairman of the Reach Out Appeal to raise funds for the building program and President of the Honorary Services Group which co-ordinated volunteers and gave them a spokesperson on the General Committee. In her 8 years as President a great deal was accomplished. New centres were opened or extended throughout Victoria and the Metropolitan area, volunteer services expanded and the Vision Resource Centre at Kooyong was built into which 3RPH radio was relocated. A Vision Information hotline, audiology services and the National Centre for Ageing and Sensory Loss were established, the Braille and Talking Book libraries was incorporated into the Association and the Charlie Bradley Cricket Pavilion opened at Kooyong. In 1990 Diana Jones became a member of the first Board of Directors of the newly incorporated Association for the Blind Ltd which ushered in a new era, requiring strict observance of financial and accounting methods in order to ensure continued Government funding. Mrs Jones was highly regarded by clients, volunteers and staff as a capable hard-working leader. Her services to the Association and over many years to the wider community, were recognised in her appointment as a Member of the Order of Australia in the 1993 Queen's Birthday Honours. She passed away in July 2009.

Inscriptions & Markings

The plaque at the base of the painting reads 'Dame Diana J. Jones, AM DSJ / President 1984- 1992 / Association for the Blind'.

Object - For Those Who Cannot See badge

Vision Australia,

Metal pin with enamel

Historical information

To raise funds for the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind, these badges were sold by street sellers in Melbourne. A gold colour Australian coat of arms (Kangaroo and emu beside a shield with a star at the top), sits above a blue enamelled boomerang. In the shield is the letter 'B' in blue enamel. 'For those who cannot see' is written in gold lettering across the boomerang.

Inscriptions & Markings

For those who cannot see

Object - Sailmakers sewing palm

Vision Australia,

1 leather folded band with indented metal square attached and leather lacing fastening at back

Historical information

The sewing palm was used by visually impaired workers in the mat making workshop at the Royal Victorian for the Blind Institute during the binding of mats to protect their palms from the 17cm-long curved mat making needle.

Text

Vision Australia,

1 certificate

Historical information

Certificate reads "Bendigo District Garden Competition. Sponsored by Sandhurst Trustees Ltd., The Bendigo Advertiser, Southern Cross Network, Radio 3BO, Bendigo Garden Club, National Australia Travel, Coliban Region Water Authority and Payntings Nursery. First Prize. This is to certify that the garden of Association for the Blind was awarded First Prize by the judges in Section Industrial and Public Institutional Gardens in 1993." Signed by the K. Juvell [sp.?] for the Judges, undated. This certificate features gold printed text with floral motifs on the top right-hand, and both bottom corners.

Object

Vision Australia,

Wooden walking stick with ornate metal topper

Historical information

Prior to the idea of canes being painted white in the 1930's, vision impaired people used canes of various colours and styles to assist them. This walking stick is engraved with the initials 'GC' and would have been an expensive item given the ornate metal topper. The wood is in good condition and looks little used, particularly given the lack of a protective tip at the base.

Inscriptions & Markings

The letters 'GC' are engraved into a metal plate on the head of the stick.

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.

Text - RVIB Chronic

Vision Australia,

1 v.

Historical information

This staff newsletter aimed to keep staff members up to date with what was happening around RVIB, with its often informal manner and chatty style. A Rebel Chronic was produced at times, which consisted of two A3 folded pages.

Inscriptions & Markings

Also titled: The RVIB Chronic, The newsletter of the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind, The Rebel Chronic

Object - ANZ Guidanz card

Vision Australia,

1 plastic plate with rectangle hole

Historical information

To assist with blind and visually impaired people signing documents, a signature guide creates a rectangular block of space that fits most signature areas on paper. This example was produced by ANZ Bank to fit over cheque books provided to customers. It has space for the date, whom the cheque was for, the written amount and the amount in symbols, and the cheque stub, as well as the signature.

Inscriptions & Markings

ANZ Guidanz card

Text

Vision Australia,

Object

Vision Australia,

1 wicker cricket ball

Historical information

aThis cricket ball is made of cane wicker and was used in cricket games with visually impaired players by people who lived or were educated at the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind from the 1920s through till 1972. It is a circular shape made of plaited strips of woven natural cane and is lighter than a conventional cricket ball. The hollow centre of the ball contains pieces of twisted metal pieces which rattle as the ball is moved to aid players in tracking the ball's movement. The stumps also had bells attached so fielders knew when the batsman was out. Blind cricket was invented in Melbourne in 1922 when two blind factory workers started playing a game using a tin can containing rocks. The game soon gained popularity and the Victorian Blind Cricketers' Association was formed. Mr William Paterson, a volunteer worker and advocate for blind people for over 60 years, was instrumental in acquiring and developing the sports ground and clubhouse in Glenferrie Road Kooyong, Victoria on behalf of the Association for the Advancement of the Blind (now called Vision Australia). In 1928 play began on the world's first sports ground for blind cricketers, in the first official blind cricket match. Blind cricket is now played internationally. This particular cricket ball was awarded to William Paterson Esq in 1928 in recognition of his support in establishing the world's first blind cricket ground in Kooyong. On the front of this ball is attached a small metal crest with an inscription: 'Presented to W.H. Paterson, Esq as a token of esteem for his interest in Blind cricket being the first ball bowled on the cricket ground for Blind Kooyong 7. 4.28'.

Inscriptions & Markings

'Presented to W.H. Paterson, Esq as a token of esteem for his interest in Blind cricket being the first ball bowled on the cricket ground for Blind Kooyong 7. 4.28'.

Object - Nine men's Morris

Vision Australia,

1 yellow and red board in purple box +1 Braille booklet.

Historical information

This game of strategy was played in the Roman Empire and medieval England. Each player has nine pegs and must use these to first fill the board then move their pieces to create a 'mill' (three linked points). For each 'mill' created, an opponent's piece can be removed. In this version of the game, a rule booklet in Braille is provided with the tactile board and pegs. RNIB catalogue number: 9212.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of Julie Anthony.

Historical information

Photograph of singer Julie Anthony, most likely supplied for a Carols by Candlelight program.

Inscriptions & Markings

exclusively on Wizard records & tapes (front right base)

Text - Association for the Advancement of the Blind monthly meeting minutes from 17/8/1936 to 17/7/1939

Vision Australia,

1 paper register

Historical information

Minutes of the quarterly meetings of the AAB Committee held at the Kooyong Club House. Minutes contain matters discussed from correspondence and via individual committee members. These include the unsuccessful application for a mouth organ band (p.14), rescinding of this motion (p.20) and formation of the Harmonica Band (p.33 & 35), as well as a leaflet for the Association's Summer Concert (p.146).

Object - Silver Braille fob watch

Vision Australia,

Silver fob watch with raised dots to indicate number position.

Historical information

This timepiece uses raised dots to indicate the position of the numbers, which the wearer could then use to orient themselves and tell the time from the metal hands. The 12 position is indicated by three dots, with the 3,6,9 positions by two dots. The user would start with a finger at the centre of the face and work outwards to the end of each hand to determine position and hence be able to figure out the time. Since the watch is designed and made for touching, the metal hands are particularly robust.

Object - Playing cards with Braille

Vision Australia,

Playing cards with red, black and white design with braille embossing at top left-hand and bottom right-hand corners in (red or blue) metal hinged box.

Historical information

A 52 playing card set (plus two jokers) with Braille designed by the leading firm of playing card manufacturers in England during this period - Thomas de la Rue & Company.

Object - Easiplay 2

Vision Australia,

Plastic rectangular grey coloured audio player with buttons for navigational controls, power cord and 3 buttons

Historical information

This Easiplay 2 model was produced by CSI (Clarke & Smith Industries) using a combination of overseas and locally made parts; however demand for compact discs was increasing by this time and the players were not financially viable. After the death of John Clarke in 1997 and the subsequent loss of it's major contract with RNIB, the company was wound up in 2004.

Inscriptions & Markings

Clarke + Smith Model 1322 Serial number 9701-0011

Text - Merle Reid ... a book in her honour

Vision Australia,

Approx. 25 pages of text

Historical information

An album of pictures, memories and a report in honour of Merle Reid, a teacher at the RVIB Burwood School who passed away unexpectedly on March 25, 1985. Originally stored in a brown photograph album, this book contained tributes to the late teacher and a plan for an outdoor space redesigned to become an activity area, including elements she had promoted during her teaching career.

Text - Schedule of addresses to Certificate No. QEC12897, issued 20 March 2003

Vision Australia,

1 certificate

Historical information

Schedule lists the 12 site addresses of RVIB offices included under the Certificate of of Quality Assurance Registration QEC12897.

Text - Newspaper clippings 11

Vision Australia,

1 green notebook with newspaper cuttings

Historical information

To keep current with media articles on how vision impaired people, blindness organisations and their activities were reported in the press, books of newspaper cuttings were created. News stories were taken from local, regional and national papers covering a variety subjects.

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

Vision Australia,

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x B/W photograph

Historical information

Katherine Rose with Mrs Delacombe and Sir Rohan Delacombe, Governor of Victoria, at the opening of the new wing at Mirridong, named in her honour.

Inscriptions & Markings

Mrs Katherine Rose meets Lady Delacombe & Gov. of Victoria Sir Rohan Delacombe prior to opening of K. Rose Wing.

Text - Lady Nell 'Seeing Eye' Dog School and Rehabilitation Centre for the Blind

Vision Australia,

36 pages, portraits.

Historical information

A booklet promoting the work of the Lady Nell 'seeing eye' dog school from 1977. The school at the time was the only original 'seeing eye' dog school in Victoria, which was registered with the Hospitals and Charities Commission and was financially assisted by the Victorian State Government. The booklet was for sale for $1.00.

Object - Reinecker Reha-Technik Videomatic H

Vision Australia,

Electronic reading aid inside black vinyl case, with two brochures and a manual

Historical information

This portable reading device provided the ability for people to scan printed items and see the enlarged result on a television screen. Weighing almost 9 kilos (with batteries) and able to be used for up to 2.5 hours each time the battery was charged, it was hailed as "particularly robust at low weight". Pictures in the accompanying brochure demonstrate it's use to read a newspaper, in the classroom and on the beach.

Inscriptions & Markings

'Dr Krause & Associates, 9 Collins Parade, Hackham, SA, 5163' has been stamped on the brochures and is on a type written label inside the lid.

Object - Signature guide

Vision Australia,

1 plastic plate with rectangle hole

Historical information

To assist with blind and visually impaired people signing documents, a signature guide creates a rectangular block of space that fits most signature areas on paper. This example was produced by RNIB and provides directions on usage.

Inscriptions & Markings

Signature Guide Cat No. 9020 Have window placed over signature space hold card firmly in place with your hand write your signature within the opening of the window

Object - RVIB Auxiliary badge

Vision Australia,

1 metal pin

Historical information

To identify members of its Auxiliary, badges were provided. These consisted of a oval with a gold lighthouse on a pale blue background and the words 'For the Blind' in gold across the middle, either side of the lighthouse. Around the outside, 'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind' was written in gold against a navy blue background, with 'Auxiliary' at the base of the badge.

Inscriptions & Markings

'Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind' 'Auxiliary'

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photographs of John Cook

Historical information

Portrait of John Cook, probably taken for the Association's annual report

Object - Vision Australia Foundation Tilly Aston Award: 25 Year Award

Vision Australia,

1 maroon wooden stand with silver tone inlaid medallion, with illustrations

Significance

To honour 25 years of service provided, a silver coloured medallion inset to a wooden column was awarded to individuals. On the front is a cameo of a woman wearing a pendant and an old fashioned ruffled blouse. Around the outside is written 'Vision Australia Foundation Tilly Aston Award' and below this '25 Year Award'.

Inscriptions & Markings

25 Years Award

Image

Vision Australia,

1 x B/W photograph and 1 x colour photograph

Historical information

Ella Vicars-Foote, John Wilson and Kitty Rose at the opening of the Ella Vicars Foote Day Room at Mirridong.

Inscriptions & Markings

B/W - 62,57, 0755, 6, Page 3 Colour - Ella Vicars Foote & John Wilson & Kitty Rose at opening of Ella Vicars Foote Day Room, 1986

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of man looking at relief map of Wynyard Station

Historical information

Ron Goodwin reads a tactile map of Wynyard Railway Station in Sydney's CBD. The map was made at the Sydney Tesol College with wood working machinery and painting/decorating sections. In front of Ron sits a ultrasonic torch.

Inscriptions & Markings

14/69051 Ann. Report Orientation - historical

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph

Historical information

Tilly Aston playing a reed organ, often referred to as a harmonium. An unidentified woman sits next to the organ. In this informal shot a middle-aged Tilly is wearing a checked jacket with white collared blouse and long skirt. The organ has a number of photographs upon it and appears to be in someone's lounge room.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of John Cook presenting boots to a staff member

Historical information

John Cook holds one extreme platformed boot and looks on as as female staff member views the other one.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of Hubert Opperman looking at a wicker basket made by a blind man.

Historical information

Association for the Blind board member Hubert Opperman in his role as the Australian Minister for Immigration, visited the new Day Centre of the Jewish Blind Society at Stamford Hill, London. He discusses handwork with Mr Lew Dobrin and an instructress Mrs K. Amaral.

Image

Vision Australia,

Copy of a sepia toned photograph

Historical information

An image from a footrace that was held for blind individuals, using ropes as guide lines. Competitors held cloths to prevent their hands from the friction as they navigated the course without canes or a guide.

Image

Vision Australia,

1 B/W photograph

Historical information

Sir Rupert Hamer, who proclaimed October 15 as White Cane Day for the State of Victoria, holding a white cane and standing between two blind ladies. The one on the right is possibly Mrs Alice McClelland.

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph of Blair Edgar

Historical information

Portrait image of one of the Carols by Candlelight performers. Image used in program.

Inscriptions & Markings

23% Blair Edgar p11

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W photograph

Historical information

Joyce Evans demonstrates the ultrasonic guide at St George Girls High School in March 1970.

Inscriptions & Markings

St George Leader Mobility - historical

Image

Vision Australia,

B/W scanned image of the Brass Band of the RVIB (taken from an annual report)

Historical information

In this scanned image from an annual report, the RVIB Brass Band holds their instruments at the ready. This 12 piece band was made up of blind students and workers, and had two drummers holding the beat for 10 brass instruments.

Text - Out and About: RVIB Auxiliaries newsletters 2005 (March, June, Spring)

Vision Australia,

20 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. The final meeting of the Central Council of Auxiliaries at the home of Trudi Westh, and the winding down of the Leongatha, Essendon, Korumburra, Greensborough, Wodonga and Koo Wee Rup branches, the launch of the RVIB history book 'Lighthouse on the Boulevard' and an interview with RVIB client Karen Nelson about her upcoming book on her life story.