Drought Stories... community...Audio: Charlie Gillingham talks about the impact of the drought on the Murrabit community...A selection of interviews outlining the impact on local communities experiencing drought....Mixed farmer Charlie Gillingham talks to Pat Gillingham about the impact of the ongoing drought on the Murrabit community in northern Victoria....“The social impact it has is huge, but the footy club survives," says Charlie Gillingham, mixed farmer from Murrabit. In this story the community talks about drought: its social impact, resilience, changes to farming practises, changing weather ...
“The social impact it has is huge, but the footy club survives," says Charlie Gillingham, mixed farmer from Murrabit.
In this story the community talks about drought: its social impact, resilience, changes to farming practises, changing weather patterns and water trading.
The median annual rainfall of the Wimmera and northern plains of Victoria is 420mm. But this median does not convey the deluges that sometimes double the figure, or the dry spells that can halve it. Like semi-arid places elsewhere, the climate cycle of this region is variable.
Aboriginal people have had thousands of years to adapt to the fluctuations, whilst recent settlers are still learning.
The introduction of the Land Act of 1869 accompanied by the high rainfall La Niña years of the early 1870s brought selectors to northern Victoria and the Wimmera. A series of dry years in the 1880s initiated storage and channel projects to assist them to stay.
Irrigation was introduced in 1886 to settle the northern plains and was expanded under closer settlement legislation. The drought years from 1895 to 1902 came to be known as the Federation Drought. Water supplies dried up completely in the El Niño years of 1914 and 1915 and people took the opportunity to picnic in the empty bed of the River Murray.
Drought hit again during World War Two, and then in the period 1965-8. The drought of 1982-3 was short but devastating. Our most recent drought, lasting more than a decade, broke late in 2010 with extensive flooding.
Policy responses have changed over the years and with the recent onset of human induced climate change, continual adaptation will be required.
In 2009, the History Council of Victoria captured resident’s experiences in the project titled Drought Stories: a spoken and visual history of the current drought in Victoria. There were two aims to the project: to create a historic record of the experience, and to strengthen community capacity in rural and regional areas through telling and listening to local stories.
Two types of collections were produced: Drought Stories Local Collections, held by historical societies, and the Drought Stories Central Archive, a selection of interviews held by the State Library of Victoria.
The History Council of Victoria believes that the project material provides a rich resource to assist researchers understand Australian society at a crucial and revealing stage of adjustment to the Australian environment.
Legislation and other land records are held at the Public Record Office Victoria.
A Sensory Experience... deaf community... round of predictions of the demise of the deaf community. But this distinctive community has always rolled onwards. Its greatest boost was the recognition by linguists in the 1960s that sign languages were genuine languages, and in particular... and experience has emerged. 'A Sensory Experience' explores the world through the eyes and ears of the deaf and blind communities in Victoria and seeks to demystify some of the stereotypes and preconceptions that survive to this day. The four films that make up ...
The mainstream understanding of deaf and blind people has shifted over time. When once it was thought that blind people should be taken care of and sheltered, or deaf people taught to hear and speak, a deeper awareness of distinct culture and experience has emerged.
'A Sensory Experience' explores the world through the eyes and ears of the deaf and blind communities in Victoria and seeks to demystify some of the stereotypes and preconceptions that survive to this day.
The four films that make up part of this story highlight Victoria’s Deaf and blind communities within an historical framework, fostering new insights and provoking thought about the way we understand these communities today. Each film is an open invitation to share the experience of the world from another perspective.
The accompanying images complement the films, giving further understanding to the rich history held within the two groups. In addition, two contemporary essays by prominent writers offer the unique opportunity to share their lived experiences. Finally, the story contains an education kit for secondary students, which allows for a deeper study and understanding.
Migrants Enriching Australia... Greek community...Migrants Enriching Australia was born of a project to assist ethnic community groups preserve and manage their material heritage.This story consists of 21 story objects - including videos, audio recordings, images and text - and two educational ...
Migrants Enriching Australia was born of a project to assist ethnic community groups preserve and manage their material heritage.
This story consists of 21 story objects - including videos, audio recordings, images and text - and two educational resources available at the bottom of the page.
During the research a few people emerged who vividly carried a particular story about immigration and settlement to Victoria. These included Peter Yiannoudes who introduced Greek films to Melbourne in the 1950s. He carried his portable projector on a train and visited small country towns and even a farmhouse around Victoria, in order to share this dynamic Greek heritage with Greek expatriates.
Janina Archabuz (Pani Babscha) is a Polish grandmother who carefully designed and sewed multiple copies of intricate costumes for a Polish dance troupe in Ardeer, in Melbourne’s west. Janina is self-taught, however the costumes are exquisitely sewn and meticulously detailed. These costumes gave the Polish group visibility when performing traditional dances in the community, and contributed to their community’s transition from being Poles to being Australians of Polish origin.
The research for the Multicultural Communities’ Collection Project revealed incredibly rich collections – their photographs, documents, costumes and memorabilia from their countries of origin, their community members’ journeys to Australia and the process of settlement into this country and this state - held by community groups, each different and many reliant on individuals who valued their history and their community identity. The project was based on the idea that understanding of and control over community heritage strengthens community identity, which in turn contributes to an Australia which is enriched by diverse ethnic groups living side by side harmoniously.
The Multicultural Communities’ Collection Project began in 2011 - firstly as a project of the then Arts Victoria and later Museums Australia (Victoria). It involved visiting up to 40 ethno specific community groups and providing them with professional assistance to preserve and store their material heritage. There was also training in the documentation and digitisation of these collections, and including them in the web based cataloguing system, Victorian Collections.
Ethnic Communities Council of Victoria (ECCV) is the peak body for Victoria’s multicultural communities and have been advocating their needs and concerns to government for 40 years. It is the principle liaison point between multicultural communities, the government and the wider community. The ECCV welcomed the opportunity to facilitate these two films for Culture Victoria, to share more broadly these stories about immigrants and how they have enriched our community.
Women on Farms... community...Icon selected to represent the Horsham Gathering. The organisers of the Horsham gathering chose two interwoven cogs from a 'well used' Shearer grain harvester to 'symbolise how women are the cogs that keep the community turning. Donated... a wonderful sense of support, particularly crucial due to the shocking rural crises of the last decade. Importantly, the gatherings help promote and establish the notion of rural women as farmers, business women and community leaders.The relationship between ...
In 1990, a group of rural and farming women met in Warragul for what was to be the inaugural Women on Farms Gathering.
A group of local women had developed the idea while involved in a Women on Farms Skill Course. It was to prove inspirational, and the gatherings have been held annually ever since, throughout regional Victoria.
The Women on Farms Gathering provides a unique opportunity for women to network, increase their skills base in farming and business practices, share their stories and experience a wonderful sense of support, particularly crucial due to the shocking rural crises of the last decade. Importantly, the gatherings help promote and establish the notion of rural women as farmers, business women and community leaders.
The relationship between Museums Victoria and the Women on Farms Gathering is a model of museums working with living history.
Savoy Ladies Group... community... in their lives before coming to Australia. This was the experience of those who left Italy before World War Two and even well into the post-war migration boom of the 1960s. Unlike the close communities of their home, the spread-out farms on the Ovens, Buffalo...The Italian community of Myrtleford, in the picturesque Ovens Valley in alpine North Eastern Victoria, arrived mainly to work in the tobacco industry which once thrived in the area. The region now has a distinctive Italian-Australian culture ...
The Italian community of Myrtleford, in the picturesque Ovens Valley in alpine North Eastern Victoria, arrived mainly to work in the tobacco industry which once thrived in the area. The region now has a distinctive Italian-Australian culture with settled second, third and fourth generation Italian families.
Tobacco farming was a lonely experience for many of the Italian women who migrated to Myrtleford. Unlike their husbands, the women stayed largely on the farms and lacked social contact outside of their immediate circle. Once their children grew up and mechanisation changed the labour requirements on the farms, women were frequently on their own.
The Myrtleford Savoy Ladies Group was founded in 1983 by nuns concerned about the social isolation of women in the area. It has been a great success, forming a network of companionship amongst women of Italian heritage to this day.
Cultural Warning: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander users of this website are warned that this story contains images of deceased persons and places that could cause sorrow.
Indigenous Stories about Family... community...Family is central to our lives: from our immediate families to our neighbourhoods and communities. Explore the present and our history, from a celebration of culture to a reflection on hard times, such as the stolen generations, share our stories ...
Family is central to our lives: from our immediate families to our neighbourhoods and communities.
Explore the present and our history, from a celebration of culture to a reflection on hard times, such as the stolen generations, share our stories about family and what family means to us.
There are stories about indigenous families in different Victorian communities, the memories of Gunditjmara Elder Aunty Iris Lovett-Gardiner and her life at Lake Condah Mission. Stories of football, dance and culture and life in the Yorta Yorta community of Echuca as well as much, much more.
CULTURAL WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander users are warned that this material may contain images and voices of deceased persons, and images of places that could cause sorrow.
John Teasdale – Chronicle of a Country Life... community... (1936 – 2004) was a farmer at Rupanyup in the Victorian Wimmera. He was also a keen and highly accomplished cinematographer, filming consistently for over 50 years to create a long-term record of working life on a family farm and of community life ...
These little films from Victoria's Western Plains are about the actual and the everyday.
They have no hint of sensationalism in them. They are plain and utterly honest. They tell us about tractors and farming machinery. About fire and flood and snow. We glimpse Anzac Day and are touched by the irony of people remembering in a time and place few people remember or think about today. But there is no sentimentality in these films either. They are just plain good. - Martin Flanagan.
John Teasdale (1936 – 2004) was a farmer at Rupanyup in the Victorian Wimmera. He was also a keen and highly accomplished cinematographer, filming consistently for over 50 years to create a long-term record of working life on a family farm and of community life in a particular part of rural Victoria.
When television arrived in Australia in 1956, John successfully applied to the ABC to become a 'stringer' cameraman, shooting regional footage that was frequently included in state-wide news broadcasts and in segments produced particularly for regional viewers. John continued in this role for thirty years, until changing technology eventually made the role of 'regional stringers' obsolete.
The Teasdale film collection constitutes a nationally significant record of working and community life in a small Australian dry-land farming community, reflecting enormous changes in farming practices as well as transformations in the character and scale of community life in and around Rupanyup. At a time when many dry-land farming communities are actively reinventing themselves as their underlying social and economic structures change dramatically, John Teasdale’s films provide a critical point of reference and affirmation.
Artist and filmmaker Malcolm McKinnon, with the support of John Teasdale’s family, is undertaking ongoing work to interpret and celebrate this rich and resonant archive.
Nyabana Riek... Sudanese community... camp. Finally, in 1995, Nyabana reached Australia. When she arrived, Melbourne's Sudanese community was small; she was the first teenager from the Nuer language group and spoke little English. But things are different now - more family members have come ...
Nyabana Riek left Nasir, southern Sudan, to escape civil war when she was only 9 years old.
With her older sister Mary, she travelled to a refugee camp in Itang, Ethiopia in 1986. But after years in various camps, the sisters made a dangerous trek at night across the mountains between Ethiopia and Kenya. The 12-hour journey was steep, sharp rocks tore their shoes and soldiers patrolled both sides of the border. They managed to cross the border into Kenya and then spent 3 years in a Kenyan refugee camp.
Finally, in 1995, Nyabana reached Australia. When she arrived, Melbourne's Sudanese community was small; she was the first teenager from the Nuer language group and spoke little English. But things are different now - more family members have come to Melbourne, Nyabana completed a Bachelor of Business Management, and the Sudanese community and support networks are growing.
Football Stories from Country Victoria... community... communities. These 21 films include stories of legendary games, long time campaigners, rivalries, reluctant mergers, and of things lost and lamented. Collected from all corners of Victoria. ...
Country Football. On one hand it's just a game. On the other, it's life or death...
Films in this collection are a record of living memory: how the game has changed; how it continues to evolve; and how football is inextricably linked with our communities.
These 21 films include stories of legendary games, long time campaigners, rivalries, reluctant mergers, and of things lost and lamented. Collected from all corners of Victoria.
Reinventing the Brass Band... community... and ceremonial events. At the Moreland Band Hall in Brunswick there’s a gallery of photographs and a cabinet of trophies reflecting this illustrious history of community music making. In more recent decades community interest in traditional brass bands has waned ...
MORELAND CITY BAND - and its antecedents in Brunswick and Coburg - has been pumping out brassy tunes since 1882. Originally developed as an essential civic instrumentality (pun intended), the band has long served to enliven parades, festivals and ceremonial events. At the Moreland Band Hall in Brunswick there’s a gallery of photographs and a cabinet of trophies reflecting this illustrious history of community music making.
In more recent decades community interest in traditional brass bands has waned. The brass band isn’t dead, but at least in Moreland it was an institution in serious need of reinvention. So in 2008, facing what seemed to be a terminal decline, the Band embarked on a process of transformation, working to attract new ideas, new people and new energy. Since that time, Moreland City Band has created a whole new model for what a community band might be.
The reinvented Band maintains the best aspects of the local band tradition, supporting musicians of all abilities to play and develop. The band still performs at local festivals and events, but it’s no longer simply a brass band. Under the energetic direction of trumpet maestro Scott Tinkler, the MCB Phoenix Project has arisen from the ashes of a traditional British-style brass band to embrace more diverse instrumentation and a broader, more original musical repertoire. There’s also a resident learner’s group (the MCB Krysallis Band) and a wide range of other ensembles practicing and performing every day and night of the week: big bands, jazz groups, African drummers, ukulele ensembles, avant-garde composers and arrangers, brass choirs, youth bands and others.
It’s dynamic, open and inclusive, deliberately blurring boundaries between musical genres and between professional and amateur musicians. Moreland City Band ensembles include players aged under ten through to musicians in their eighties, and people from all kinds of cultural backgrounds.
The band’s home at Cross Street in Brunswick is a rehearsal space, a performance venue, a recording studio, a music library and still, in some ways, an old-fashioned band hall, all rolled into one.
New players are always welcome - www.morelandcityband.com
Additional recordings by the MCB Phoenix Project can be heard at: https://www.reverbnation.com/morelandcityband/songs
Moreland City Band acknowledges the ongoing support of Moreland City Council.
Digital Stories of the Mind and Body... deaf community... with many health and community advocacy organisations to serve people with special needs or life issues. Participants associated with these organisations have taken part in the ACMI digital storytelling workshop to tell their unique stories of courage ...
Stories of the mind and body are a tribute to the resilience of the human mind and spirit in dealing with the challenges of the body.
The Australia Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) has developed its digital storytelling program in partnership with many health and community advocacy organisations to serve people with special needs or life issues.
Participants associated with these organisations have taken part in the ACMI digital storytelling workshop to tell their unique stories of courage and survival. These personal narratives have provided an opportunity for the participants to use their creativity and voice as a centrepiece for health promotion and social justice efforts.
History in Place... community museum...The History in Place project connects teachers and students with their local history via a community collecting society or museum. History in Place provides an innovative and practical implementation of the new Australian Curriculum in History ...
The History in Place project connects teachers and students with their local history via a community collecting society or museum.
History in Place provides an innovative and practical implementation of the new Australian Curriculum in History and Victoria's Framework of Historical Themes. It provides a framework for students to engage with their local history and heritage in a fun and challenging way using digital technologies. The program has been designed for grades 5 and 6, but has also been used for year 9s.
History in Place can be initiated either by schools or by community museums and heritage organisations. Students use collection items and interviews with local experts to create short films using tablet devices.
This story includes examples of what happens during a day of History in Place, examples of student films from the program pilot and an education toolkit (available from the Education Resources tab below) which includes course materials, instructional materials and everything that a museum and school need to implement the program.
The pilot program partnered 6 primary schools from across Victoria with local museums.
Museums participating in the pilot were: Barwon Park, Burke Museum, CO.AS.IT Museum, Golden Dragon Museum, the Mildura Arts Centre and Yarra Ranges Museum.
The project is a partnership between the Heritage Council of Victoria, the History Teachers' Association of Victoria and Culture Victoria. The pilot was funded by the Telematics Trust.
During the History in Place pilot, students used the Linking History site to research their films. Linking History is an experimental pilot in the practical application of linked open data, and is part of Portrait of a Nation: History In Place Access Project which is a Centenary of Canberra project, proudly supported by the ACT Government and the Australian Government.
Hubcaps to Creative Hubs... community... conservation”, working with the buildings’ industrial patina and fine-grained details. The mill now hosts a creative community that draws uniquely from the large spaces and mazy corners, with secrets waiting to be unearthed. Watch the trailer for a quick taste ...
The project aims to tell the stories of Geelong’s industrial sites undergoing transformation, pointing to a new creative and maker culture that connects the past with the present.
The Returned Soldier & Sailors Woollen and Worsted Mills in Rutland Street Newtown, the Federal Woollen Mills in North Geelong and the Old Paper Mills in Fyansford are all in the process of becoming new creative spaces.
Part One explores how a once-overlooked industrial site the Returned Soldiers and Serviceman’s Mills (RS&S) has become the hub for a remarkable network of artists and creative makers...and if you listen closely, you might hear sounds of the past reverberating in the building’s walls.
Part Two tells the story of the recent reinvention of the Federal Woollen Mills into a tech and creative start-up hub which marks Geelong’s 21st century pivot from industrial decline to rising creative city.
Part Three explores the Fyansford Paper Mills’ salvage and restoration, a remarkable process of “creative conservation”, working with the buildings’ industrial patina and fine-grained details. The mill now hosts a creative community that draws uniquely from the large spaces and mazy corners, with secrets waiting to be unearthed.
Watch the trailer for a quick taste of the project or enjoy the full three part documentary to learn about the transformation of these places. You can also read about how these films were supported by community grants and the people and businesses of Geelong.
‘Hubcaps to Creative Hubs’ is a creative research project by Dr Fiona Gray from Deakin University, Dr Cristina Garduño Freeman from the Australian Centre for Architectural History and Cultural Heritage at the University of Melbourne, in collaboration with industry partners Jennifer Cromarty and Helen Kostiuk of Creative Geelong Inc. The films have been made by documentary producer Nicholas Searle.
Chinese Australian Families... community... and generally accepted part of the Australian community of cultures. It is now more possible than at any time in Australia's past to publicly acknowledge with pride one's Chinese culture and ancestry. With this renewed pride more and more Australians with hidden... from Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia, as well as from further afield. The Chinese are now a highly visible and generally accepted part of the Australian community of cultures. The text above has been abstracted from an essay 'Dreams ...
Dreams of Jade and Gold: Chinese families in Australia's history
From the 1840s onwards, Chinese people have come to Australia inspired by dreams of happiness, longevity and prosperity - of 'jade and gold' in a new and strange land. For most of that time, Chinese people in Australia have been predominantly male. Most of them were temporary sojourners who came to earn money for their families back in the village - most did not intend to settle in Australia.
Despite the predominance of male sojourning, a small proportion of Chinese men in nineteenth-century Australia brought their wives and children to live with them, or married here. As Australian-born children of these families grew to adulthood, their parents would seek brides and grooms on their behalf amongst other Chinese families in Australia.
The majority of post-1905 Chinese brides of Chinese-Australian sons were never able to settle here. Some children were born in China or Hong Kong. Some were born in Australia. Families like this were split for decades, until immigration laws were relaxed.
In the nineteenth century, many of the Chinese men who wanted wives in Australia married or lived de facto with non-Chinese women. At least 500 European-Chinese partnerships are estimated to have occurred before 1900.
Despite repeated waves of racism and official discrimination from the 1840s to the 1970s, a sizeable number of families of Chinese background have put down roots in this country.
In 1973 the Whitlam government abolished racist provisions in immigration laws. Since then, the number of ethnic Chinese migrants has increased dramatically. They have come primarily as family groups - not as sojourners, but as permanent immigrants. They come not only from China and Hong Kong, but also from Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia, as well as from further afield. The Chinese are now a highly visible and generally accepted part of the Australian community of cultures.
The text above has been abstracted from an essay 'Dreams of Jade and Gold: Chinese families in Australia's history' written by Paul Macgregor for the publication The Australian Family: Images and Essays. The full text of the essay is available as part of this story.
This story is part of The Australian Family project, which involved 20 Victorian museums and galleries. The full series of essays and images are available in The Australian Family: Images and Essays published by Scribe Publications, Melbourne 1998, edited by Anna Epstein. The book comprises specially commissioned and carefully researched essays with accompanying artworks and illustrations from each participating institution.
Women's Suffrage... Banner: 'Monster Petition Project, Banner 5, Community and Public Sector Union', 2008... commemorative activities such as the creation of the Great Petition Sculpture by artists Susan Hewitt and Penelope Lee, work by artists Bindi Cole, Louise Bufardeci, and Fern Smith, and community activities involving Kavisha Mazzella, the Dallas Neighbourhood ...
2008 marked the centenary of the right for Victorian non-indigenous women to vote.
During 2008 the achievements of the tenacious indigenous and non-indigenous women who forged a path through history were celebrated through an array of commemorative activities.
How the right to vote was won…
In 1891 Victorian women took to the streets, knocking door to door, in cities, towns and across the countryside in the fight for the vote.
They gathered 30,000 signatures on a petition, which was made of pages glued to sewn swathes of calico. The completed petition measured 260m long, and came to be known as the Monster Petition. The Monster Petition is a remarkable document currently housed at the Public Records Office of Victoria.
The Monster Petition was met with continuing opposition from Parliament, which rejected a total of 19 bills from 1889. Victoria had to wait another 17 years until 1908 when the Adult Suffrage Bill was passed which allowed non-indigenous Victorian women to vote.
Universal suffrage for Indigenous men and women in Australia was achieved 57 years later, in 1965.
This story gives an overview of the Women’s Suffrage movement in Victoria including key participants Vida Goldstein and Miles Franklin, and the 1891 Monster Petition. It documents commemorative activities such as the creation of the Great Petition Sculpture by artists Susan Hewitt and Penelope Lee, work by artists Bindi Cole, Louise Bufardeci, and Fern Smith, and community activities involving Kavisha Mazzella, the Dallas Neighbourhood House, the Victorian Women Vote 1908 – 2008 banner project, and much more…
Further information can be found at the State Library of Victoria's Ergo site Women's Rights
Learn more about the petition and search for your family members on the Original Monster Petition site at the Parliament of Victoria.
Educational Resources can be found on the State Library of Victoria's 'Suffragettes in the Media' site.
Another Night... Coal Creek Community Park & Museum ...
Lighting fades away when a lamp is blown out, or when a switch is clicked off, but the history of lighting has left traces in Victorian cultural collections.
This story looks at items and images relating to the history of lighting in Victoria and considers the various lightscapes created by different types of lighting. This story is inspired by the book Black Kettle and Full Moon by Geoffrey Blainey.
After thousands of years of Aboriginal firelight, European households spent their evenings in dim smoky rooms huddled around a spluttering pool of light. Bright lighting was a luxury. As new energy sources and lighting technology became available nights became brighter, extending the day and changing the night time.