Articles by: Sarah Matthews

Time travelling with Sands & McDougall

Time travelling with Sands & McDougall

June 16, 2020

Buildings & streets, People & professions, Such was life:

Bell hangers and nightmen, leech merchants and lightermen; these are just some of the nineteenth century characters you may find lurking within the pages of a Sands & McDougall directory.

The day the Sea Fury came to visit

The day the Sea Fury came to visit

May 18, 2020

Ask a librarian, Our stories:

It’s not every day that you see an aeroplane parked outside the Library, but this was the sight that greeted Victorians when they came to visit in 1953.

On the ‘shick’ in Little Lon

On the ‘shick’ in Little Lon

April 16, 2020

Buildings & streets, Social life & customs, Such was life:

Of all the slums in inner Melbourne, ‘Little Lon’, was the most notorious. But there was more to the precinct than met the eye…

The Spare Corner Club

The Spare Corner Club

May 17, 2019

People & professions, Social life & customs, Such was life:

It was a cool summer’s day in 1940 when around fifty members of the Spare Corner Club met in the Fitzroy Gardens for lunch…

Elizabeth Batman's doll

Elizabeth Batman’s doll

March 20, 2019

Social life & customs, Such was life:

Elizabeth Batman’s doll is a fascinating relic from the earliest days of Melbourne.

The ancient art of bellringing

The ancient art of bellringing

October 1, 2018

Social life & customs, Such was life:

The ancient art of bellringing is harder than it looks. Bellringers require confidence and stamina, not to mention an excellent memory.

Are you being served?

Are you being served?

August 8, 2018

Such was life:

Step back in time to the old-fashioned servo, where consumer choice was de rigueur, and service was king.

The old tin shed

The old tin shed

January 25, 2018

Buildings & streets, Such was life:

‘The Elizabeth Street blot’, ‘unsightly’, ‘deplorable’, ‘an ancient eyesore’. Few buildings in our city’s history excited as much controversy as ‘the old tin shed’.

Convict tattoos

Convict tattoos

October 18, 2017

Such was life:

What do the following things have in common: candlesticks, beehives, cock fights, drinking glasses, swans, flowerpots, crucifixes, stags, comets, and roses? Give up? They’re all convict tattoos.

The 1967 referendum

The 1967 referendum

May 26, 2017

Such was life:

On 27 May 1967, Australians voted in record numbers to alter two sections of the Constitution so it no longer discriminated against Aboriginal people. The landslide ‘yes’ vote was seen as a watershed moment in Australian political history.