Ask a librarian

Mapping the past with Victoria’s historical plans

Mapping the past with Victoria’s historical plans

April 4, 2023

Ask a librarian, Collection spotlights, Our stories, Victorian history:

The Historical Maps and Plans Collection is a boon for researchers, containing everything from descriptions of what the landscape was like when Europeans arrived, to the locations of early buildings and houses, pastoral runs, and even shipwrecks.

Dome to Catacomb

Dome to Catacomb

March 24, 2023

Ask a librarian, Victorian history:

Step behind-the-scenes as we tour the Library from Dome to Catacomb. We invite you to explore the layers of history that make up the Library. 

Paris is always a good idea

Paris is always a good idea

March 17, 2023

Ask a librarian, Cities & towns, Photography, Reference desk:

Read about the time Paris lost itself in Melbourne. Good thing we found it and gave it back to the world! Here’s the fascinating story of a collection that everyone believed to be lost.

The treasure that is Trove: why reference librarians love it

The treasure that is Trove: why reference librarians love it

March 15, 2023

Ask a librarian, Reference desk, Research tips:

On any given day here at State Library Victoria you may hear librarians wax lyrical about the wonders of Trove. Yet for many library users it can be a bit of a mystery. So what is Trove, how do librarians at State Library Victoria use it and why should you use it, too? (Hint: it’s free!) 

Jane Austen – new acquisitions

Jane Austen – new acquisitions

March 8, 2023

Ask a librarian, Collection spotlights:

To celebrate International Women’s Day, we took a look at a recent acquisition to our collection – a first edition copy of Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey and Persuasion in a four-volume set.

Pro abortion march, May 1979, 1979. Photo by Lyn McLeavy. This work is in copyright; H2012.7/6

Online Collection Spotlight: Women’s Studies Archive

March 6, 2023

Ask a librarian, Collection spotlights:

Where can I find first-hand accounts of bush nurses working during the 1956 Murray River floods? Who was the first lesbian rights organisation in the US and where can I find their newsletter? And does anyone have a good recipe for sheeps’ head pie anymore? If any of these questions have sparked your interest, the Women’s Studies Archive has got you covered!

Pram Factory theatre posters and the Australian Performance Group

Pram Factory theatre posters and the Australian Performance Group

March 5, 2023

Ask a librarian, Collection spotlights, Victorian history:

The Pictures collection at State Library Victoria contains many gems such as a posters collection of over 6,000 items, including 237 posters from Melbourne’s legendary Pram Factory.

Picnic fun

Picnic fun

February 15, 2023

Ask a librarian, Our stories:

Victorians of yesteryear loved their picnics: despite heavy clothing, horse-drawn transport and no refrigeration, they made treks to the bush to enjoy food and recreation. Enjoy these picnic images from our pictures collections.

Online Collection Spotlight: Australian Newspapers Collection (1831-2000)

Online Collection Spotlight: Australian Newspapers Collection (1831-2000)

February 10, 2023

Ask a librarian, Collection spotlights:

Australian Newspapers Collection (1831-2000) database has images of each page of the Age and the Sydney Morning Herald from when they were first published right up to the end of 2000.

1866 in 3D: the isometrical plan of Melbourne & suburbs

1866 in 3D: the isometrical plan of Melbourne & suburbs

February 6, 2023

Ask a librarian, Collection spotlights, Victorian history:

Sometimes called ‘bird’s eye view’ maps, isometric maps depict a view ‘from above’. This plan, produced in 1866, shows a remarkable point-in-time layout of Melbourne streets, the Yarra, Port Phillip Bay, and parts of Collingwood and East Melbourne. A closer examination reveals some of the fledging city’s most important social, economic and civic locations and buildings, as well as parks and reserves, including many which remain today.