Such was life

Remembering the Armistice, 100 years on

Remembering the Armistice, 100 years on

November 9, 2018

Our stories, War:

Guns on the Western Front fell silent one hundred years ago, at 11am on 11 November 1918, bringing to an end what we remember as the First World War. 

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.

Banned books

Banned books

September 26, 2018

Arts & literature, Our stories:

Throughout history, when those in power have felt threatened by the ‘dangerous’ ideas contained in the pages of books, the offending books have been banned, stripped from shelves, and even burned. But censorship isn’t just a thing of the past. Take a look at prohibited and censored books, old and new.

Illustrated children’s books: Kay Nielsen (1886-1957)

Illustrated children’s books: Kay Nielsen (1886-1957)

September 10, 2018

Arts & literature, Our stories:

Kay Nielsen’s delicate illustrations combined the exquisite motifs of the Art Nouveau movement with oriental influences. The elaborate, decorative artworks bring brilliant colour tinged with a hint of eeriness to the pages of children’s fairy tales.

Beauty spots: from facial flaws to fashion statements

Beauty spots: from facial flaws to fashion statements

September 6, 2018

Social life & customs, Such was life, Theatre:

Under the eye or the corner of the mouth? Does the position of your beauty spot mean you are a flirt, engaged or just cheeky? Stars, pigs and horses; from the eighteenth century onward, the beauty spot has an alluring past.

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 breaking of the drought: silent movies and photography

The breaking of the drought: silent movies and photography

July 30, 2018

Arts & literature, Such was life:

The Library has digitised some wonderful photographs taken during the filming of the 1920 Australian silent movie, ‘The breaking of the drought.’ Melodrama, song, dance, water ballet, seduction, ruin and redemption; this movie has it all. And a happy ending too.

Australia’s golden age of cycling

Australia’s golden age of cycling

July 20, 2018

Exhibitions, Our stories, People & professions:

Cheering echoed throughout the streets of Sydney in November 1937 as some 60,000 people gathered along the last 80 kilometres of Hubert Opperman’s epic trans-continental ride. Once as famous as cricketer Don Bradman, endurance cyclist ‘Oppy’ is currently featured in the Changing face of Victoria exhibition. Discover objects from his career, loaned to us by Museums Victoria.

fairy The babes asleep in the wood

Early history of movable and pop-up books

July 3, 2018

Arts & literature, Our stories:

Pop-up books enthral readers for many reasons: their ingenuity, their beauty, and because they challenge the two-dimensional nature of printed books. Explore the range of paper engineering mechanisms that have been used in books for more than 700 years.

The dais in the dome

The dais in the dome

June 25, 2018

Our stories, Such was life:

Once upon a time a staff member sat in the dais in the La Trobe Reading Room, watching over any chattering public. I asked two long term SLV librarians how this used to work.