Welcome to the Federation of Australian Historical Societies 

The Federation of Australian Historical Societies is supported through funding from the Australian Government’s Community Heritage and Icons Grants program via the ACT Government

No. 175, 17th March 2018
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Campaign to save the Federation of Australian Historical Societies Successful
Call for Papers: FAHS Newsletter
Featured Historical Society - Kununurra Historical Society
RHSV Collection on eHive
FAHS Report - Making Collections Accessible
History Documented by Brunswick Valley Historical Society, NSW
A Pint of History, Hobart
History West Talk, RWAHS 
Seminar, Women in History, Sydney
Margaret Medcalf Award: Call for Nominations
Funding for Maritime Heritage
Book Launch, Echuca Historical Society, Victoria
Family History Course, WA
Oral History Workshop, SA/NT Branch
Digital Access to Collections Workshop, Cairns
Volunteer Museum Grant Program, NSW
Heritage Funding, Heritage Near Me, NSW
State Library of Queensland 2018 Research Fellowships
Campaign to save the FAHS successful

Congratulations to all our supporters!

Due to your letters, email and petitions, Minister Frydenberg has found a way to provide $80,000 to the Federation of Australian Historical Societies and will be writing soon.

It is not clear at this stage whether this amount is provided for one year or continuous over three years. We will keep you informed.

Hold off on the letters and emails until further updates

Follow us on our Facebook page for updates
Call for Papers: FAHS Newsletter

Call for Papers for the June 2018 issue of the Federation of Australian Historical Societies’ Newsletter
Theme: Diversity
Submission Date: Monday 30th April 2018
Issue No. 45 of the FAHS newsletter recognises and celebrates diversity within the community history sector. Historical Societies make a specific contribution to this expression by working with, and as part of, local community. At the same time there is a blossoming of cultural expression among indigenous groups, LBTQI and a range of ethnic groups representing diverse community and history. This has yet to extend to being an integral part of local histories and community heritage.
The FAHS is seeking papers on new and traditional approaches to collection practices, exhibition, research, public programs and events that reflect diverse community and history. Papers are invited on methods and representations of the local culture and areas of special interest, whether these are geographically, cultural, or ethnically based. These may include:
  • Ways that organisations recognise and celebrate diversity and multiplicity
  • Inclusive and focused historical interpretations/ interpretative activities
  • Collection and interpretation of collections
  • New practices involving a range of community expressions
  • Variety of representations in studying Australian history and genealogy
Articles that relate more generally to matters of local history and community heritage are also welcome.
Articles are invited of up to 800 words, The FAHS newsletter is distributed via our contact list, on the FAHS website and on ISSUU. The last newsletter No. 44 on the theme of Collaboration and Participation can be viewed here
Please send expressions of interest to the editor Dr Bernadette Flynn,
Featured Historical Society - Kununurra Historical Society
Kununurra Historical Society (KHS) is a volunteer not-for-profit running an archive, gallery, library and museum to showchase their research.

The society was inaugurated in 1986 and has been actively collecting the local regional history for over 30 years. 
The Kununurra Historical Society collects, preserves and exhibits the region's history with a focus on the Ord Irrigation Project, the Ord-Victoria Rivers region over and along the NT-WA border (about 30kns away) and the Kimberley region in general. A growing collection of objects from as old as 1,800 million years ago are stored in a purpose-built archive and museum facility. Other items in the collection are books, journals, manuscripts, newspapers and pamphlets, as well as audio-visual collections . There are items of local, state and national significance with other items of rarity not listed in any other collection in Australia.  Examples include the Ray Hames 1943 diary and photographs and the 1st survey for what became the National Development Ord River Project.

The President, Andrew Barker has developed an impressive range of digital exhibition outlets. When Andrew started in 2006 there was a faulty PC and a few floppy discs in a cupboard. Since that time he has developed comprehensive digital archives of around 3 Terrabytes, which are always a work in progress and currently only available for researchers and members to view at the museum.  A grant from the Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley and other donors in 2010 saw over 2500 photographs digitised and documented by dedicated KHS volunteers for A Photographic Journey on the Ord. There have been many more digitised since then and others collected online are screened on large monitors in the museum along with projected date-sorted slideshows, now with over 17,000 images. 

Because of the transient nature of Kununurra's population, the society is actively seeking archival material in the way of photographs, documents, books or other objects from past residents. Items are currently accessible via the Kununurra Museum YouTube Channel, Twitter #KimberleyHistory, a Flickr site and Facebook page.  Over 2,500 photographs and documents have been uploaded to Flickr with full metadata and then added to the Trove Picture Australia Group on Flickr, which then makes them accessible on Trove. This level of accessibility has enabled others to add valuable information to the historical records,  as demonstrated by the public responses on many of the Flickr photographs. 

Images l to r: Kununurra Museum;  images on Flickr: The Henry Hall Operation Ord Noah Collection (1971-72) and Aboriginal kids at Kalumburu Mission (1963, Mary Punchi Clement on the left). 
The valuable work undertaken by the Kununurra Historical Society in collecting, documenting, digitising, conserving and preserving the region's history has been recognised by a Royal WA Historical Society award for Historical Society of the Year (2016). KHS has around 125 members, most being spread around Australia. About 20 members are local, with around 10 of these regularly attending monthly meetings.

Currently the work on the archive and opening the Kununurra Museum is largely managed by the President, who opens the museum 5 days a week at present and has a full time commitment to developing the archives and managing the collections. The society is actively seeking new members and volunteers to avoid a crisis situation, to assist in keeping the museum open and to successfully continue its operations. 

In spite of these challenges the society is developing new research and is currently preparing a new collection for Flickr, the Jim Gooderson Collection. This collections shows photographs from a WA survey crew in the Ord in 1961, and a tidal energy survey of the Kimberley coast from Derby to Wyndham and the Cambridge Gulf in 1963. This is accompanied by a paper on Tidal Power in the Kimberley by the engineer/designer of the Ord River Diversion Dam, John Lewis. 
Events for 2018 include the Wirraway Challenge Day at the Kununurra Museum on March 20th  to commemorate the forced landing of RAAF 12 Squadron CAC Wirraway A20-62 on coastline near the WA-NT border in 1942. Another event on Saturday May 5th is the launch of Kununurra Museum's Remembering Them. This project funded by Lottery West and organised by the WA Museum & the Royal WA Historical Society details the return of Neal Durack from the 10th Light Horse in 1918 to survey and mark out the Mount Barnett to Wyndham Stock Route, then as manager of Auvergne Station for Connor Dohery & Durack, before drowning in the Ord River at Ivanhoe in 1920. The Wyndham Museum hold their Remembering Them opening on the following day. 

Museum: 72 Coolibah Drive, Kununurra, Monday to Friday 12.30-5.30pm (dependent on season and volunteer availability).
Phone: (08) 9169 3331

Sources: The Kununurra Historical Society website and interview with KHS President Andrew Barker
RHSV Collection on eHive

In 2017 the collection of the Royal Historical Society of Victoria moved to eHive with around 33,000 records from the collections uploaded, including manuscripts, library, vertical file and Pioneer Register. At present the the index of the Victorian Historical Journal is being transferred. Migrating records from the old databases is a gradual process, but the ultimate aim is for researchers to be able to cover all collections with one search.
Cataloguing in the cloud means that every computer can be a cataloguing computer and this has unlocked a great deal of processing power and volunteer capacity. It has helped with two very large book donations that came in last year allowing much more retrospective record maintenance, including error corrections and consolidation of multi part works into single records. The society has successfully attracted volunteers with cataloguing skills because they can now be provided with experience on an up to date system and can see their work on Trove, the national database.
Records are able to be harvested to Trove easily and updates to records appear on Trove within two days. Since this happened  a steady increase in the number of enquiries has been noted and a difference in the nature of enquiries. A few enquiries asking 'Do you have anything about … ?', are still received but now that more people have access to the records on eHive enquiries are more precise – people are able to identify particular items they’d like to review or have copied. This is a great time saver for the society and for its users.
The RSHV website is undergoing a redevelopment at present, and part of the plan includes using eHive as the ‘back end’ to a custom designed advanced search screen as well as customised results display and reports.

Source: Christine Worthington, Collections manager and volunteer coordinator, Royal Historical Society of Victoria
FAHS Report - Making Collections Accessible
The FAHS has developed a report on digital collections and access - Making Collection Accessible. Whether you are using paper based records or have a partner agreement with Trove, get help with making your collections more accessible and planning for digital futures.

The report discusses the stages involved in developing a collection – from paper based catalogues to fully discoverable digital records and offers advice on appropriate software.

Unlock the potential of your collection through increased digital presence, outreach and collaboration.

See the full report:
History Documented by Brunswick Valley Historical Society, NSW
New documentary series Mullumbimby’s Magic – the Culture of the 70s – 80s has been commissioned by Brunswick Valley Historical Society.

Mullumbimby’s Magic – the Culture of the 70s – 80s  produced by Sharon Shostak preserves the region’s alternate culture stories. Series one Health & Wellbeing was released in November 2017, Activism & Politics  is planned for 2018 and The Arts to follow.
Brunswick Valley Historical Society have also put their support behind the Nightcap Monuments Project along with the Mullumbimby Museum and Southern Cross University. 

The Nightcap Monuments Project is aiming to raise funds for some permanent regional monuments to the historic environmental protests and their environmental legacy. The project seeks to gather and consolidate much of the fragmented historical information, surviving images and data surrounding the historic protest period.
A Pint of History, Hobart
History is full of drinking. Be it alcoholic or non-, made from fruit, grain, spuds or sugar. In sorrow or celebration, glasses have been raised, from battlefields to children's parties.

A Pint of History is continuing the tradition, bringing tales of old to a pub near you. A different topic every month, with some of Hobart's leading historians guiding you through the quirky, entertaining and downright confusing of the past.

We meet at Shambles Brewery, where you'll find great pints, delicious food and fascinating conversations. Come and grab a bite to eat, and order a pint of history on the side!

Next event: A Pint of History - Nuts, Bolts and Burnouts

Thu. 19 April 2018 6:45 pm – 8:15 pm 
Shambles Brewery, 222 Elizabeth Street, Hobart, TAS 7000
History West Talk, RWAHS 

Image: Rare survivor - a proof copy of the £1 note issued to meet an 1834 emergency 

Dr Steve Errington will present a paper on Money troubles at Swan River 1829-37In this talk Steve looks at how the early settlers at the Swan River Colony managed for money in their everyday transactions. 

Where: Stirling House, Royal WA Historical Society  
When: Wednesday 21 March at 6pm. Refreshments available from 5.30pm; Bookshop open until 6pm.  
Seminar, Women in History, Sydney
RAHS/SAG Seminar
Women in History

April 11 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
$50 - $65

Join Carol Liston, Christine Yeats, Noeline Kyle and Joy Hughes as they explore topics from women’s history and techniques for researching women in history. 
The Royal Historical Society of Australia and the Society of Australian Genealogists are co-hosting the Women in History seminar 

This seminar will be held at Richmond Villa, 120 Kent Street, Sydney. Richmond Villa is at the northern end of Kent St near the approaches to the Harbour Bridge. Wynyard Station (train and bus) is a 10 minute walk and ferries are 15 minutes away at Circular Quay. There is some metered street parking but public transport is recommended.

For further information and to purchase tickets
Margaret Medcalf Award: Call for Nominations

Submit a nomination for the Margaret Medcalf Award, WA

Since 2003, 16 researchers and historians, creating works on various Western Australian subjects, have won the Margaret Medcalf Award. Recognizing excellence in referencing and research using State Archives held by the State Records Office of Western Australia (SRO), the award honours Miss Margaret Medcalf OAM, Western Australia’s second State Archivist, for her valuable contribution to the development of archives in Western Australia. 

Image: Miss Margaret Medcalf OAM, Western Australia’s second State Archivist
Any work completed or published in 2017 is eligible to be submitted for nomination, and anyone, including the author of the work, may submit a nomination. Unlike book awards, nominated works need not be published, and may include student dissertations and theses. They may be fiction or non-fiction, and be presented in any media.
The winner receives a cash prize of $1000, or shares this prize if there is more than one winner. Works nominated must demonstrate accurate referencing and use of State archives.

For further details including more information about the judging criteria for the Award, see or contact Gerard Foley at the SRO by email or by phone on (08) 9427 3641.
Funding for Maritime Heritage

Credit: Sailing off Coal Point, c.1935. Photographer unknown. Image: Lake Macquarie Community Heritage Photography collection

Administered by the Australian National Maritime Museum, the Maritime Museums of Australia Project Support Scheme offers funding to help not-for-profit organisations preserve and display objects of national and historical maritime significance.

Grants of up to $15,000 are available for projects in several categories which include collection management, conservation and presentation and education and public programs.

The scheme also supports staff or volunteers from remote or regional organisations learn specific skills to care for and manage maritime collections.

Previous recipients include Busselton Historical Society, Richmond River Historical Society Inc. Echuca Historical Society, Paynesville Maritime Museum

Applications close 31 March 2018.
Further information:
Book Launch, Echuca Historical Society, Victoria
Echuca Historical Society have published a new book Celebrating Echuca.

Celebrating Echuc
a is a compilation of photographs from the society’s historical collection and photographs taken recently featuring the town as seen by the locals. 

From the paddlesteamers, to Hopwood’s obelisk, buildings and streetscapes of interest to both locals and visitors, this is a coloured pictorial record of Echuca, comprising 48 pages.
Available at Echuca Historical Society Museum, Port of Echuca Discovery Centre, Echuca Paddlesteamers, Murray River Paddlesteamers, Collins Books, Echuca and Read Heller Book Shop. 

Cost $20 (plus $5 for postage via email order to
Family History Course, WA
Western Australian Genealogical Society 

Getting started with your family history

When: 07 Apr 2018 10:00am - 12:00pm
Where: WAGS Unit 4 - Bayswater
This introductory course provides you with all the information to get started, from how to access birth, death and marriage records, to finding relevant records.

Includes instructions on how to record your findings along with some useful websites to further your research.

Free - Members, $10 - Non-members
Enquiries email or phone 08 9271 4311 during library hours
Oral History Workshop, SA/NT Branch

The Oral History Association of Australia (SA/NT branch) are running an introductory oral history workshop on Tuesday 10 April.
  • How to do an oral history interview.
  • Learn how to plan and record professional interviews.
  • Workshops introduce participants to the practice and methods of doing an oral history interview and provide equipment training on digital recorders.

Date: Tuesday, 10 April 2018
Time: 10am – 3.30pm
Venue:  Anne and Basil Hetzel lecture theatre, Institute Building, State Library of South Australia, cnr Kintore Ave and North Terrace, Adelaide.
Cost: $75 per person per day or $50 for concession*/pension/student/OHA member.  

Bookings and further information  
Digital Access to Collections Workshop, Cairns
You’re invited to the Cairns Digital Access to Collections Workshop!

Dates: Wednesday 2nd to Thursday 3rd May 2018
Time: 10am to 5pm each day
Location: Stratford Library Meeting Room, 11 Kamerunga Road, Stratford QLD 4870
This two-day workshop gives attendees the opportunity to participate in training focused on digitisation and the provision of digital access of collections, Q&A’s with leading technology providers and the chance to network with other GLAM organisations.

Who should attend? Staff and volunteers from small- to medium-sized non-metropolitan collecting organisations, including galleries, libraries, archives, museums, indigenous keeping places, sporting clubs, returned services clubs and historical societies.

The workshops will provide information, training and advice for organisations on their way to providing digital access to their collections.

Funding is available to organisations through grants that can support participation at the workshop and/or assist with setting your organisation up for digitising collections. More information about the grants can be found at 

Register to attend here
More information on the workshop here.
Volunteer Museum Grant Program, NSW
Museums & Galleries NSW are accepting applications for three grants from the Volunteer Museum Grant Program.

These grants provide assistance to volunteer community museums and Aboriginal Keeping Places in NSW
The Volunteer Museum Grants are:
Small grants – up to $2,000 for short-term collection-based projects
Skills development grants – up to $4,000 for the development and delivery of skill development training and networking events
Leg up grants  – matched funding of $50 – $500 for volunteers to attend or host development activities in NSW

Find out more at Museums & Galleries NSW
Heritage Funding, Heritage Near Me, NSW
A new round of grants under the NSW Government’s Heritage Near Me program is open

Three new funding opportunities
The Heritage Near Me incentives program runs from 2016 to 2019. There is $16 million available in funding over the life of the program

The three grant stream opportunities are: Heritage Activation Grants, Local Heritage Strategic Projects Grants and Heritage Green Energy Grants. 

Heritage Activation Grants: The Heritage Activation Grants support projects that actively increase community interaction and participation with local heritage. Items must be publicly accessible on a regular basis.

The Local Heritage Grants assist in developing community priorities for local heritage by providing support for collaborative solutions through community-based projects and technical expertise.

The Heritage Green Energy Grants support projects that increase the energy efficiency of local heritage items while conserving their heritage values. This funding program complements the OEH Energy Saver program. All applicants must have completed a business audit or training through the OEH Energy Efficient Business program. The Heritage Green Energy Grant assists in implementing the measures identified in the business audit or training.

Read the Heritage Near Me brochure
State Library of Queensland 2018 Research Fellowships
$100,000 to uncover Queensland's stories

State Library of Queensland is calling for applications for its annual research fellowships, worth up to $20,000 each, which encourage new perspectives on the state’s history. 
Applications are now open nationally for the State Library of Queensland's 2018 research fellowships, with seven research opportunities available worth up to $20,000 each. The State Library invites applicants to imaginatively respond to our unique collections and resources including manuscripts, maps, music, newspapers, oral histories and rare printed material. Researchers and creatives from all backgrounds and disciplines are encouraged to apply.

Researchers and content creators from all backgrounds and disciplines are encouraged to apply.  

Applications close Wednesday 21 March.
Further information
The FAHS e-Bulletin, No. 175,
17th March 2018
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