Local History

SEPP_0049 Loading fruit for market, Kinglake (Shire of Eltham Pioneers Photograph collection)
Loading fruit for market, Kinglake (Shire of Eltham Pioneer Photograph collection)

Explore the rich tapestry of local history within Banyule, Nillumbik and Whittlesea

Local History collections are held at Ivanhoe, Diamond Valley, Eltham and Mill Park Libraries.
Search the catalogue for your subject of interest. Use of the local history collection is available after a consultation with a staff member for access. Items are made available on the understanding that the material is handled carefully and appreciating that some items may be original or irreplaceable. Items in the local history collection are not for loan. There will be a circulating copy for more recently published material.

Donations of material to the collection, including photographs are welcome.

Explore Wikinorthia : documenting life in Melbourne's north and add your story.

Search our Image collection of historic and contemporary images and more.

These include a number of collections including:
• A collection in partnership with Heidelberg Historical Society covering the period 1840s to 1960s. Themes covered include: Places, Buildings and Events.
• The Diamond Valley Local History Digitisation Project includes a range of images that document life in the Diamond Valley in the 1970s and 1980s, and also the history of the Diamond Valley Library.
• Colour photographs taken by Kevin Paterson of the Nillumbik Historical Society. Pictures date from the 1960s to the early 1980s, and feature old buildings, parks and landscapes, floods, and various community activities, such as an Army display at Simpson Barracks. There are also rare images of construction taking place, including the “Binni Shell” Community Centre at Diamond Creek, since demolished, and the syphon across the Plenty River from the Maroondah aqueduct, at the time the replacement pipes were being installed. They contain colour images of activities in the Shire of Diamond Valley, and neighbouring districts in the early 1980s. Subjects include the Diamond Creek Town Fair; the construction of housing estates, roads, community facilities, Greensborough Shopping Centre; street scenes, comparing old and new; parks; floods; local residents; and some old pictures of earlier times.
• Greensborough Shopping Centre under construction in 1978.
• Diamond Valley library activities and displays during the late 1970s and early 1980s.
• Ian Trupp collection : a small collection of black and white photographs from the 1970s, with images of Apollo Parkways land sales, various local scenes and activities.
• A collection in partnership with Nillumbik Historical Society of forty photographs covering the period 1850s to 1908.
• The Shire of Eltham Pioneers Photograph collection, in its hundreds was collected by the former Shire of Eltham in 1970/71 in preparation for the publication “Pioneers & Painters: one hundred years of Eltham and its Shire” by Alan Marshall published in 1971 (and reissued in 1979) and published by the Shire. This book remains a significant local history of the area.
• Whittlesea Bicentennial Photograph Collection and Preserving the Past collection include over 600 images representing the following themes: Historic views, Local events, Working life, Portraits of residents, Mayors and Council, Churches and Post-war immigration.

Collections

Ivanhoe Local History collection

The Ivanhoe Local History Collection focuses on the history of that part of the present City of Banyule that fell within the former City of Heidelberg prior to 1964. It covers the time-span from traditional Aboriginal occupation and early European settlement through to the early twenty-first century. The collection of approximately 350 items includes a range of material including published books, documents, pamphlets, newspapers and newsletters and municipal records.
Main themes represented in the collection include:
• Early settlers.
• Local institutions and organisations — schools, hospitals, churches, sports clubs (particularly golf).
• Municipal Council activities.
• Urban development and housing, including Walter Burley Griffin estates and houses.
• Melbourne Olympics 1956, and Olympic Village.
• Art — the Heidelberg School.
• Heritage - built and landscape.
• Social and urban planning issues, including the provision of services.
• Natural environment - flora and fauna, waterways.
• The development of library services.
• Aboriginal heritage (to a limited extent).

Diamond Valley Local History collection

The main focus of the Collection is the geographic area covered by the former Shire of Diamond Valley, including Diamond Creek, Greensborough, Watsonia, Yarrambat, and parts of Bundoora. It includes a considerable amount of material relevant to the present City of Banyule and Shire of Nillumbik. It covers the time-span from traditional Aboriginal occupation and early European settlement through to the early twenty-first century. The Collection of approximately 300 items includes a range of printed materials including the Diamond Valley Leader from 1964.
Main themes represented in the collection include:
• Early settlers, development of local townships and communities
• Local institutions and organisations — schools, hospitals, churches, sports clubs
• Urban development and housing, including the development and construction of shopping centre and other community facilities.
• Social and urban planning issues, including the provision of services.
Natural environment — flora and fauna, waterways.
The development of library services.
Local writers
Diamond Valley Art Collection
Aboriginal heritage

Eltham Local History collection

The main focus of the collection is the Shire of Nillumbik, but it is primarily on the area covered by the former Shire of Eltham, including Kinglake and part of the present City of Banyule. The collection covers the time-span from traditional Aboriginal occupation and early European settlement, through to the early twenty-first century. The collection of approximately 300 items includes a range of print materials, and also the literature of author and local resident Alan Marshall.
Main themes represented in the collection:
• Early settlers, development of local townships and communities.
• Gold mining.
• Local institutions and organisations - — schools, churches, sports clubs etc.
• Eltham lifestyle, mud brick building.
• Natural environment - — flora and fauna, waterways.
• Cultural heritage.
• Alan Marshall.
• Art, Montsalvat.
• Library services.
• Municipal planning.

Mill Park (J W Payne) Local History collection

The collection was founded by the Whittlesea Historical Society in 1983 when copies of original documents were donated to the library.
The Community Portrait collection includes documents, maps, plans, photographs, portraits, certificates relating to the the former Shire and City of Whittlesea Council, its residents and places including local churches, properties, transport and oral histories.
Main Themes Represented in the Collection:
• Early farming communities in scattered settlements and townships
• Early/prominent local families.
• Establishment and maintenance of Yan Yean water supply system.
• Early institutions, including schools, Janefield Colony.
• The development of library services.
• Municipal Council activities.
• Urban development, especially Lalor co-operative settlement, and later housing estates.
• Multicultural communities, including the early German community at Westgarthtown
• Planning issues of recent and current urban development, including impact on environment, and the provision of services.
• Natural environment - flora and fauna, soil.
• Art, local artists.
• Sport

 

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