This collection encompasses a diverse range of material in the fields of animal husbandry, agriculture, economic botany, food technology and textile technology.
The most significant element of the collection relates to agricultural equipment manufacturer and innovator HV McKay. The history of this agricultural enterprise spans from its inception in the 1880s to the present day and forms one of the largest industrial collections in Australia. It provides a window on Australian innovation, agriculture, manufacture, working lives and community life.
The collections take on new meaning with passing time. The large collection of wax models of fruit and vegetables, originally developed for 19th century international exhibitions, now plays a vital role in contributing to our understanding of contemporary issues of biodiversity.
- Models of agricultural equipment commissioned by director Frederick McCoy in the 1860s.
- Stump jump plough.
- Mccook windmill models and Trade Literature Collection.
- Dethridge irrigation meter.
- Humble and Nicholson portable steam engine.
- Alston windmill.
- Cowley steam traction engine.
- Ferguson TEA-20 tractor.
- Quinlivan 4-wheel-drive traction engine model.
- HV McKay Collection: the original McKay farm smithy, Sunshine tractor, 1906 stripper harvester, HST header harvester, Sunshine auto header, equipment models, business archives, trade publications, films and photographs.
- Women on Farms Gathering Collection.
- Trade literature of agricultural equipment and manufacturers, including over 5000 trade literature items and 3500 advertisements.
- Extensive collection of economic botany samples, much of it originally displayed at 19th century international exhibitions; includes items prepared by government botanist Ferdinand von Mueller in the 1860s.
- More than 1900 wax fruit models with sketch books and moulds.
- Jack Chisholm Fencing Collection.
- May Vale painted timber sections.
- Pacific Hydro wind turbine.