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Glass Stereograph Negative - Federation Celebrations, Citizen's Arch, by G.H. Myers, Melbourne, Victoria, 1901 Image Reg. No: MM 057315

Summary:
Glass negative stereograph showing the Citizen's Arch spanning Bourke Street. It is part of the G. H. Myers Collection which consists of 73 photographs taken by Godfrey Henry Myers, an electrician and amateur photographer, in Melbourne during May 1901. 72 of these photographs depict preparations for the celebrations that surrounded Federation; all but one are glass stereographs. This collection represents Myers' one venture into commercial photography. It is significant for its images of the crowds, which do not feature so prominently in commercial photographs. The remaining photograph is a family portrait.

The opening of the Australian Parliament on May 9 1901 was an occasion for great celebrations in Melbourne. Ten days of festivities (from 6-16 May) were planned to mark the Federation of the new nation and honour the Royal visitors, the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York. The city was transformed with decorations - flags, bunting, colourful lights and festive arches - and a series of public events were held, including a military tattoo and several street parades. Unprecedented numbers of people arrived in Melbourne from the rest of Victoria and throughout Australia to take part in the celebrations.
Description Of Content:
The Citizen's Arch spanning Bourke Street, Melbourne was erected for the Federation celebrations in 1901. This arch was raised by public subscription. Immensely proud of what they had achieved in the short time since their founding in 1834, the people of Victoria were determined not to leave the architectural commemorations just to Government and official authorities. The City Council recommended that everyone 'keep to the right' when walking in the street. As in the Home Country from which they are about to gain their independence, the traffic kept to the left. It was safer to walk against the flow of vehicular traffic which could see and judge the movement of the foot traffic. But as can be seen, the people are in fact keeping to the left for that is how they walked on the footpaths. Although usually serviced solely by cable tram, it appears that for the Federation celebrations horse drawn trams augmented or replaced the cable trams in Bourke Street.
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Mr Geoffrey Walker, 2001
Discipline: Technology

More information

Tagged with: australian federation 1901, celebrations, commemorative arches, royal visits, royalty
Themes this item is part of: Public Life & Institutions Collection, G.H. Myers Collection
Primary Classification: PUBLIC EVENTS
Secondary Classification: Federation
Tertiary Classification: images (to be classified)
Original Caption: The Citizen's Arch
Format: Glass Stereograph Negative: Black & White
Place & Date Depicted: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1901
Photographer: Godfrey Myers, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1901
Bibliography:
  1. [Manuscript] Walker, Geoffrey. A City of Enchanted Palaces. The Federation Celebrations in Melbourne. May 1901. (unpublished).

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