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Working Life & Trades Collection
Image: Planes - Jack, Trying, Grooving, Tongueing and Moulding, Yarra Punt Builder
Source: Museum Victoria
This collection aims to document and preserve the history of Victorian workers, and to record their impact on and contribution to Australian society.
Focussing on the post-European settlement period to the present, it aims to reflect the experiences and actions of individuals and groups of workers in different historical, personal, social, economic and cultural settings. It also aims to document the personal and unique renderings of workers' experiences and actions.
Much of the collection documents 'case studies' of working life in Victoria and Australia. These offer insight into a particular type of workplace and work, with some emphasis on workers' voices, while the wider collection represents a variety of working-life skills, experiences and cultures.
The strengths of the collection lie in its coverage of early to mid-20th century factory work, small businesses and trades and the trade union movement. It focuses on work practices in more formal work environments such as factories, commercial workshops and the traditional apprentice-based trades, but is complemented by other collections of less formal workplace objects, such as the home work and handicrafts area in the Domestic and Community Life Collection.
Trades relating to metalworking and precision engineering, especially those requiring the extensive use of machine tools and power tools, are covered under the Engineering Collection rather than in Trades.
- Barfoot Bootmaking Collection: 211 items from a former surgical bootmaker's business.
- Bruhn Collection: 985 items from a father and son woodturning shop operated in Carlton and later South Melbourne, 1920s-1980s.
- Grenoble Gloves Collection: 454 items from a Melbourne glove factory started in 1944.
- McInnes Delicatessen and Butcher's Shop: 106 items from the East Malvern shop, which operated from 1933 to the 1970s.
- Newmarket Saleyards Collection: 27 items from former livestock saleyards.
- Pigment Manufacturers of Australia (PMA): 135 items from a major paint manufacturing plant at Laverton, 1960s-1990s.
- Sam Brown Bootmaker's Collection: 297 items from a former bootmaker's shop in Albert Park, c. 1930s-1980s.
- Simpson's Gloves Collection: 1491 items from the former Simpson's Glove Factory which operated in Victoria Street, Richmond, from 1924 until 1988.
- Victorian Institute for the Blind Collection: 107 items from former RVIB workshops.
- Artworks, including Ambrose Dyson, David Armfield and Aileen Brown, 1950s-1980s.
- 'Stick Together' radio program oral history collection, 1970s-1980s.
- Contemporary occupational health and safety material, 1990s.
- Stonemason's tools and early bootmaking machinery.
See The Working Life Collection, and an essay on this collection from A Museum for the People: A history of Museum Victoria and its predecessor institutions 1854-2000.
Items per page: 10 50 (showing 1 - 10) 4084 items
Photograph of the inside of the smithy where reportedly the first Sunshine harvester was manufactured in 1884 at Drummartin by Hugh Victor McKay. The smithy was erected at the front of ...Images: 1
Copy of a black and white negative of returned soldiers at Sunshine Harvester Works. Part of the H.V. McKay Old Archive. Documents include personal correspondence, agreements, contrac ...Images: 1
Photograph of overseas visitors in front of HV McKay's smithy which was located at the front of the Sunshine factory. Standing third from left is Abby Betts and 5th from left Bert Ustic ...Images: 1
Photograph showing Sunshine Pickup Balers being assembled in the factory. This image is part of a collection of photographs, moving film, artefacts, documents and trade literature rel ...Images: 1
Postcard for community event to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the gaining of the Eight Hour Day issued 21 April 2006. The card features a photograph taken by Ponch Hawkes titled 'L ...Images: 2
Postcard issued by Melbourne Workers Theatre for 'We Built This City', a theatre performance held at Scienceworks between 26 April and 6 May 2006. The play was organised by Donna Jackso ...Images: 2
Postcard for a community event celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Eight Hour Day. It features a photograph taken by Ponch Hawkes titled 'The Waiters Race'. The event was organised ...Images: 2
Black and white photograph of the Operative Bricklayers Society's Eight Hour Day delegates in front of a union banner circa 1920s. This image was reproduced from an original held by Vic ...Images: 1
Colour postcard depicting a procession on Bourke Street, Melbourne during Eight Hour Day celebrations. Action taken by stonemasons on 21 April 1856 led to the establishment of the Eigh ...Images: 1
Mounted photograph of strikers at the Amalgamated Workers Association (AWA) strike camp in Queensland. The photograph was taken during strikes held by Queensland's sugar workers between ...Images: 2