Podcast of Dr Gary Presland’s launch of The Swamp Vanishes

The launch speech for the RHSV’s current exhibition, The Swamp Vanishes, is now available online.

Launch speech: Dr Gary Presland

Curator: Lenore Frost

Consulting historian: Dr Gary Presland

Curatorial support: Richard Barnden and David Thompson

Before European settlers arrived in the Port Phillip district, a large wetland that lay between the Yarra River and the Moonee Ponds Creek sustained the indigenous people and the cultural traditions of the Kulin nation.


RHSV applauds new history grants

The Minister for Education, Dan Tehan, announced on Monday 27 January that $12 million was earmarked for academics to pursue research on Australian issues, focussing on Australian culture, society and history.

The Royal Historical Society of Victoria (RHSV) applauds the greater attention given to Australian history, society and culture with these additional grants.

“For too long Australian history has been seen by many as uninteresting and unimportant. However, it is the site of a massive human drama in which the oldest living culture was disrupted by one driven by ideas of private property,



We were delighted to see, in the Australia Day Honours, that six of our own had been awarded Orders of Australia. Our congratulations and best wishes to 

  • Our President, Emeritus Professor Richard Broome AM for significant service to education in the field of history, and to historical groups.  
  • Our Hon Secretary, Carole Woods OAM for service to community history. 
  • Our Victorian Historical Journal co-editor, Dr Judy Smart AM for significant service to education,

Richard Broome on local ABC with Andrew Hansen

While you were still snoozing at 6:20am Richard Broome, our President, was busy chatting to Andrew Hansen (of Chaser fame) on local ABC radio about Melbourne’s Twenty Decades, our latest publication, and the website is close to meltdown with book orders. ABC listeners are quick on the draw!

If you’d like to listen to the interview:
https://www.abc.net.au/…/progr…/breakfast/breakfast/11848484 (the interview is about 4 mins 20 seconds into the podcast).

If you still haven’t bought your copy (and don’t be the only person in Melbourne without one) click on the link:


Fire Salvage

Follow this link to our resources website page on Disaster Management. There are links to excellent information and videos on how to salvage items from collections after a fire or flood. There are also case-studies and chronologies on how disaster responses unfold. We hope our affiliated societies never have to put this into action but good planning, good information and good examples are our friends in difficult times.


Not a night owl? Listen to 3AW podcast.

If you’re usually tucked up in bed early on a Sunday night & missed our president, Richard Broome, chewing the fat with the 3AW Sunday Night Team, here is a link to the podcast. (Scroll forward to 1:02:04 for Richard’s Interview).

Richard comes on around 1:02:04 & is chatting about our latest publication, Melbourne’s Twenty Decades.

Thanks to everyone who has popped in today to pick up their copies,


Heritage Committee speaks against Melb City Council plans

In a busy month for the RHSV Heritage Committee they have continued the campaign to save the cultural heritage of the Queen Victoria Market and, at a public meeting on 19 November, the committee chair, Charles Sowerwine, spoke out against City of Melbourne Council plans for the market. On the 1st of November a submission was made re Market Square and on 16 October a submission was made on the proposed discontinuance of part of Franklin Street and part of Queen Street,


Launch speeches for Mallee Country and Melbourne’s Twenty Decades

Did you miss our two great launches? You can read the launch speeches here.

Tom Griffiths launches Mallee Country: Land, People, History by Richard Broome, Charles Fahey, Andrea Gaynor and Katie Holmes. 

Stuart Macintyre launches Melbourne’s Twenty Decades edited by Richard Broome, Richard Barnden, Elisabeth Jackson and Judith Smart. 

And you can buy the books here:

Mallee Country: Land, People, History

Melbourne’s Twenty Decades



RHSV wins Community Heritage Grant

The RHSV has been awarded a $14,894 federal Community Heritage Grant to fund museum-standard shelving for our all-important manuscript collection. This is the third and final grant in a three-part process.

The grant was announced at the National Library of Australia in Canberra on October 30.

Grants worth almost $383,000 have been distributed this year to 61 community groups and organisations from around Australia to assist in the identification and preservation of community owned but nationally significant heritage collections.



Get involved!

Do you have a yen to trace your family? A desire to understand just why your home town grew like it did? A craving to understand the development of your favourite sport or your alma mater?

Full program: available here

“The study of the past and telling its stories are critical to our sense of belonging, to our communities and to our shared future.” Opening paragraph of The Value of History Statement,