History articles

The parade that almost didn’t happen

The parade that almost didn’t happen

By Dr Cheryl Griffin – Royal Historical Society of Victoria To celebrate Victoria’s centenary in 1934, well-known philanthropist, businessman and he of Cherry Ripe fame, Sir Macpherson Robertson, sponsored a trail-blazing air race from Mildenhall RAF Base in East Anglia to Melbourne.  It was promoted as “The World’s Greatest Air Race” and there was plenty

Intersection of Swanston and Flinders streets, looking north, 1890s

By Dr Cheryl Griffin At first glance there is little that is familiar about this street scene taken some time in the early 1890s. The traffic is dominated by horses and carts. The pedestrians cross without streetlights to guide them. Public transport consists of cable trams, a relatively recent innovation. The roads are in poor

St James Buildings, Bourke St frontage, 1959

By Dr Cheryl Griffin – Royal Historical Society Victoria The eastern sections of Bourke St and Collins St are well documented and known for the ambience and fine architecture found in areas such as the “Paris end” of Collins St. But this picturesque scene featuring a long-gone St James St is at the other end

Flinders St from Yarra Bank, 1950

By Dr Cheryl Griffin – Royal Historical Society of Victoria Taken in the first decade after the end of World War II, this view from Yarra Bank Rd on the south bank of the Yarra River looks towards Flinders St from King St to William St and finally Market St.  This is probably a less

An early Melbourne high-rise

By Dr Cheryl Griffin – Royal Historical Society of Victoria Looking at this streetscape today, the 11-storey building that dominates the left side (the south side) of this early 1950s photograph of Bourke St raises no eyebrows.  It is the Commonwealth Bank Building at 219-225 Bourke St and in its day it was something of

A winter’s walk in Fitzroy Gardens, 1913

By Dr Cheryl Griffin – Royal Historical Society of Victoria It’s a stark but beautiful winter scene in one of Melbourne’s oldest parks, a landscape laid bare. The skeletal elm trees stand like proud sculptures extending skywards, their shadows creating faint stripes of light and shade along the pathway in the silvery sunlight.  This is

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