September 30, 2013

Significance Assessment work shop - Lithgow 21/9/13

  Report by Elaine Kaldy on Central Tablelands Significance Assessment work shop.

The Central Tablelands Chapter NSW of Museums Australia held a workshop on Significance assessment last Saturday at the Lithgow Small Arms Factory Museum.

The workshop was conducted by Kylie Winkworth one of Australia’s leading museum advisors on understanding objects held by museums and their significance either as objects or as a part of a museum’s collections.

The workshop was presented as an interactive learning process. Participants were required to select an object from their Museum’s collection and then construct a object report on that object, based on instructions circulated by M/s Winkworth prior to the holding of the workshop

Tony Bouffler from Orange Historical Society presenting his object report at the
                       work shop being over seen by Kylie Winkworth

 Kylie encouraged the group to make suggestions that could be add to each members object report as it was presented to the workshop.
The subject that was selected for a significance  work up was a cigar box made by the Lithgow  Small Arms Factory to be presented to the then Prime Minister Hon R Menzies at the factories 50th year celebrations.
Mr Kery Guiren Secretary of the Lithgow Small Arms Factory was selected to work with Kylie as she demonstrated the techniques required to do the significance assessment. A guideline to assessing objects for significance was provided to the members attending the workshop
 The work shop was considered an outstanding success by members and plans are to made, to have more workshops on collection management and significance.
 The valuation responses showed that 50% of those attending the work shop had no prior knowledge of how to assess significance of museum objects.

 Kylie and Kerry introducing the Story of the Cigar Box’s history

  Kylie questioning Kerry about the way the Cigar Box was made

Kerry relating to Kylie the problem that was overcome
with the lid of the Cigar Box when
it was presented to Prime Minister Hon R Menzies

 The Central Tablelands Chapter NSW of MA wish to acknowledge that This project is supported by Arts NSW’s VIM Grant Program, a devolved funding program administered by Museums & Galleries NSW on behalf of the NSW Government

Abstracts from the significance assessment of the cigar Box
                                                   Fabric of the item 

Rectangular coachwood cigar box with rounded lid. Internal timber partitions and removable lid are cedar and left raw as was customary in cigar boxes. The box doesn’t smell of cigars (was it presented with cigars or empty?). 
Box constructed with housed joints with corners rounded off, walnut varnished exterior. Rosewood varnish to internal edges of box and lid. The bottom of the box is fitted with a green crushed velvet pad. Lid is finished internally with black lacquer and has an oval brass inscription plate attached with four chromed round head slotted screws. A chrome plated relief of L1A1 rifle is soldered to the plate. Interesting that the engraving is very industrial in nature but the L1A1 relief is more finely modelled and reflects the skill of the pattern maker who made the die for the L1A1. The text on the plate is plain, not calligraphic and flowery as in most presentation inscriptions, and reflects the industrial nature of the Factory. Rotating opening catch on front has raised motif in the shape of the logo for the 50th anniversary of the factory opening. Opening mechanism designed to raise the lid when the Reputedly made by the wood room foreman Wally Westbrook, although it may have been made by Bob Mitchell. The box was finished and varnished by apprentice painter Greg Meyer.
The box expresses the character, skills and attitude of Factory workmanship.

                                               Statement of Significance:

Rectangular coachwood cigar box made at Lithgow SAF c.1962 and presented to Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies by factory apprentice Greg Meyer in November 1962 during the opening ceremony of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Factory. Fitted to the front of the box is a circular rotating opening catch with a raised motif in the shape of the 50th anniversary logo. The box lid has an internal oval brass inscription plate with a chrome plated relief of L1A1 rifle. The internal partitions are cedar and left raw as was customary in cigar boxes. During the time that cigar smoking was an acceptable pastime for gentlemen dignitaries were often presented with cigar boxes. Menzies, during his time in office, received a number of them. This box differs to other presentation cigar boxes in that it was specially made at the Factory as a gift for the current serving Australian Prime Minister. Its simplicity is representative of 60’s design values. It is less elaborate, more utilitarian and intended for everyday use rather than displayed in a trophy cabinet. The box well expresses the character, skills and attitude of Factory workmanship. This cigar box is significant for its association with Australia’s up til now longest serving Prime Minister and the Small Arms Factory, the first high precision mass production factory in Australia. The 50th anniversary of the Small Arms Factory was a spectacular week long affair that involved the whole town and attracted high profile dignitaries as guests. This box is reminiscent of an era when Australia was a powerful, imaginative and innovative manufacturer with pride in its work and when pomp and ceremony was more important than accountability.

September 20, 2013

Ben Hall Raid Weekend Festival - Issue 8 - Last Days to Go!


Being my eighth e-newsletter this is the last before the Ben Hall Raid Weekend Festival and the second last in the series. The very last will be produced with a wrap-up covering the weekend’s event, though it may be several weeks before I get a chance to finish it as I have another major weekend to work on – this being the Collectables Swap Meet and Gem Expo being held at the Bathurst Showground on Saturday 30th November and Sunday 1st December, 2013. 

It has been a long haul to get to where the committee is now with everything that has to be arranged. A massive amount of research has gone into ensuring that we have the information to be incorporated into the various site information signs. 

The bookings for the various tours are receiving entries daily and will ultimately see some people miss out on taking the opportunity to visit the “Ben Hall” sites. Many sites will have numbered information boards to inform visitors and Bathurstians as to what took place there or what part the location played. 

Already collectors have many of their displays labelled and ready to travel to Bathurst to put them out on display in front of the Bathurst Court House from 10am till 5pm on Saturday. 

The organisers are encouraging anyone attending to wear any colonial or bushranging costume throughout the festival. Already we know that there will be a number of colonial ladies, bushrangers and troopers wandering around on the day. The Lithgow Living History group of re-enactors will keep many enthralled and provide a mirror into our colonial past. 

Many collectors and volunteers will be participating to bring visitors and the general public an event to remember during the Ben Hall Raid Weekend Festival on Saturday 28th September. On behalf of the Bathurst District Historical Society and the Ben Hall Raid Weekend Festival Committee we would like to thank those who have given freely of their time to ensure a weekend to remember.

Lastly on behalf of the Bathurst District Historical Society I would like to acknowledge all the sponsors who have made generous donations in support of the weekend activities. 

Alan McRae, FAIHA, President Bathurst District Historical Society

To view the full Newsletter click here, for program click here.

September 18, 2013

An Irish Heritage: The Daltons of Orange

 Email below from Orange & District Historical Society.

Greetings all,

As our program comes together the excitement is beginning to mount.
We greatly appreciate your interest in the coming Dalton exhibition being organised by Orange and District Historical Society. This is a brief update about the exhibition and related events so you can make a note in your diary.

The exhibition opening will take place at 6 for 6.30pm at Duntryleague, Woodward Street, Orange, on Thursday 7 November. It will be opened by the Irish Consul-General Ms Caitriona Ingoldsby. This event will be by invitation.
The exhibition will continue daily from Friday 8 November until Sunday 17 November from 10am to 4pm. Entry will be $5 for adults and $3 for school children.
Included in the exhibition, in the adjoining Dalton and Cedar rooms, will be explanatory posters covering the lives of James Dalton Senior, his sons Thomas and James, their homes, the Orange Dalton Brothers’ store and flour mills, the Dalton pastoral empire, the Sydney import/export business, the family’s relationship with the Catholic Church, their support of the Irish cause, their homes and the younger generation, as well as photographs, documents and other items connected with the family.

During the exhibition period, the owners of five Dalton homes have agreed to host guided tours. They are:
Ammerdown: Friday 8 November, 9am, 10.30am, 1pm & 2.30pm
Knocklong: Wednesday 13 November, 10am, 11am, 2pm & 3pm
Mena: Friday 15 November, 11am and 2pm
Emly: Saturday 16 November, 2pm & 3pm
Galbally: Sunday 17 November, 2pm, 3pm & 4pm
Tickets will cost $10 for one house, $15 for two, $20 for three, $25 for four and $30 for five. They must be bought ahead by contacting Dave & Julie Sykes, phone: 6362-1682 (email:, or Phil Stevenson on 0402 412 188 (email: They may be picked up at Heritage Cottage, 148 March Street on Wednesdays 10-12.30pm and 2-4pm or elsewhere by prior arrangement. No tickets will be sold at the entrance to the houses.
This is a rare opportunity to visit these Dalton houses and marvel at the stunning architecture and rich interiors.

The society is also hosting two screenings of the popular 1927 silent movie about Orange, ‘The Way We Were’. This extremely rare movie had its premiere in Orange last year after lying forgotten under a house in Condobolin for many years. It shows Orange’s streets, shops, businesses and people as they were 86 years ago. It was so popular that we showed it six times to packed houses. Of particular interest to anyone with connections to the Dalton family is a glimpse of Dalton Brothers’ store, the Dalton flour mill in Peisley Street, and Michael Dalton with colleagues at Canobolas Shire Council.
The movie will be shown at 6.30 for 7pm at Odeon Cinema 5, William Street, Orange, on Sunday 3 November and Sunday 10 November. Tickets will cost $15. They must be bought ahead by contacting Dave & Julie Sykes, phone: 6362-1682 (email:, or Phil Stevenson on 0402 412 188 (email: They may be picked up at Heritage Cottage, 148 March Street on Wednesdays 10-12.30pm and 2-4pm. No tickets will be sold at the cinema.

We do hope that you can attend some or all of the above events. The exhibition, Dalton homes tours and the 1927 movie are the society’s major fund-raiser for the year. The funds generated will go towards our continuing work to preserve the history of Orange and District.
Many thanks to those who have provided us with information on the Daltons and associated families. We shall continue collecting Dalton history right up to and well beyond the exhibition dates. I am sure that we have barely scratched the surface of their amazing story.
Best regards

Phil Stevenson
(For Liz Edwards, our Dalton project chair who is taking a well earned break travelling in Central Asia until 10th October)

September 10, 2013

State History Conference 2013

The conference will examine place and landscape; museum collections; new family history resources; society management and commemorating the past. The conference highlights includes:

•   Pre-conference State Records visit

•   Welcome drinks from 5.30pm hosted by Blue Mountains Historical Society at 5.30 pm Friday 1 November a historic Hobby’s Reach, 99-101 Blaxland Road Wentworth Falls

•   Presentations by local and specialist historians

•   The awarding of RAHS Certificates of Achievement

•   Sales tables for the sale of local histories and member publications
•   Announcement and presentation of Arts NSW Cultural and NSW Heritage grants

•   Opportunities to network with other historical societies around NSW

Choice of Saturday Afternoon Tours at Katoomba and Conference dinner Saturday night

To view/download full details and booking form click here.

September 9, 2013

Molong Historical Society Newsletter - Winter 2013

Mrs Gosper, Marie Hammond & Margaret Lee congratulating Maureen Kirkwood 
on her MOLONG CITIZEN OF THE YEAR award on Australia Day 2013

View/download Newsletter

September 4, 2013

Legends of Lithgow - Capturing the Lithgow community

The Zig-Zag railway, Lithgow Valley, 1873, drawn by C. Martens, image courtesy SLNSW

Organisation Name: Lithgow Library Learning Centre
Event Type: Exhibition
When: Saturday, 7 September 2013 to Friday, 20 September 2013 from 09:00 am to 06:00 pm (Monday to Friday), 09:00 am to 12:00 pm (Saturday)
Where: Lithgow Library Learning Centre, 157 Main Street , Lithgow
Cost: Free
Contact: Kay Shirt, 02 6352 9100,,

This display of photographs, family documents and ephemera donated to the library will provide a glimpse of the Lithgow community and show how the library is involved in preserving community heritage. The display will also include entries in the Lithgow Branch of the National Trust inaugural history competition. The display will be opened on Friday, 6 September with an address by Dr Margaret Penson on the role of the library in preserving Lithgow’s history.

September 3, 2013

Events which may be of interest

Rebecca Pinchin, Regional Services Coordinator, Powerhouse Museum has kindly sent me a list of events which may be of interest in the next few weeks, for those who may be travelling from the Central Tablelands.

Please pass on to to those of your members who may have a potential interest.

Lecture and Workshop in Maitland

Australian Dress Register
Wednesday 11 September 2013
A public lecture and workshop on the Australian Dress Register website will be held at the Maitland Gaol 10am -11.30 (all welcome)
Lunch and afternoon tea included.
Where: Maitland Gaol Auditorium, John Street East Maitland
Cost Lecture- free, Lecture and workshop $5
Booking essential – contact Justine Malinowski – Committee Member AMCAT 0409 929 839 or  or Rebecca Pinchin  ph 9217 0220  or  Freecall 1800 882 0922

Part of History Week 7 - 15th September, 2013 Powerhouse Museum 

Caring for Photographs
Tuesday 10th September 9:30am -12:30
Photographs are a wonderful visual record of history and everyone collects them. But that history can disappear if they do are not looked after properly. In this workshop, you can find out about different photographic processes and learn conservation techniques such as surface cleaning, appropriate storage and archival framing of photos. The second session will demonstrate how to get good results from digitising and scanning your collection.

Talk: David Mist celebrates the swinging sixties, again!
Wednesday 11 September, 12.30pm – 1.30pm (arrive 12pm)
Modelled on the Birds of Britain book of 1967 which featured photographs of influential young British women like Mary Quant, Dusty Springfield and Marion Faithfull, David Mist’s Made in Australia book of 1969 focused on Australian ‘bird’ life. Revisit the era in conversation with photographer, David Mist and Powerhouse Museum curator, Anne-Marie Van de Ven

and at Castle Hill

From Streetscapes to Photo Albums 
Presented at the Powerhouse Discovery Centre, the Powerhouse Museum’s off-site publicly accessible collection storage facility at Castle Hill, Powerhouse social history curator, Anni Turnbull and Powerhouse conservator, Dee McKillop will take you on a journey through highlights of the museum’s photography collections, looking at the rationale behind collecting certain photographs, the stories behind some of the iconic photographic images in the collection, as well as providing conservation and storage tips on how to care for your own treasured family photographs.

And don’t forget the   …….

Regional Services Applications for the 2014 Regional Services program now open.
Professional advice, project assistance and regional internships are available across all the collection areas and other areas of museum practice such as developing exhibitions, museum learning, publishing, security and marketing. Closing September 2013

Thanks Rebecca

September 1, 2013

Significance Assessment Workshop at The Lithgow Small Arms Factory

Ancient Order of the Druids collection that is part of the Nationally Significant Fraternal Societies collection
Golden Memories Museum in Millthorpe.

Hello to you all.

I have now arranged the Significance Assessment Workshop with Kylie Winkworth that was requested at our last meeting at Rockley. I have gained a Museums and Galleries NSW grant to pay for Kylie’s attendance.

Our Host will be The Lithgow Small Arms Factory, as offered.

They have arranged a sit down lunch of Roast Beef and various salads for a cost of $10, which also  include a substantial morning tea.

Agenda for the Day:

   *  9.30am to 10am:  morning tea and registration

   *  10am to 10.30am:  meeting to deal with housekeeping issues

   *  10.30 am:  workshop commences,

   *  Circa 3.30 pm:  workshop finishes

This is a wonderful opportunity to gain expert training in what relates to understanding significance objects in your collections the levels of those objects whether they are of local, regional State or possibly National Significance, and how collections of objects and archival material can form significant collections (as  in the photo above).

The understanding gained will help you protect your objects and collections. It will also help you gain skills that can be used when applying for grants to help conserve the objects or collections.

I look forward to seeing you all at Lithgow on the 21st of September. Please Register with John as soon as possible, as I have documents and a little homework for you to do before the workshop and the sooner you register the sooner we can pass on the documents.


 Kind Regards to you all

Elaine Kaldy

President CTC of MA