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e-BULLETIN No. 133 – 2 February 2015


Hon Editor, Dr Ruth S. Kerr



1) Guides on FAHS website


2) Marita Bardenhagen Memorial Award for Local History - Tasmania


3) Battye Fellowship - Western Australia


4) John Douglas Kerr Medal of Distinction


5) New life for Cleavers store in Launceston


6) Launch of book Historic Tasmanian mountain huts


7) West Coast Wilderness Railway - Tasmania


8) Queensland history publication



1) Guides on FAHS website


Over the past several years, the Federation of Australian Historical Societies has commissioned and produced the following guides for historical societies, available on our website with links from the home page.

Cultural landscapes training manual (2012)

Heritage identification and protection (revised 2010)
Heritage tourism in Australia (2008)

Writing and Publishing Local History history (2006)




2) Marita Bardenhagen Memorial Award for Local History - Tasmania


The inaugural winners of the Marita Bardenhagen Memorial Award for Local History (advertised through FAHS E-Bulletin) were, jointly, Nic Haygarth, The Norfolk Plains: a History of Longford, Cressy, Perth and Bishopsbourne, Tasmania, and Lorraine Dooley, Building on Firm Foundations: the Cooper Family in Tasmania, Stonemasons, Builders and Architects. They each received $800. The award is administered and funded by the National Trust of Tasmania. The late Marita Bardenhagen was a member of the FAHS Council representing the Tasmanian Historical Research Association from February to September 2011.


Nic Haygarth has been an historian more than 20 years and has written extensively about Tasmania, being passionate about the remote, rural and regional areas, including the mining fields and high country. Topics have included the development of landscape photography, European heritage of the highlands, mountain huts, hunting, grazing, mining,  hiking, industrial heritage, the Rural Youth movement, caves and karst, highland tourism, conservation and a biography of mineral prospector James 'Philosopher' Smith. He was awarded a PhD in history by the University of Tasmania in 2003 and is an honorary associate of that university. He is a member of the Professional Historians Association (Tasmania) and has served on the Heritage Council of Tasmania.


Lorraine Dooley researched and wrote a major family history, Building on Firm Foundations. The Cooper Family in Tasmania: Stonemasons, Builders and Architects.


Elspeth Wishart, Senior Curator in History at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, presented the Awards.


(Source: Heritage Tasmania – News – – 18 December 2014)


3) Battye Fellowship - Western Australia

Applications are now open for the 2015 Battye Fellowship

James Sykes Battye was the State Library’s Chief Librarian from 1894 to 1954. The J.S. Battye Memorial Fellowship honours his legacy as an historian and collector of West Australian historical material.  The Fellowship was established through the Leah Jane Cohen Library Bequest to enhance understanding of Western Australia through research based on the State Library’s heritage collections.

Applications are open to Australian residents who may be historical or contemporary researchers, writers or those in the creative industries with a strong research interest.   Research must be based on the collections of the J.S. Battye Library of West Australian History and should result in a report and public presentation.

For further information visit:
Applications close 13 February 2015.

(Source: Royal Western Australia Historical Society – Email – 13 January 2015)



4) John Douglas Kerr Medal of Distinction


Nominations for the prestigious John Douglas Kerr Medal of Distinction for research and writing Queensland or Australian history have opened. The award is made jointly by The Royal Historical Society of Queensland and the Professional Historians Association (Queensland). Nominations close on 31 March 2015. Nomination forms can be downloaded from:
Further information about the award can be found at:

(Source: Royal Historical Society of Queensland & Professional Historians Association (Queensland) websites - January 2015)



5) New life for Cleavers store in Launceston

The latest Country Road store and its associated brands Witchery and Trenery within the former Cleavers building in Launceston was opened in November 2014. The building, on the corner of Brisbane and Charles Streets, Launceston had been unoccupied since the close of the ‘Chickenfeed’ store in October 2012. The Cleavers store historically served as a household ironmonger, with household wares and tin-ware advertised for sale.  The record of photographic and architectural drawings show that a number of changes occurred to the building from 1908.


(Source: Heritage Tasmania E-News December 2014)



6) Launch of book Historic Tasmanian mountain huts


Authors Nic Haygarth and Simon Cubit launched their book at The Hobart Bookshop in Salamanca Square. The publication reveals the stories of ordinary Tasmanians who lived extraordinary lives.  The book features black and white photographs of miners’, hunters’, shepherds’ and piners’ huts from the shores of Great Lake to the Savage River forests from 1900 to 1955. For more detail follow this link


(Source: Heritage Tasmania E-News December 2014)



7) West Coast Wilderness Railway - Tasmania

The full length of the West Coast Wilderness Railway from Queenstown to Strahan was re-opened on 15 December 2014 after an 18 months closure. A $12 million upgrade has been done by the Tasmanian and Commonwealth governments. The line was opened originally on 19 November 1896 at a total cost of £259,904 to transport copper concentrates from Queenstown to the port at Strahan. The line has an ABT Rack section. After closure on 29 June 1963 the line lay idle until resurrected by a $38 million project under a Centenary of Federation Fund grant together with funds of the Tasmanian state government. It reopened as a tourist train on 27 December 2002. The Federal Hotels Group bought the operational rights for 20 years. On 4 February 2013 the Federal Group broke its lease claiming that the line needed $6 million worth of repairs to the line. The commonwealth and state governments funded the work and the Tasmanian state government is offering $1.5 million for up to four years for maintenance purposes. The time table has been substantially changed since it last operated as a tourist service. The Queenstown Explorer runs on Mondays and Tuesdays. The Rack and Gorge journey from Queenstown to Dubbil Barril and back runs Wednesday to Sunday mornings. The River and Rainforest journey from Strahan to Dubbil Barril runs Wednesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons.


(Source: Sunday Examiner (Launceston) 28 December 2014 pp.1,4,5 including a series of photographs and Railways of Tasmania’s Wild West by Nick Anchen (Melbourne, Sierra Publications, 2014) pp.92-131)



8) Queensland history publication

The launch of The Royal Historical Society of Queensland / QBD bookstore publication Lost Brisbane and surrounding areas 1860-1960, showcasing the history of Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast through a series of 500 photographs of iconic buildings, factories, schools, social activities, transport, suburbs and CBD and places which have since been lost, took place on Separation Day, Wednesday 10 December 2014 at the Commissariat Store.  The Hon. Ian Walker MP, Minister for Science, Information Technology, Innovation and the Arts launched the book in front of almost 120 Society and community members. The book written by six society members, Kay Cohen, Val Donovan, Ruth Kerr, Margaret Kowald, Lyndsay Smith and Jean Stewart contains 75,000 words of text and has been widely acclaimed as an outstanding success. The print run of 9,000 books has now been sold out and a reprint has been ordered.

(Source: Report of RHSQ Separation Day Cocktail Function and Book Launch, 10 December 2014)