'All Burke's books &c have been saved': the Burke and Wills papers in the State Library of Victoria

Phoenix, Dave (2010) 'All Burke's books &c have been saved': the Burke and Wills papers in the State Library of Victoria. La Trobe Journal, 86. pp. 3-22.

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Abstract

The Burke and Wills Expedition generated a huge amount of documentation, the single largest collection of which was deposited in the Melbourne Public Library in March 1875 by the expedition’s organisers, the Royal Society of Victoria. This collection includes manuscripts, maps, pictures and artefacts and contains some 12,000 plus pages in 13 boxes. The Society, however, had not originally intended to place the archives with the library, as they were hoping to use the material to compile an official history of the expedition. This publication never eventuated and many of the papers, particularly those relating to the expedition’s journey from Cooper Creek to the Gulf of Carpentaria and back, disappeared in the intervening period. In addition, the records are unusual as the leader did not leave a comprehensive journal, so the archive material left by other members takes on particular importance: it is essential to understand who made them, why, and how their reliability can be assessed. What happened to them afterwards is an object lesson in the survival, or otherwise, of historical records.

Item ID: 16844
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1441-3760
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Additional 4 pages of references and author information are at end of this 20 page article.

Date Deposited: 15 May 2011 09:46
FoR Codes: 21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2103 Historical Studies > 210303 Australian History (excl Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950503 Understanding Australias Past @ 100%
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