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Melbourne International Exhibition

Reference Code: GBR/0115/RCS/Y3087A

Scope and Contents

An album with printed title page, containing mounted and captioned prints measuring approximately 290 x 235 mm., and showing the courts and exhibits of various countries. Photographer unknown. The Melbourne Exhibition, which lasted from October 1st 1880 until April 30th 1881, was the second international exhibition to be held in Australia, the first being in Sydney the previous year (see Y3086A, 'The Burning of the Garden Palace'). There had been numerous smaller exhibitions but these had been held mainly to stimulate trade within Australia. Lee Moonen, in a paper read before the Victorian Chamber of Manufactures in 1883, arguing for the organisation of a permanent Exhibition Commission, sums up the attractions of Exhibitions with a mixture of philanthropy and commercial acumen: '... the aim of an exhibition... is to afford general instruction. The masses are taught social economy by being made acquainted with articles of household use... The labouring classes are enabled to ascertain whether their earnings are commensurate with their requirements. The manufacturers can regulate their industry to meet the wants of the people. The art students are afforded a view of the collections... The people are taught what to eat, drink, and avoid, how best to clothe or shelter themselves... and an insight is given into relative profits of retailers and wholesale intermediaries etc.'


  • Creation: 1880


Conditions Governing Access

Unless restrictions apply, the collection is open for consultation by researchers using the Manuscripts Reading Room at Cambridge University Library. For further details on conditions governing access please contact Information about opening hours and obtaining a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket is available from the Library's website (


61 item(s) (61 images)

Language of Materials


Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Prints generally in good to fair condition, but with some degree of fading in from edges.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Presented to the Royal Colonial Institute by General Sir J H Lefroy, 22 October 1885.

Existence and Location of Copies

This collection is available on microfiche: Australasia, fiche numbers 65-67.


This item level description was entered by MJC and NE using information from the original typescript catalogue.


Lefroy, Sir John Henry, 1817-1890, Knight, General and Colonial Governor

Includes index.
2006-08-04 15:48:16+00:00
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
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Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom