Ann Larkins and the Spaces of the King’s Female Orphan School – PHA (Vic &Tas) talk at the Allport

Do you have an interest in Tasmanian history and want to hear from researchers about their discoveries?

The next Professional Historians Association (Vic and Tas) talk at the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts is on Thursday 6 October from 1:00 pm – 2:00pm.

Listen to Ann-Marie Ezzy explore the spaces of an orphanage, the King’s Female Orphan School, which opened in Hobart Town in 1828, and discover how its operation incarcerated the children of convicts like Ann Larkins.

Book a seat on Eventbrite. Can’t make it? Register online for the webinar.

Image: Digitised item from: Tasmanian Archives: Public Works Department – Plans – Male and Female Orphan Schools – former to be built at New Town, latter at Hobart Town and Plan of the Orphan Schools. https://stors.tas.gov.au/AI/PWD266-1-1458

Tasmanian Archives on the move: from Berriedale to the new Geilston Bay Repository

The Tasmanian Archives collection will be relocating from Berriedale to a new facility at Geilston Bay – the Geilston Bay Repository – from September to November 2022.

While we move there will be a period of time when records may not be available.


Have you seen the new mural at the Geilston Bay Repository?

Contemporary artist Josh Foley, based in Launceston, Tasmania, has recently made his artwork Waves of Time on the new archives building. Josh describes his work as relating to “a kind of ocean of space/time whereby we are mapping and co-ordinating our current perspective based upon all the data we choose to keep”.

The mural was commissioned as part of the Arts Tasmania and Tasmanian Government Art Site Scheme.


We are looking forward to working in our brand-new archive space!

If walls could talk: researching the stories and histories of Tasmanian buildings

Do you know when your house was built, or who lived there before? Or, do you want to find out more about where an ancestor lived in Tasmania?

Visit in person at the State Library and Tasmanian Archives Reading Room from early August.

Showing until March 2023, our building history display at the State Library and Tasmanian Archives Reading Room illustrates different pathways to finding out more about the history of your own home, or a place from the past that may have significance to your family heritage.

These historic photographs and films, newspapers, census records, maps, house plans, deeds and land grants – all reveal a rich insight into the structural history and architecture of a particular building, as well as the varied lives of inhabitants. 

Learn how to find out how a property may have changed over time, research past owners and occupiers, and discover the origins and significance of places and communities in the surrounding regions.

Curious about what you might find in the Tasmanian Archives? Home to more than 1.2 million archive and heritage items, you can easily explore the archives from your own device.

Image citation: Tasmanian Archives: Photograph – House at Dodges Ferry (1896), NS1553/1/469


National Family History Month

Records and indexes and archives, oh my!

Have you ever wondered what history your home holds? Is there talk about a long-lost family farm? Do you have a family tree that spans the world?

August is National Family History Month (NFHM), and our State Library, Tasmanian Archives and Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts at Libraries Tasmania are hosting talks that will spark your interest. Hosted by historians and family history experts, the talks will take you on a journey as you discover how to use convict records, the Names Index, TROVE, our Tasmanian Archives, and more.

Can’t make it in person? Sign up for the webinars and enjoy from the comfort of your home.

Whether you’re new to family history research or a seasoned expert, why not try one of our many fascinating Family History Month talks – here is just a selection from Eventbrite:

Keep up with the current conversation on Libraries Tasmania SoundCloud. Download the Family History Month talks program here (PDF, 2.5MB)


91 STORIES… the Mt. Wellington Park: Map of roads and tracks!

Let’s take a closer look at the Mt. Wellington Park: Map of roads and tracks! Read the full story behind the original Mt Wellington map and its creator on the State Library and Tasmanian Archives blog.

Find your favourite and familiar walking tracks. The Fingerpost Track, Crocodile Rock, and the Mount Arthur Ski Slopes are just some of the many features that can be found on a stunning map of kunanyi/Mount Wellington produced in 1935 by the Hobart Walking Club.

The map, drawn by renowned Tasmanian artist Vernon Hodgman (1909-1984) and created to make the mountain more accessible, is a snapshot in time and features the unfinished road to the pinnacle as well as the main walking trails and huts.

Two walkers and a skier stride around the outside – Vernon Hodgman’s original mock-ups of these three figures appear in the display ‘By Mountain and Sea’: 100 years of Cadbury’s at Claremont, which showed at the State Library of Tasmania and Tasmanian Archives Reading Room from January to July.

Read the full story behind the original Mt Wellington map and its creator on the State Library and Tasmanian Archives blog on The Art of Mapping kunanyi/ Mount Wellington or by visiting libraries.tas.gov.au/GetCurious

View the 91 STORIES online exhibition

Hungry for more stories? This year we are digging deeper into a selection of the 91 Stories exhibition.

Curated from selections by the Tasmanian public, the exhibition includes your favourites from the State Library of Tasmania, Tasmanian Archives and the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts.

Libraries.tas.gov.au/91stories

#GetCurious #91Stories #GetTheFullPicture

91 STORIES… The Toreador!


Watch The Toreador live in performance at Stories After Dark. Find out more about attending this special event by following on Facebook or Eventbrite.


This year we are getting curious and digging deeper into a selection of the 91 Stories exhibition.

Curated from selections by the Tasmanian public, the exhibition includes your favourites from the State Library of Tasmania, Tasmanian Archives and the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts.

Let’s take a closer look at The Toreador…

A single item can be a window into a story that weaves itself across locations and generations. And a ‘musical score’ – the sheets of music notes used for a performance – owned by a notable (yet until recently, largely forgotten) Tasmanian woman is one of these windows…

Read about the full story of Lucy Benson in The Lady Conductor and the Score of the Toreador in the State Library and Tasmanian Archive Blog.

View the 91 STORIES online exhibition.

Libraries.tas.gov.au/91stories

#GetCurious #91Stories #GetTheFullPicture

Get Curious

This year, Libraries Tasmania will be celebrating the key cultural collections of the State Library of Tasmania, Tasmanian Archives and the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts.

We will be inviting you once again to discover more about Tasmania’s past, and how you can play a role in telling Tasmania’s stories. 

So, get ready to… Get Curious!

Many Tasmanians sent us their favourite object, image or manuscript from the collections of the State Library of Tasmania, Tasmanian Archives and the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts to create the beautiful 91 Stories Exhibition in 2021.

This year we will delve deeper into just a few of the 91 Stories. Stay tuned for information about upcoming events and to hear from our archivists and people in our community with connections to these stories, who will help bring them to life.

Rediscover our 91 STORIES online exhibition.

150 Years of Tasmanian Railways

To celebrate 150 years of Tasmanian Railways, Libraries Tasmania is showcasing favourite photographs and plans that document the history of our state’s railways.

From staggering feats of engineering and the enabling of complex mining operations, to employment for men and women and family social outings, railways have played an important role in the economic and social history of Tasmania for 150 years. 

The story of the Tasmanian Railways is one of great successes, but also of hardships, economic failures, and disasters. It is a colourful and dynamic history.

The 150 Years of Tasmanian Railways photography exhibition is now open in libraries around Tasmania and online. Get in touch with your local library to find out more.

Click to access the full digital exhibition

For those who want to delve into those intricate technical drawings, expansive line plans and registers of rolling stock, we have also released a new and expansive Tasmanian Railway Guide to our railway records. Learn how to research Tasmanian rail records with Librarian, Ali Marchant, by watching her video below.

For more archives and heritage resources, head to the Libraries Tasmania website.

To read more about the history of Tasmanian Railways, and for more exciting articles, sign up to the Tasmanian Archives and Heritage blog.