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Listed under:  Economics and business  >  Economy  >  Wealth

Trades Hall relief for families in poverty, c1917 - asset 1

This is an excerpt from a segment in the silent black-and-white newsreel Australasian Gazette. The segment is entitled 'MELBOURNE / Distributing relief to women / and children and / unemployed at the / Trades Hall, Melbourne' and this excerpt contains four sequences. First, a group of people, mainly men, climb stairs to ...


'The hungry miles', 1955 - part 6 of 12

This is a clip from a black-and-white Australian dramatised documentary titled 'The hungry miles' that outlines the history of unionism among waterside workers and their attempts to maintain and improve working conditions in the early 1950s. In the excerpt, actors portray wealthy shipowners and their wives during the Great ...


High-rise housing: Atherton Gardens Estate

This is an information sheet providing a history of Melbourne's slum reclamation and housing estate development in the post-Second World War era, highlighting Museum Victoria's model of the Atherton Gardens Estate in Fitzroy. It is downloadable as a two-page pdf file.


Wooden Frozen Charlotte doll, c1880

This hand-carved wooden doll was excavated at Casselden Place, Melbourne, in 2003. It measures 40 mm x 7 mm, and was in use in about 1880.


My Place - Episode 8: 1938: Colum, The Shadow

The Shadow is a famous a comic character, popular at this time with children. The character and his adventures were made into a radio play that was broadcast as a serial each week. Colum and Thommo are calculating how much they need to win on the Melbourne Cup to guarantee that Thommo's family will not be evicted from their home.


'Migrant mother', 1936

This is one of the most famous photographs of the Great Depression in the USA. It shows Florence Owens Thompson aged 32 huddled together with three of her seven children (the baby is obscured). The family as a whole are described in the Library of Congress catalogue as 'migrant' (ie itinerant) pea pickers in California ...


'Old Negro (former slave) with horn with which slaves were called', 1939

This is a black-and-white photograph showing an old African American man sitting in a doorway and holding a horn once used to summon slaves to work at sunrise. The photograph was taken near Marshall in Texas, USA, by photographer Russell Lee.


'Washington, DC Government charwoman', 1942

This is a famous black-and-white anti-discrimination photograph, also widely known as 'American Gothic, Washington, DC'. It shows Mrs Ella Watson, an African American cleaner at the Treasury in Washington, USA. She is standing stiffly in front of the US flag, with a broom on one side and a mop on the other. The photograph ...


Mirror-wall of inequality

How do you define poverty? How does inequality manifest itself in society? Listen to Akram Azimi, the 2013 Young Australian of the Year, provide a vivid illustration of inequality in the city of Peshawar in Pakistan. This audio clip from Radio National's Conversations with Richard Fidler is the fourth in a series of eight.


Slums: a picture tells a thousand words

Slums aren't often considered to be the most picturesque locations, but this clip proves that Jakarta's slums can be an important subject for photography. Children who live in the slums are being encouraged to tell their story through photos. Could the power of the lens open up new opportunities for these youngsters?

Interactive resource

Norman Dean: Great Depression [ESL]

Make a storyboard for a documentary film about the Great Depression in Australia. Examine a series of photos and descriptions of life during the Great Depression. Explore the Depression's impact on unemployment, housing, poverty levels, family life and health. Choose images linking personal stories, lifestyle changes and ...


South Melbourne Methodist Mission News, c1924: Warmth and happiness

This silent black-and-white clip taken from a sponsored film shows the Reverend Robert Williams from the South Melbourne Methodist Mission distributing weekly rations of firewood to needy families as part of the Mission's work. The Reverend fills wheelbarrows, prams and firewood carts with firewood for women and children ...

Teacher resource

The Great Depression - Teacher idea

This Teacher idea describes how students explored a range of digital and other resources to develop their understanding of the Depression and its effects in Australia. It includes a unit of work developed and trialled by a teacher.

Teacher resource

Life in the Great Depression - Teacher idea

This Teacher idea uses film and firsthand accounts of the Great Depression to help students empathise with people who lived through this difficult period. It includes a unit of work developed and trialled by a teacher.


Great Depression in Australia

This collection of 23 digital curriculum resources is organised into three categories - economic policies during the Great Depression; the unemployed; and the effects of the Great Depression on Australian families. The effects of the Great Depression were felt in Australia from 1929 until the outbreak of the Second World ...


Bra Boys, 2007: 'Place of thunder'

This clip from the documentary 'Bra Boys' gives a brief history of Maroubra, the Abberton brothers and the Maroubra surf tribe, the Bra Boys. Images from etchings, paintings and an animation illustrate Maroubra's earliest history. Archival film and stills reveal the evolution of a disadvantaged modern community. The Abberton ...


Women at the soup kitchen in Melbourne, 1930

This is an except from a 1930 silent film about the soup kitchens, which were set up in Melbourne to help the victims of the Great Depression (1929-39). The excerpt shows women, some with children, coming to a soup kitchen to get a cup of tea and some food.


Women packing food parcels during the Depression

This is a silent black-and-white film clip of women, probably Red Cross volunteers, packing food parcels for the destitute in Melbourne during the Great Depression (1929-32). It shows one woman wrapping items into a brown paper package while another stacks the finished packages onto a pile.


Feeding the unemployed during the Depression

This is a silent black-and-white film clip of unemployed men receiving cups of tea and food parcels from volunteer women charity workers in Melbourne during the Great Depression. A close-up of tea being poured is followed by a pan across men seated in rows and drinking the tea.


Miners' shanties at Lightning Ridge, c1925

This is an excerpt from a silent documentary of about 1925 probably entitled 'Opal mining, Lightning Ridge'. The excerpt begins with the intertitle 'Types of shanties occupied by miners'. This is followed by footage of three homes, each with activity taking place in the foreground. A second intertitle, 'More profitable, ...