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Catalogue service interruption: There is currently an issue with online requests. Please contact the Library if you are unable to order items online. We apologise for any inconvenience.

La Trobe Reading Room event: A traditional Chinese drum performance will be held in the La Trobe Reading Room on Thursday 4 September, from 6pm until 6.10pm. More information

Catalogue service interruption & La Trobe Reading Room event
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Annual appeal

Along with a range of memberships and other opportunities to support us, the State Library holds special fundraising appeals to help acquire, conserve and display significant collection items.

2014 appeal thank you

The 2014 annual appeal has been a great success and donations are now closed. Thanks to your generous contributions, we have exceeded the funding required for each of our campaign items.

With your support, we have acquired The Diggers Ten Commandments and La Fin du Monde, and we can also progress the digitisation and preservation of 3000 extraordinary photographs of Fitzroy and Castlemaine from the Committee for Urban Action (CUA) collection.

The Library would like to thank all of our supporters who contributed to our annual campaign. It is only through your generosity that we are able to secure important historical items such as these. Now and in the future they will be a source of learning, pleasure and inspiration for all Victorians.

We will let you know when these items are on public display.

If you would like to know more about other ways to support the Library, please visit our Friends of the Library page or contact Adrienne Conway on 8664 7517 or friends@slv.vic.gov.au.

Appeal acquisitions

A goldfields rarity

Photo of the Diggers Ten Commandments

The Diggers Ten Commandments is an anonymous, rare document circulated in the Victorian goldfields between 1851 and 1860. Composed in a light-hearted style by an unknown Ballarat digger, this six-page handwritten document sets down the largely unwritten rules of conduct for diggers.

Owning this valuable piece of history – which reflects Australia’s 'fair go for all' philosophy – helps us continue to tell the story of 19th-century goldmining and safeguard the rich history of Victoria.

A modernist masterpiece

 

Photo of La Fin du MondeLa Fin du Monde is a key 20th-century illustrated book. Printed in 1919, this exquisite masterpiece of image and typography is illustrated by the brilliant French Cubist Fernand Léger and features text by modernist poet Blaise Cendrars.

Renowned curator and art writer Robert Johnson described it as 'the most beautiful and accessible French artists' book of its era... A message of modernity is evident on every page of this bibliographic masterpiece.'

The acquisition of this beautiful example of modern book design, and its display in our Mirror of the world: books and ideas exhibition, makes it a continuing inspiration for all.

1970s streetscapes

Photo of film negatives of CUA Streetscapes

The Library's unique collection of CUA Streetscapes is a vast Google-style photographic survey of inner Melbourne. In the 1970s a group called the Committee for Urban Action – concerned at the destruction of Victoria’s building heritage – photographed an extraordinary number of streetscapes.

The details in these images offer a rich record of life in the 1970s and form the basis of the heritage overlays still used in urban planning today.

Digitising 3000 images from the collection – the photographs of a whole Fitzroy block as well as a selection of streets in Castlemaine – will make this amazing legacy accessible to an even wider audience of students, artists and historians.

More to explore