Costume of the General of Military Forces

The Chinese in Bendigo – processioning towards acceptance

A spectacular Chinese ceremonial costume was recently installed in the Museum’s Landmarks: People and Places across Australia gallery and it got me thinking about the lives of all those who for over a century wore this intricate creation – proudly and somewhat defiantly – as part of the annual Bendigo Easter Fair. You see, before this costume and many like it joined the extensive regalia collection at the Golden Dragon Museum, they played a functional and public role in the life of Bendigo’s prominent Chinese community and, by extension, the town’s general population. Yet the costume’s most important role, I suspect, was as a powerful emblem of cultural identity for the Chinese residents, who faced prejudice and discrimination both on and off the goldfields.

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Happy 40th Sydney Opera House!

The Opera House will have something the pyramids never had – it will have life. They were built as tombs, but this building is built to give happiness and refreshment to millions.”   – Queen Elizabeth II speaking at the opening of the Sydney Opera House, 20 October 1973

The Sydney Opera House turned 40 this month and observing its jubilant birthday celebrations, it is hard to imagine a time when it was not Australia’s favourite building, an international icon of our nation and the architectural envy of the world.

When it first opened to the public in October 1973, however, this extraordinary structure had been widely regarded as a proverbial thorn in the side of the New South Wales Continue reading

breastplate-cropped

Mr Briney of Pialliway

Are you a ‘Briney’?

Perhaps you know someone with that last name?

Maybe your family traces its roots back to the Tamworth area of the Liverpool Plains?

Or perhaps you are a budding detective and would relish the opportunity to solve an old mystery?

If so, you may be able to assist us in our search for information about an Aboriginal breastplate from our collection that was recently installed in the Museum’s Landmarks gallery.  The information available for individual breastplates varies significantly and unfortunately, in this case, we are certain of little more about its origins than what is inscribed on the plate.

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