Colour photograph of the Kodak Australasia factory in Abbotsford, Victoria, circa 1962.

The Abbotsford factory was initially the site of the Austral Plate Company, created by Thomas Baker, a pharmaceutical chemist, in 1884. After Baker went into partnership with accountant, John Rouse, to develop the photographic manufacturing company, Baker and Rouse Pty Ltd, they proposed a merger with Eastman Kodak in 1907. In 1908, Australian Kodak Limited was formed and evolved to become what is known today as Kodak Australasia. The Abbotsford site remained the base for the operations of Kodak Australasia until the late 1950s.

Kodak manufactured and distributed a wide range of photographic products to Australasia, such as film, paper, chemicals, cameras and miscellaneous equipment. Its client base included amateur and professional photographers, as well as specialist medical and graphic art professionals who used photography, x-ray and other imaging techniques.

This photograph is part of the Kodak collection of products, promotional materials, photographs and working life artefacts collected from Kodak Australasia in 2005, when the Melbourne manufacturing plant at Coburg closed down.

Description of Content

Wide angle image of Kodak factory buildings taken from across the Yarra River. In the middle ground and at the centre, there are two chimneys. The tallest to the right, the Powerhouse chimney, was probably built in the 1930s. The Powerhouse provided all the power and refrigeration for the Kodak factory. Next to this is a tower with a water tank positioned on top. The tank contained distilled water which was used in manufacturing processes. The tallest building in the background was known as No.6, the film coating building. To the far right of the image, the tallest building is the Kodachrome building, where film and paper prints were processed and where the research lab was housed. In front of this building is the Glass Plate building. In the foreground is the Yarra River, with trees and tracks along the bank of the river. Close to the river's edge at the centre of the photograph, there are single storey buildings made from aluminium sheeting. These buildings were used for maintenance workshops and the staff canteen. To the left of these buildings in the foreground there are discarded drums and possibly waste material. To the far left of the image is a two storey brick building with a fence demarcating the property that runs the length of the Yarra River frontage.

Physical Description

Colour photograph on lightweight Kodak paper, landscape format with a white border.

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