Four soup bowls, found stacked together, unbroken, in the wreckage of Bill Coppinger's home at Mount Disappointment destroyed in the Kilmore East Bushfire on 7 February 2009. The kitchen was on the lower level and had another floor with a parents' retreat above it. There was another floor below. All of these collapsed, yet these bowls survived unbroken.

This is part of the Victorian Bushfires Collection, which includes a number of interviews with Bill Coppinger and a large range of fire affected artefacts from his destroyed home.

Physical Description

Four white vitreous ceramic soup bowls; found stacked together.


This is a story of good fire preparation but ultimate defeat before an overwhelming firestorm. On 7 February 2009, the donor watched closely as the Kilmore East Fire jumped the Hume Highway and moved across to the base of his property on Mount Disappointment. He was well prepared and had planned to leave early, but a rapid wind change resulted in him being trapped. His house, sheds and all of their contents were destroyed. He lost his dog and very nearly lost his life.

These bowls also demonstrate the random destructiveness of the fires, in which an entire house could be lost but four fragile ceramic bowls survive in the midst of the devastation. In 2019 Bill reflected that the bowls, a gift from family, also provided 'a glimmer of hope, and something to pin our memories to . it was like a hand was being placed on my shoulder, saying 'it will be alright'.'

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