Box Brownie style camera from the collection of the Marysville Historical Society. Retrieved from the ruins of the Marysville Historical Society Museum following the 7 February 2009 bushfires.

Physical Description

Box camera with 5 glass lenses, all slumped from the heat of the fire. The original coating of the box burned, leaving a whitish residue. Some rust is evident.


These artefacts document the destruction of the Marysville Historical Society's collection and its building during the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires that also devastated the timber and tourist town of Marysville.

Being close to Melbourne, and surrounded by the grandeur of the Mountain Ash forests, Marysville has always been a place for tourists and day trippers from Melbourne. Much of the history of this picturesque location has been preserved through the photographs and films captured by tourists, which formed a significant part of the image collection held by the Marysville Historical Society. They are a poignant reminder of the highly visual and temporal way in which the beauty and natural heritage of Marysville has been documented over the decades using cameras, film and magic lanterns. The images that were part of the Marysville Historical Society are in marked contrast to the bleak, burnt landscape that followed the razing of Marysville.

The rebuilding of Marysville is also closely linked to the rebuilding of the Historical Society and its photographic collections, and the meaning that Marysville holds for its residents and visitors. Mary Kenealy, Secretary of the Marysville Historical Society, has received many donations of photographs from all over Australia that are aiding in this reconstruction of the history of Marysville. The sad and difficult reality is that while Mary is thrilled to see the gradual rebuilding of Marysville's heritage, in 2010 she will celebrate her silver wedding anniversary without a single image of her own wedding or subsequent family life.

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