Unused Visitor's Pass to the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, New York, USA, in the format of a postcard, and featuring a photograph of the factory site, known as Kodak Park, from the air.

This Visitor's Pass was collected as a souvenir by Mr Edgar Rouse, the Chief Managing Director of Kodak Australasia Pty Ltd, in 1939 while on a journey to the United States of America. Newly appointed as the Chief Managing Director after the previous incumbent, his father Mr John 'JJ' Rouse, had died in 1938, Mr Edgar Rouse was visiting the USA to consult with Eastman Kodak Company executives at the head office in Rochester, New York. It is thought that Mr Edgar Rouse travelled on the Orient Line Royal Mail Liner "Orion" while travelling to the USA.

When he returned to Australia, Mr Rouse gave this booklet and a number of other postcards and souvenirs to Mr Harry Clarke, the thirteen year old son of Kodak Australasia employees who lived onsite at the Kodak factory in Abbotsford, Melbourne. While away on his trip, Mr Rouse had also sent a number of postcards to Harry Clarke and his parents.

Harry Clarke lived on the Kodak factory site in Abbotsford with his parents at the 'Yarra Grange' house from 1938, when he was twelve years old, until 1952, when he was twenty six years old. His mother was the chef in the Kodak directors' dining room and his father worked in silver recovery and then later was a gardener at Kodak. He felt very important to have the chief of Kodak interested in his well-being. Harry remembers that Mr Rouse 'took a shine to me as a small child and on one occasion invited me and his son, John Rouse to be guests with the directors of Kodak in their dining room, which of course brought great pride and joy to my mother. He wrote me cards and sent me cards of boats that he'd travelled on to America, and whilst he was in America he sent me very detailed postcards with long, handwritten notes... He was always very, very kind and gentle with, not only me but my mother and father, who he had great respect for.'

Harry says that 'When I lived at Kodak it was a huge, very huge place, and I seemed to live a very privileged life for a small child, I had the virtual run of the factory excepting some sections, particularly during the war years.... The staff at Kodak were like a large family. ...Living at Kodak at that time was very much like living in an enlarged family, everybody seemed to be very friendly and supportive, the dining room I think provided meals free of charge, there was a lot of benevolence in that period of time.'

Physical Description

Postcard with a black and white photograph on the front and a printed Visitor's Pass form on the back. It is unused.


This postcard provides a glimpse into international relations between Kodak Australasia and Eastman Kodak Company in the USA. It also shows the highly organised approach that Eastman Kodak Company took to promoting visitors to their factory and supervising them while there. It additionally holds a personal story relating to Kodak Australasia Managing Director Mr Edgar Rouse and his benevolent relationship with Mr Harry Clarke, the young son of two Kodak Australasia employees. The oral history interview recorded with Harry Clarke as an elderly man looking back on his experience living at the Kodak factory site as a child, and the associated ephemera of his time living at the factory provide a unique insight into the history of manufacturing and industry, and childhood in the 1930s to 1950s.

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