Medal awarded by the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes, an international fraternal organisation with lodges in South Africa and Rhodesia. In 1961 the South African Lodge separated from Rhodesia, and the Rhodesian lodge reverted to the Grand Lodge of England. This jewel could have come from a Rhodesian Lodge or the Grand Lodge itself while Lindsay and Sylvia were in London.

Sylvia Boyes (a South African-born orphan) and Lindsay Motherwell (a Melbourne-born drummer) met in Cape Town, South Africa in 1967 through their theatre connections. They fell in love but due to apartheid laws were forced to leave South Africa to marry in London. They subsequently relocated permanently to Melbourne in 1970.

Physical Description

Medal, which is round with a blue banner in which is written "Grand Lodge of England". It hangs on a green ribbon with white stripes and yellow stitching in the shape of the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes (RAOB) logo and the letters "G L E". There is a pin attached to the cross bar at the top of the ribbon.


Statement of Historical Significance:
This collection provides a significant opportunity to represent political and personal freedom as a motivation for migrating to Australia within the international context of both apartheid in South Africa and the end of the White Australia policy in Australia. The personal narrative is well documented and the objects provide a material way to follow the lives of both Lindsay and Sylvia, both separately and where they coincide in South Africa and onwards together to Melbourne. While this is ultimately a love story, it plays out through the collection against the backdrop of apartheid South Africa, sixties London and an increasingly multicultural Australia.

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