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Latest Launch

Latest Launch

Around a hundred visitors throughout the day enjoyed our latest exhibition, the innovative fusion of art and heritage - 'A palette of pioneer places'. A selection of Isla Patterson's watercolour paintings... more »

A Palette of Pioneer Places - new Exhibition

A Palette of Pioneer Places - new Exhibition

Canberra watercolour artist, Isla Patterson, has painted eight heritage buildings within the Parishes of Jeir, Wallaroo and Ginninderra which will be the centre piece of a new exhibition. This exhibition... more »

CWA gives us a donation

CWA gives us a donation

The Gungahlin Branch of the Country Womens Association recently arrived unannounced (this is not a complaint!) to present us with a generous donation of $250. Treasurer Melissa Lee writes: "CWA Gungahlin... more »

Hatch descendants still making history

Hatch descendants still making history

Helen and Marion Warman are grand-daughters of William Hatch Junior and Elizabeth Bard who took over the running of Rosewood farm when William Hatch (Senior) died in 1907. Good friends of the Centre, they... more »

Gillespie Family Visit

Gillespie Family Visit

We had a visit from the Gillespie family on Wednesday 19th June. Jim and Loretta Gillespie lived in Hall for 10 years in the 60s and 70s. Their 2 children, Christine and Tracy went to Hall School, Tracy... more »

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Centre Opening Times:

A Palette of Pioneer Places - New Exhibition!

Canberra watercolour artist, Isla Patterson, has painted eight heritage buildings within the Parishes of Jeir, Wallaroo and Ginninderra. This exhibition presents the paintings, together with stories of how the land was acquired and the people who lived there. See the event blog and interviews by Living Arts Canberra. There is also a fine article at the RiotAct

The exhibition will be open at a least for the rest of the year.

On the move! - 'Selected Spaces - the settling of Ginninderra'

Please note that this exhibition is now on display at the Cook Community Hub, in cooperation with the Heraldry and Genealogy Society of Canberra (HAGSOC). The exhibition will be launched there on 20 October as part of HAGSOC's 65th Anniversary celebration and remain there until the end of the year.

Learn more about the Shumacks of Springvale, the Kilbys of Lands End, the Southwells of Brooklands and Parkwood, the Camerons and Gribbles of The Glebe, and the Hatches of Rosewood. The stories of these settler families are well illustrated with photographs, maps and plans.

A Tale of Two Villages

The two villages are Ginninderra and Hall. 'Ginin-ginin-derry' was an aboriginal locality first traversed by Europeans in the early 1820's and first settled by them around 1826, at 'Palmerville'. From the 1860's for half a century Ginninderra flourished having its heyday in the 1890's and early years of the new century when there was a church, school, post and telegraph office, blacksmith shop, police station, store, a nursery, and a boot-maker, Farmers Union, School of Arts, cricket club, and the large Ginninderra Estate.

A very productive agricultural area, Ginninderra supplied grain to the Araluen and Majors Creek goldfields, then wool to the Sydney markets. William Davis, then Tom Gribble, Edward Smith, Edmund Rolfe, 'Babe' Curran and others helped build a fine reputation for agriculture.

When Canberra was selected as the site for the capital and the new Federal government began resuming the land, Ginninderra's days were numbered. A site for a new village nearby had been selected in 1882, and Hall was set to grow into the kind of village that Ginninderra never quite became.

Armistice and After

This exhibition, marking the centenary of the end of the Great War, supplements our 2015 exhibition When Hall Answered The Call. That exhibition traced the impact of the conflict on a small bush community. Armistice and After records the participation of the Hall district diggers in the triumphs of 1918 and the euphoria that accompanied the end of hostilities. It also records the difficulties of repatriation and adjustment to civilian life in a world where the promises of peace and prosperity never quite materialized. Finally, it records the veterans' response after it became apparent that they and their children were being asked to do it all again.

Australians are justly proud that as a nation of peace-loving civilians we fought and helped defeat militarism in the two greatest wars the world has yet seen. At the outset the British Empire's comparatively small professional military forces were outnumbered by the enemy - then swamped by their own civilians. The recruits however were largely dependent on the professionals for leadership and instruction in the craft of war. That was particularly important in the naval war and it is instructive to contrast the experiences of the Crace brothers of 'Gungahleen', the one a professional at sea and the other a volunteer on land. They had very different wars - as you can discover in the exhibition.

[See Genevieve Jacob's review article in the RiotACT]

ANZAC Exhibition: 'When Hall Answered the Call'- still open.

'When Hall Answered the Call' commemorates the centenary of ANZAC. Local soldiers' histories are fitted into the context of the Great War. Their stories are displayed together with photographs and memorabilia. A special feature of the exhibition is a re-created setting of a Welcome Home ceremony that was held in the local Kinlyside Hall at the end of the war.

The exhibition pays special attention to the district's several Rolls of Honour, all unofficial local initiatives by civic, school, church and sporting groups. It also features stories from the Hall home front where families gathered together for mutual support in the absence of their menfolk. A local Red Cross Branch was formed where comfort parcels were assembled and socks hand-knitted and sent to the troops.

There is an excellent review of the exhibition by Dr David Stephens at Honest History. The exhibition was previewed by Canberra times writer Ian Warden, who was particularly enchanted by the 'incredible inedible banquet'

View a selection of photos of the exhibition here

There is also now a fine publication derived from the exhibition - authored and edited by the exhibition's curator Allen Mawer. 'When Hall Answered the Call' is available from the Centre.

[Mawer G.A., When Hall Answered the Call, Friends of the Hall School Museum and Heritage Centre, 2015. 40 pp. 45 illustrations. Price $10]

Online displays - 'Rediscovering Ginninderra' and 'Bush Schools of Canberra region'

This site has two major on-line displays. The first tells the stories of more than seventy one-teacher bush schools of the Canberra region. A second display 'Rediscovering Ginninderra' enables exploration of prominent people and places in the Ginninderra district. Comment and contributions warmly welcomed.