Melbourne’s His­tory on Show

Where Melbourne - - Where Now -

“Melbourne: Foun­da­tions of a City” on at Old Trea­sury Build­ing tells the story of the city’s as­ton­ish­ing growth. Panoramic pic­tures of the city from the 1840s to 1900 trace the ex­tra­or­di­nary emer­gence of a city that was known by the 1880s as the ‘Queen City of the South’, or, to the great de­light of its ci­ti­zens, as ‘Mar­vel­lous Melbourne’. But there was a down­side and de­spite its glit­ter­ing out­ward ap­pear­ances, Melbourne was also a dan­ger­ous city. The drains stank, the wa­ter was pol­luted and ty­phoid fever was rife. Un­til a deep sew­er­age sys­tem was fi­nally com­pleted in 1898, ‘Mar­vel­lous Melbourne’ was also pop­u­larly known as ‘Mar­vel­lous Smell­bourne’. How­ever, as this ex­hi­bi­tion shows, de­spite all that, Melbourne was an amaz­ing city. On­go­ing, Sun–fri 10am–4pm, Old Trea­sury Build­ing, 20 Spring Street, Melbourne. 9651 2233.

Robert Rus­sell, “Melbourne from the Falls”, 1854. Cour­tesy State Li­brary Vic­to­ria.

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