From Our Collection

Wax Doll


This wax doll was owned by Elizabeth Annie Robshaw.
It has a waxed head and legs with composition arms and hands. The cotton body has sawdust filling.
The doll is dressed in cotton lace fabric. There are three cotton petticoats. One of lace and pintucks and two plain petticoats. There are cotton drawers.
The doll has wax legs with moulded boots and composition arms. The thumb is missing on the left hand. The doll wears a ginger wig. There are holes in the ears for earrings, but the earrings are missing.
There are no markings on the doll.
The doll’s face and shoulder plate are badly damaged.
1870 – 1890

Elizabeth Annie Robshaw 1872 – 1955
Elizabeth was born 19 September 1872 at Mitchell Street Bendigo.
Her father John Robshaw was a printer and stationer in a shop on a site in Mitchell Street.
Elizabeth owned a Bookshop and Library in the Bendigo Arcade after her father’s business was sold in 1905.

Early French Boudoir doll

Composite face legs and arms. Painted features. Hair – possibly real, dark brown colour. Doll dressed in royal purple gown. Long sleeves with lace cuff. Faux fur collar around V shaped neckline at front and squared collar at back. Lace trim across front of neckline. Faux fur trim across centre front and centre back at hemline.
Three underskirts.
1. Mauve satin with darker mauve frill around hem line.
2. Stiffened white fabric.
3. White drawers with lace trim on lower legs.
Painted on shoes in gold paint.
Boudoir dolls are dolls that are made to sit on beds and sofas as decorations rather than being used for play. They are also called bed dolls, flapper dolls, and French dolls.
Although dolls that sit on beds are still being made today, the classic vintage boudoir dolls were made from the 1920s through the 1940s. Some of the earliest dolls, made even earlier than 1920 in some cases, were made in France. Many of the dolls were made in an art deco style.

Ella Nicholls Wedding Dress

Wedding dress worn by Ella Nicholls at her marriage to James Mitchell on 12.1.1915.
James Mitchell is listed as a shearing contractor on electoral rolls
1919 at 11 Wellington St Geelong
1927 – 1967 in Bendigo
First at 49 Neale St (now demolished and part of Kennington Oval precinct)
Then at 96 Neale St. Kennington
Ella Celia Mitchell died in 1970 and was buried on 17.3.1970 at Bendigo Cemetery Lawn 2.
Her father was John Nicholls and her mother Annie Kane.
James Mitchell was buried on 1.11.1974 at Bendigo Cemetery Lawn 2


Sealing set

The “Georgian” sealing set in a blue leather covered box with a brass clasp. Contents include a crucible, wax seals, matches and a spirit burner. The inside of the lid is lined with blue silk. Gold lettering reads “Patent No. 30394/10 Third Hand Patents Ltd 881 City Rd E.C. Donated by Wiegard 6.11.69”.

Clay seals were used in the earliest known civilizations. Wax seals became prominent in the Middles Ages and were unique to their owners.

Wooden butter mould

Wooden butter mould with dove tailed joints on corners and a hole in the base. The butter box was used to mould the butter into a traditional block shape. They needed to be kept scrupulously clean and the inside thoroughly wetted before pressing the butter into the mould.

Buddy bag belonging to Charles Martin

Name and address printed inside the bag.
C Martin “Fermanagh” Pompapiel
33 Keck St Bendigo
Edward MARTIN was born on 17 March 1857 at Corard, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, the son of Patrick MARTIN and Rose Anne BLEAKLEY. The family came to Australia where Patrick MARTIN appears to have died at Korong Vale in 1871 aged 73. Rose Anne MARTIN died at Korong Vale on 22 December 1898 aged 68.

Edward MARTIN married Honora Frances O’TOOLE in Victoria in 1890 and spent his life farming in Victoria including many years at Pompapiel. Several records refer to them living at ‘Fermanagh’ Pompapiel. Edward MARTIN died on 10 December 1940 at Pompapiel aged 83 and was buried at Inglewood Cemetery.

Charles MARTIN was born on 25 April 1893 at Korong Vale, Victoria the second son of Edward MARTIN and Honora Frances O’TOOLE.

Charles MARTIN married Mary Constance MALONE at Inglewood in 1918.
Electoral records show them living in Mitiamo in 1949 and by 1958 when Charles MARTIN was 65 years old, they were living at 33 Keck Street Bendigo. They were still in Keck Street in 1974 when Mary Constance MARTIN died on 12 December 1974 aged 85.

Charles MARTIN died in Bendigo on 8 June 1989 aged 96. At the time of his death he was living in Golden Square. Both Charles and Mary are buried in Bendigo Cemetery, Lawn 2, Grave no 44405.

John Henry Sargood’s top hat

Top hat belonging to John Henry SARGOOD donated by his granddaughter in 2009.

Information provided at time of donation. No date available.
John Henry Sargood was born in Islington, Berkshire, England on 11. October 1849.
He came to Euroa as a 7-year-old in 1856 and settled at Gooram.
He returned to England at some stage and married Jane McLean in London in November 1885.
Sargood was overseer and Manager on stations before taking up the position as Manager at Yarraberb, Raywood. The Wilson Bros from Scotland owned the property. Owners of land who lived overseas, by law had to spend 3 months every 2 to 3 years on their property.
John Sargood was a J P and took an active interest in the area.
He was President of the Marong Shire in 1902 and 1909.
Sargood had a family of three sons and two daughters – Fred, Harold, Hugh, Grace and Eva. Hugh and Eva were born in Bendigo.

John Henry Sargood died on 5 December 1913 aged 64 years. He is buried at Raywood Cemetery with his wife and two sons. (Marker L23).

Wooden Butter Pats

Two wooden butter pats from about 1880. Donated by Sister Kerrins of Don Street Bendigo. Sister Kerrins ran a private hospital in Bendigo for many years.
In the 19th century butter pats were used to shape butter into bricks ready for sale or use. Excess moisture is pressed out of the butter before the butter maker used the butter pats to shape the butter. One side of the bats are serrated to squeeze out moisture. The butter was then stamped with a design or pattern to identify the individual farms or dairies.

1827 Wooden Pastry Wheel

Small wooden pastry wheel for making patterns on butter or shortbread pastry. Dated 1827 with initials IY.

Donated by Elizabeth Robshaw of Don Street Bendigo.
The pastry wheel could have been handed down to Elizabeth either from her mother Elizabeth Young or her aunt Charlotte Young. The mother of Elizabeth and Charlotte was Frances Swan, wife of Joseph Young, a farmer from Clinch, Northumberland. (Argus 25 March 1862)
An alternative possibility is that the pastry wheel was made for Robert Young’s grandmother Isabella Young by her husband Robert Young, who came from Falkirk in Scotland.
Robert Young purchased the Printing and Stationery shop in Mitchell street when it was sold by Elizabeth Robshaw in 1905.

Brass music box

Brass music box with wooden lining, hinged lid with raised flower design, four small bun feet and a winder on the base. Swiss music box movement. There is a partial sticker on the base for Prescott and Dawe Jewellers of Bendigo. Prescott and Dawe were on the corner of Mitchell and Hargreaves Streets.

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