Community engagement projects

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A History of Wollongong in 101 Objects

This project presents Wollongong's past in a new way. We have used a digital format and encouraged contributions from long-term residents, keen amateur historians and participants in historical events from Wollongong's past. We use 'objects' as a way of highlighting a particular event, to produce a version of the city's past or to rescue a seemingly forgotten artefact to make an argument.

The Project is a collaboration between professional historians, archivists, librarians and community historians. In particular, Why Documentaries, the award-winning community media group, who understand the importance of collecting local stories ensuring that we capture them before it’s too late and that digital media is an excellent way of presenting community stories. The team has a wealth of experience in the local history of the Illawarra and surrounding areas and is led by Dr Glenn Mitchell, a well known figure locally who has been active in protecting the cultural heritage of the Illawarra for well over two decades, serving on the city’s Art Gallery Board. Dr Henry Lee jointly leads the Project and brings a wealth of knowledge from working closely with local historians and authorities since his early days studying for his PhD in History. Dr Lee has lectured at UOW in History and Politics and is currently the Academic Program Manager at UOW College.

The editors, Dr Henry Lee, Dr Glenn Mitchell and Ms Josie Stuart, have taken a broad view of what constitutes an object. Sometimes it is a small physical artefact. Sometimes it can be a physical space such as 'missing' gravesite as in the case of Giovanni Pasotti. It can even be a sound - the rarely heard air raid siren that was heard on some occasions across Wollongong during the Second World War. This is a new history of Wollongong and the objects we believe make for not only interesting viewing in their own right but they make a coherent story about Wollongong's past. We hope you enjoy the objects we have selected.
 

Last reviewed: 31 August, 2017