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2022
Applications closed

About the Fellowship 

Books on bookshelf with spines facing

A selection of books in Mitchell Reading Room Library

For the writing of Australian history from original sources, making use of the resources of the State Library of New South Wales.

The CH Currey Memorial Fellowship was established in 1974 by the Library Council of New South Wales under the terms of the bequest of the late Dr Charles Herbert Currey, a well-known Australian historian who was conscious of the needs of research workers not supported by grants from institutions such as universities. 

Applicants must demonstrate a record of scholarly research and publication. These awards are for applicants who can demonstrate experience as historical and archival researchers. Applicants must accurately describe which Library collections they propose to use in their project. General descriptions such as ‘Mitchell Library pictorial collections’ are not acceptable.

It is expected that CH Currey Memorial Fellows will:

  • Be experienced researchers who are able to demonstrate a successful record of scholarship, publications and research outcomes.
  • Be able to demonstrate a high-level capacity to promote their work through a variety of media channels in collaboration with the State Library.
  • Agree that the fellowship is a priority during their tenure and that a concentrated period of effort, in the one year tenure, will be made to deliver the fellowship.
  • Actively promote the research undertaken during their tenure.
  • Make a presentation about the project at the conclusion of the fellowship.
  • Ensure any publications, outcomes or media coverage which result from the fellowship prominently acknowledge the support of the State Library of NSW and the fellowship.
  • Contribute to State Library of NSW print and online publications.
  • Submit, to the Mitchell Librarian, a four-page summary of their completed project, copies of any research outcomes (presentations and publications) and a bibliography.
  • Acquit their fellowship in a timely manner.
Past Fellows

2021

Dr Alexandra Roginski, for her project: Between Pleasure and Productivity: A history of self-improvement from phrenology to physical culture.

2020

Dr Rebecca Jones, for her project: Drought, Flood, Heat and Dust: Living with Extreme Weather in Arid Australia

2019

Dr Ian Hoskins, for his project:  Re-imagining the Pacific: exploring white Australian identification with its near neighbours 1870-1970.

The project examined the under-appreciated relationship of European Australia with the Pacific, prior to the independence movements of the 1970s.

2018

Dr Emma Christopher, for her project: Sugar and Slavery: an Australian legacy

This project explores how Australian sugar planters inherited Caribbean planter practices and ideologies. A number of Australian sugar planters were funded by Caribbean relatives, this project will utilise the Library’s records to illuminate these relationships. 

2017

Dr Breda Carty, for her project: Changing Social Participation of People with Disabilities in 19th and 20th-Century Australia

This project contributed historical context to contemporary discussions about disability, social inclusion and special education, using the Library's collection to develop an overview of the lives of people with disabilities in nineteenth and twentieth-century Australia. 

2016

Dr Mark Dunn, for his project: Civilised or Savage: the colonial legacy of Robert and Helenus Scott

This project concentrated on the Library's Scott family papers, with particular emphasis on relationships between the brothers and local Aboriginal people, which was not supportive and appallingly violent: a paradox at the heart of much frontier history. 

2015

Dr Gianfranco Cresciani, for his project: Italian Communists in Sydney: their activities, policies and liaison with the Italian and Communist Parties, 1970-1990.

Cresciani’s project examined the Federation of Italian Migrants and Families (FIMF), the Italian Communist Party, and its intersection with agencies such as the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation. The Library holds key papers of the FIMF and this project looked at the history of this organisation, its interaction with local Cold War politics and impact on Sydney cultural life.

2014

Dr Christine Jennett, for her project: “Saving the Gurindji”: the story of the Sydney-based support campaign for the Gurindji peoples struggle for equal pay and land rights 1966-75.

Jennett’s project used the papers of Dr Hannah Middleton and Roderick Williams, held by the Library, who were both, as an anthropologist and as a field worker respectively, involved in the Gurindji Campaign.

2013

Dr Kyle Harvey, for his project: A History of the Australian Anti-Nuclear Movement, 1945-2000.

This project made extensive use of the Library’s substantial archives on this subject to produce a thorough examination of the diverse array of anti-nuclear activity which began to emerge in Australia shortly after the Second World War.

2012

Dr Angela Dunstan, for her project: Celebrity Circuits: the impact and influence of celebrity visitors to nineteenth-century Australia.

This project examined key celebrity visits to Australia between 1852 and 1921. It discussed how the art, literature and celebrity ephemera resulting from such visits to Australia created complex and significant circuits of empire that were central to the development of the international conception of Australia, and colonial Australia’s national identity.

2011

Dr Anne-Maree Whittaker, for her project: The Librarian as Historian: Hugh Wright, CH Bertie and their circle.

2010

Dr Ruth  Standfield, for her project: Protection, Politics and Persistence: The colonial career of William Thomas, 1839-1860.

2009

Dr Virginia Ruth Pullin, for her project: Eugene von Guerard's Sketchbooks: An artist's diary.

2008

Dr Nathan Garvey, for his project: Botany Bay and British Popular Literature, 1780-1840.

Robert Holden, for his project: ANZAC Diaries in the Mitchell Library.

2006/2007

Eileen Chanin, for her project: David Scott Mitchell's Bequest: His collection and the development of Australia's creative spirit.

2005

Dr  Mark Hearn, for his project: The Fin de Siecle Imagination in Australia, 1890-1914.

2004

Dr Lisa Featherstone, for her project: A History of Sexualities in Twentieth-Century Australia.

2003

Jock Given, for his project: A Biography of Ernest Fisk and the AWA Papers.

2002

Dr Sylvia Martin, for her project: A Biography of Ida Leeson, Mitchell Librarian 1932-1946.

2001

Dr Judith Godden, for her project: A Biography of Lucy Osburn: Pioneer of the nursing profession in Australia.

2000

Dr Sue Robinson, for her project: A Biography of Australian Composer Peggy Glanville-Hicks.

1999

Dr Suzanne Rickard, for her project: Connections between Colonial Australia and British India between 1788-1858.

1998

Isadore Wyner, for his project: A History of the New South Wales Branch of the Ship Painters and Dockers Union, 1900-1930.

1997

Dr Barry Hill, for his project: A Literary Biography of TGH Strenhlow.

Dr  Peter Cochrane, for his project: The Rise and Fall of British Australia as a History of British Identity in Australia from the Colonial Period to the Late Twentieth Century.

1996

Jacqueline Kent, for her project: The Work of Beatrice Davis, Chief Editor for Angus & Robertson Publishers for almost Forty Years.

1995

Dr Andrew Leonard Hassam, for his project: Australian Cultural Identity through Letters and Journals Written by Australians visiting Britain in the Nineteenth Century.

1994

Brendan G. O'Keefe, for his project: An Account of the Voyage of an American Ship around Tasmania and up the East Coast of Australia, before the Arrival of the First Fleet.

1993

Audrey Oldfield, for her project: An Examination of the Republican Movement in Australian History.

Ann Moyal, for her project: Scientific Letters of the Nineteenth-Century Geologist the Reverend William Branwhite Clarke.

1992

Dr Jan Todd, for her project: Technology Transfers into Australia in the Late Nineteenth Century.

1991

Margaret Lanagan, for her project: A History of Women Pilots in Australia, from 1912 to the Present Day.

1990

Dr Edward Duyker, for his project: A Biography of the Pacific Explorer Marc-Joseph Marion Dufresne, 1724-1772.

1989

Peter Moore, for his project: A Biography of Robert Torrens, 1780-1864.

1988

Joanna Mendelssohn, for her project: The Relationship between Jack and Norman Lindsay.

Richard Phillip Oswald White, for his project: Home and Other Places: Europe in the Australian imagination.

1987

Susan Hogan, for her project: A Biography of Adela Pankhurst Walsh and Tom Walsh.

1986

Roslyn Maguire, for her project: Nineteenth Century Italian Immigration to New South Wales.

Regine Maja Sainisch, for her project: A Biography of Charles Rasp: The discoverer of silver-lead-zinc deposits at Broken Hill.

Peter Synan, for his project: An Economic and Social History of Nineteenth-Century Gippsland.

1985

Helen Kenny, for the project: A Biography of Major Robert Ross of the Royal Marines, Lieutenant Governor of New South Wales.

Elizabeth M. Plimer with Ellen G.R. Errey, for the project: The Swann Sisters of Elizabeth Farm House.

Sasha Soldatow, for his project: A Biography of Harry Hooton 1908-1961.

1984

John Michael Bennett, for his project: Biographical Lives of the Australian Chief Justices, 1824-1924.

Donald Fifer, for his project: The Political Career of William Charles Wentworth.

Margaret Janice Kociumbas, for her project: A History of Australia, 1788-1860.

1983

Edgar Beale, for his project: Captain Charles Sturt's Exploration, 1844-1846.

Ian H Nicholson, for his project: Tasmanian Shipping 1842: Including a bibliography of ships logs relating to Australia.

Ettie E  Pullman, for her project: Early Settlement of the Port Albert Area of Gippsland.

1982

Associate Prof. David Francis Branagan, for his project: A History of Australian Science: PP King and his influence on Australian science.

Marjorie Morgan with Andrew Lemon for the project: The Wreck of the Immigrant Ship  "Cataraqui" on King Island in 1845.

Beverley Anne Nance, for her project: A History of Aboriginal Australians in Early Melbourne.

1981

C. A. Liston, for her project: A Study of Sir Thomas Brisbane, Governor of New South Wales, 1821-1825.

1980

Frederick Robert Pascoe, for his project: The Structure of the Community in Western Australia's Goldfields, 1892-1934.

Kamoya Peterson, for her project: The History and Politics of the Control of Vermin and Noxious Weeds in Australia, from First Settlement to Present Time.

Marion Ruth Dormer, for her project: A Social and Pictorial History of the Settlement of the Early Squatting Runs.

1979

Dr John Douglas Ritchie, for his project: Towards a Biography of Lachlan Macquarie, 1761-1824.

Dianne Elizabeth Kirkby, for her project: A Biography of Alice Henry: Australian feminist, journalist, social reformer and trade union leader.

John Alfred Maddock, for his project: A History of Road Train Operations in the Outback from the 1930s.

1978

Reverend William Terrence Southerwood, for his project: The Work of RW Wilson, First Bishop of Hobart.

Stephen Glynn Foster, for his project: The Electoral Legislation in the Australian Colonies During the Nineteenth Century.

Eve Buscombe, for her project: Australian Colonial Portraiture.

1977

Audrey Somerville, for her project: A History of the Education of Methodist Clergy in New South Wales.

Donald McDonald, for his project: Mental Health Services in New South Wales, 1788-1900.

Peter Gardner, for his project: A Local History of the Gippsland Region of Victoria.

1976

Dr Neville Hicks, for his project: Timothy Augustine Coghlan.

Captain Brett Hilder, MBE , for his project: The 1606 Voyage of Torres.

Dr Hazel King, for her project: Elizabeth Macarthur and Her Husband and Sons.

1975 (Inaugural)

Keith Arthur Johnson, for his project: A book on the sesqui-centenary of the Wollombi District, 1825-1975

Associate Prof. Winston Gregory McMinn, for his project: The Life and Political Career of George Houston Reid, 1845-1918.

John Michael Bennett, for his project: Australian Legal History and Biography.