See the earliest maps of Melbourne and descriptions of the European settlement of Melbourne in 1835. Discover how the Port Philip District was illegally settled by Batman and Fawkner and then developed into a thriving city.
Learn about the stories of Indigenous Victorians from their earliest contact with European settlers to the struggles of one family in the twentieth century and see key documents created by Aboriginal leaders in their quest for control of their own lives.
Unique Kelly documents including the only existing letter written by Ned himself! Discover clips and a rare advertising poster from one of the world’s first feature films – The Story of the Kelly Gang - and find out why the film was banned in Victoria.
Victoria was at the forefront of the world-wide democratic government movement. Victoria was the first place in the world where voting was carried out in secret and Victorian women led the world in the movement for equal rights.
Sitting at the top end of Collins Street in the Melbourne CBD, the Old Treasury Building is widely regarded as one of the finest 19th century buildings in Australia.
The Old Treasury building was designed by nineteen-year-old architect JJ Clark and built between 1858 and 1862.
What can I see?
The Old Treasury Building hosts the original gold vaults where gold bullion was stored during the gold rush era, as well as rare and historic documents from Public Record Office Victoria highlighting key moments from Victoria’s history.
Come and explore the intriguing gold vaults and you may earn yourself a gold licence!
Open Sunday to Friday (closed every Saturday), Free entry (schools and groups by appointment ONLY)
The Deakin Room currently holds a display of Bendigo, and Victorian Art Pottery, kindly on loan from the Roy Morgan Research Centre Collection.
Bendigo Pottery George Duncan Guthrie (1828-1910), a Scottish Potter, left Scotland to travel to Australia to join the gold rush of the 1850’s. Guthrie arrived penniless, and found no luck in the goldfields; however, he did find a deposit of fine white clay and set up Australia’s most illustrious Pottery works at Huntley, Bendigo in 1857. The Pottery continued business until its closure in 1861. In 1863, Guthrie established a pottery at Epsom, which he later sold in 1882. In 1898 Guthrie entered into a partnership with Mr Edwin J. Hartley and re-purchased the Bendigo Pottery, which he ran almost until his death in 1910.
Victorian Art Pottery William Ferry 1887-1910, worked at the Linthorpe Art Pottery, in Middlesbrough, England, where he worked under the designer Christopher Dresser. William and his elder brother Graham were the principle sculptors for Christopher Dresser and also with Burmantoff’s Pottery, where he later became manager. In 1894 he moved to France and worked at the Niderville Pottery until 1896, when he moved to Australia. By 1898, he leased land in Brunswick, Melbourne, where under the name of Victorian Art Pottery he produced hand finished art wares, often using moulds he had brought from England. He gained a reputation for his beautifully made, colourful and decorative Jardinières, Pedestals and Grotesques. The works closed in 1912.
Behind the Scenes tours
Early Melbourne Paintings & the Executive Council Chamber are part of this exclusive chance to see this private collection of stunning paintings ranging from the 1840s to the 1870s. This collection of wonderful paintings provides an insiders glimpse of the early beginnings of the colony of Melbourne and offers an insight into the life of Melbournians.
Early Melbourne Paintings kindly on loan from the Roy Morgan Research Centre collection.
TOURS: Friday 23 October at 11am Friday 20 November at 11am or by appointment.
Programs relate to the AusVELS, in particular History, Civics and Citizenship, and the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE).
Phone: 03 9651 2233
Old Treasury Building invites teachers and students to visit the fascinating ‘Victorian Archival Treasures’ exhibitions. Students can discover the stories attached to the rare and interesting original documents, maps and photographs from the state archive collection of Public Record Office Victoria (PROV).
Students can also explore the gold vaults and the impact of gold on early Melbourne and the new colony of Victoria. ‘Growing up in Old Treasury’ relates the story of the caretaker John Maynard and his family who lived in the basement of the building from 1916-1928.