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EXHIBITIONS

Australia's Arsenal
- Munitions Industries
in Melbourne's west

Stone Upon A Stone
-Stone wall construction
in Melbourne's west

Hear Our Voices
-Stories by women
in Melbourne's west

STILL HERE
- Aboriginal history
of Melbourne's west


PIPEMAKERS PARK

A Brief History of the Park
- and bluestone buildings

History of the Land Gardens

The Pipestacks
+ Memorial to Bruce Duff

Pioneer Women's Shelter

Park + Environment Projects


OTHER PROJECTS
Charles Grimes Re-enactment
- projects + events
(February 2003)
The Maribyrnong River Walk
- Pol McMahon (April 1999)
Picnic
- contemporary art exhibition
(April 2003)
Student Projects
-Our River
-Black Powder Mill
-Park Characterisation



ANNUAL REPORTS
OUR WORK: PIPEMAKERS PARK

THE PIONEER WOMEN'S SHELTER



The Pioneer Women’s Shelter was comissioned in 1997 by St Albans History Society and was designed and built by Melbourne’s Living Museum of the West on the banks of the Maribyrnong River in Pipemakers Park.

Sales of the popular book ‘Pubs, Punts and Pastures’, a history of pioneer women from Ireland, funded the design and construction of the shelter.

The design of this small building is a collaboration between the authors of this book (and members of St Albans History Society) Joan Carstairs and Maureen Lane and the artist and museum associate, Kerrie Poliness. A shelter was chosen as an appropriate form to commemorate the contribution of Pioneer women, reminicent of the work of Caroline Chisholm towards improving the conditions of trecking from early Melbourne to the gold fields. The scale of the building was determined by "what felt like a comfortable distance to sit across from someone else and have a chat".

The materilas of timber and bluestone reflect local materials; the timber used for construction is recycled from the demolition of adjacent Australian Defence Industries buildings.

The shelter, on the west bank of the Maribyrnong River, (as well as commemorating Irish pioneer women in general) is dedicated to six women in particular whose contribution to society was especially substantial. Many of these women were buried in unmarked graves, their six names are inscribed within on the bluestone plaque produced by Purdy's traditional Stonemasons of Williamstown.

Many people associated with the project and the Museum volunteered their skills and knowlkedge towards the enhancement of the building. For example, Purdy's kindly donated the construction of the bluestone path leading to the shelter, Rodney Purdy crafted an inlaid sandstone shamrock in acknowledgement of his Irish heritage. Some of the members of the Koorie apprentice gardening team (based in Pipemakers Park) became involved in the planting around the building in acknowledgemnet of their Irish ancestors.



The Pioneer Women's Shelter was funded by St Albans History Society

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