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Town Hall, 333 Bay Street, Port Melbourne
Town Hall, 333 Bay Street, Port Melbourne

Returned Sailors’ and Soldiers’ Imperial League of Australia

The Returned Sailors’ and Soldiers’ Imperial League of Australia (RSSILA) the forerunner of today’s Returned and Services League of Australia (RSL) was formed in June 1916.1 In late 1918 the RSSILA decided to establish branches in every suburb of Melbourne. 2 To this end, Cr Owen Sinclair presided over a meeting at the Temperance Hall on Thursday 20 March 1919. Fourteen…

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A Captured German Gun for Port!

An interesting aside has come from a meeting at Port Melbourne's Temperance Hall on Thursday evening, 20 March 1919. Representatives of fourteen local patriotic bodies were meeting to form a committee make arrangements for a Pleasant Sunday Afternoon to raise money to aid the formation of a local branch of the Returned Sailors' and Soldiers' Imperial League of Australia (RSSILA), more…

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School Sports & Physical Training Display – 7 December 1918

Just because the war had ended didn't mean that the work of the local patriotic organisations was finished. In all probability,  preparations for the Combined Schools Sports and Demonstration advertised in the Port Melbourne Standard newspaper on 30 November 1918 would have been well advanced before the Armistice was signed but even so there was good reason to hold the event…

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Margins Memories and Markers

Margins Memories and Markers (2003-2005) is a multi-location public art installation by the City of Port Phillip.  The stories presented at six locations throughout the city were distilled by Julie Shiels from over 400 stories submitted to the project. In Port Melbourne there are five pieces along the foreshore called Port Stories. Four sand-blasted granite plaques laid under the benches near the…

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Welcoming the Returned Soldiers

Some three thousand people gathered along the roads leading from the New Railway Pier (Princes Pier) on the morning of Saturday 23 November 1918 to welcome the first contingent of returned soldiers.1 Barriers along the route restricted the roadway to 12 feet to allow the cars carrying the soldiers to proceed to the city. At the foot of the pier, two strong…

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The End of the War – Friendly Societies’ Dispensary

The Friendly Societies’ Dispensary committee of management met for their monthly meeting on Thursday evening [14 Nov 1918]. The president, Mr S Spielvogel, put forward the following motion "That this meeting of the representatives of Friendly Societies in Port Melbourne have much pleasure in recording its thankfulness to the Almighty for the glorious victory the British nation and Allies have achieved in…

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