Families come in all shapes and sizes and Illawarra families are no different.
Wollongong City Libraries’ latest photographic exhibition, Illawarra Families, celebrates families across the generations and gives a fascinating insight into how they’ve worked and played.
It includes formal studio photographs of people in their finest frills and hats at parties and weddings, alongside informal snaps taken in the backyard.
The exhibition celebrates History Week (3 to 10 September) and Hilary Powell from the Library’s Local Studies Collection says it’s just one resource available to all residents who want to learn more about their family history or their local suburb.
“Our resources are all linked so you might start with an online catalogue search for a name or place, and you’ll find photos in our Illawarra Images collection and then articles in local newspapers, books or even videos,” she says.
The Local Studies Collections has an extensive range of history resources, including Illawarra Stories, an oral history project capturing people’s recollections of life in the Illawarra. The project aims to document the social and cultural history of the region through the voices of local residents and visitors using recordings of interviews facilitated by library staff and volunteers.
Illawarra Remembers contains profiles of World War I service men and women from the Illawarra, while the Your Suburb collection offers a wealth of information, including early residents, timelines, significant buildings and the local environment.
The Illawarra Families exhibition is on display at Wollongong Library until the end of the month and online.
About 100 events will be staged throughout NSW during History Week, including online forums and discussions – check the NSW History Council website for information.
If you’d like to share stories about any of the families pictured, we’d love to hear from you at [email protected].