Small Museums Conference

About the event

Small Museums Conference Roma 2018

Date: 26 – 28 October 2018
Roma Auditorium

The theme for the 2018 Conference was Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow. The conference inspired communities to share and preserve local history from yesterday, today and tomorrow. A blend of plenary sessions and hands-on workshops stimulated ideas for staff and volunteers to share and put into practice.

Keynote speaker

The keynote speaker for the conference was Liza Dale-Hallett, Senior Curator, Sustainable Futures, at Museums Victoria. She specialises in the history of rural Victoria, with a particular interest in contemporary issues of sustainability, in particular, the significant contribution of women in agriculture and rural communities. Much of her work has been focused on bridging the gaps between city and country, consumers and producers.

Liza is the lead curator in the national Invisible Farmer project – the largest ever study of Australian women on the land. This project is a creative partnership between rural communities, academics, government and cultural organisations. It aims to create new histories of rural Australia, and showcase the diverse, innovative and vital contribution of women to agriculture & rural Australia.

Liza presented Museums – Leading from the past to the future and shared her experience as a museum curator and her work in uncovering farm women’s stories for the Invisible Farmer Project. She talked about the leading role of communities and museums in rewriting Australian rural history and giving greater visibility to women in agriculture.

Small museums across Australia have an important role in documenting our lives and preserving our stories. Liza will talk about a variety of ways museums are able to participate in this national project. 

“Making farm women’s stories more visible is not just about the past; it’s essential to our future.” – Liza Dale-Hallett. 

Find out more about the project, visit the Invisible Farmer website.

Program snapshot

Friday 26 October
Registration commenced at 7.30am with the program officially commencing at 8.30am. The first day included keynote by Liza Dale-Hallett and concluded with a networking event being held at the Surat Cobb & Co Store Museum.

Saturday 27 October
Delegates began the day with Roma’s Historic Walk and a tour of the windows of St Paul’s Anglican Church. Registration commenced at 8.45am with the program officially commencing at 9.10am and the conference sessions ended at 4.50pm. The conference dinner was held in Roma at the Big Rig. From 6.30pm entrees were served while diners experienced the Oil Patch Museum, with a sit down dinner held on the Ring Road at the Big Rig.

Sunday 28 October
Delegated hopped on the bus at 9am in Roma and enjoyed the scenery as they travelled west to Mitchell. On arrival at Mitchell they experienced the fabulous high tea at the Mitchell Spa. Following this, they took a stoll through the Booringa Heritage Museum. The bus then delivered them to the Yumba Historical Preservation, where they enjoyed lunch before returning to Roma by 2.30pm.


Small Museums Conference Program

Liza Dale-Hallett, Senior Curator, Sustainable Futures, Lead Curator, Invisible Farmer Project, Museums Victoria
Museums – Leading from the Past to the Future
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Fiona Hayward, Kilburnie Homestead, Banana Shire
Diving into Digitisation
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Lydia Egunnike, Museum Development Officer for Southern Inland Queensland, Queensland Museum Network
Preserving Heritage Collections Workshop
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Download workshop reading list

Nick McDougall, Greenmount Historical Homestead
Greenmount Historical Homestead: Opening Pandora’s Box
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Kylie Bourne, President, Miles Historical Village Museum
What War Meant to Miles – Heroes, Hardships and Heartfelt Stories Project
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Christine Ianna, Museum Consultant and Conservator
Digitising Workshop
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Dr Nerida Ellerton, The Australian Education Heritage Museum
Building the Future by Understanding the Past: The Australian Education Heritage Museum
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Dr Mike Epworth, Chairmaker, Researcher
Sweet Home Wallumbilla
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Maranoa Regional Council logo
Museums & Galleries Queensland logo

Hosted by Maranoa Regional Council and supported by Museums & Galleries Queensland, the conference covered inspirational and practical topics for small museum and local historical society workers and volunteers.


Training & Professional Development team

Museums & Galleries Queensland

Review Site
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