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  • Our railway and transport collection is growing all the time, and soon members will have access to the library of the Australian Railway Historical Society as well.

    Our collection is extensive in its own right. Everything from histories of specific lines, to more general company histories, to history of bus lines and car manufacturers.
    So whether you’re simply a railways and transport fan, or you’re researching a location, the PMI’s railway and transport collection can help.

    Image: © Steven Haby Collection

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  • The core of the PMI’s collection is its selection of books on individual towns in Victoria and wider Australia. We hold books on the vast majority of towns in Victoria and a growing collection of books in interstate towns. Histories of towns and institutions within towns, such as churches and schools, not only give an excellent impression of what the town was like, they also often include information on the townspeople and institutions.  The PMI is the only institution that is actively collecting these resources to ensure that the history of Victoria and interstate towns are preserved.


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  • Did you know the PMI Victorian History Library has a Blog?

    This blog has monthly Plotting History segments which highlight how members use the library and give a fascinating insight into their research. We have everything from professional historians, to fiction writers, to architects and family historians. It promises to be a panoply of the past!

    We also post member and staff book reviews.

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  • Do you follow us on our Facebook or Twitter page?

    We regularly share what’s happening around the library along with other fun and interesting history related information.

    Facebook | Twitter 

    Don’t forget to hit ‘Follow’ 🙂

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  • The PMI Library has more than 30,000 books for loan and a professional information service for our members, we provide a central resource for research into the history of Victoria.  We hold many titles that are unavailable elsewhere.  It is the only lending collection of its kind in Australia that is available for loan to the general public.

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  • Electronic databases are often overlooked, and the PMI’s collection can provide a myriad of information.

    They range from directories like the Sands and McDougall’s directories which cover addresses in first Melbourne and then Victoria, to hospital indexes, to registries for example cemetery burial registries from a wide variety of Victorian cemeteries, to gazettes for example the police gazette, which covers all sorts of ways that people came into contact with the law. These are just examples of some of these sorts of resources and they can be invaluable as they can give you firsthand primary information.

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Latest News

Bargain Book Day Image


Jun 18

Bargain Book Day

Bargain Book Day Saturday 14 July - 10:30an-3:00pm The Friends of the PMI Library are holding a Bargain Book Day....
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Short Story News Item Image


Jun 18

2018 Short Story Competition: Winner Announced

 2018 Short Story Competition: Flash Fiction - Winner Announced We are pleased to announce the winner of our inaugural 2018...
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Jun 18

Entrance blocked – PMI Victorian History Library

Entrance blocked - PMI Victorian History Library UPDATE 26 June: Access to the entrance is now free of obstruction. If...
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The PMI Library is a community owned and run library specialising in the history of Victoria, Australia.

We have over 30,000 books for loan and a professional information service for our members. We provide a central resource for research into the history of Victoria.

Joining is easy, affordable and open to all.

The PMI is also the home of special collections of the Mechanics’ Institutes of Victoria, the Cinema & Theatre Historical Society and the Australian Railway Historical Society (Vic.).

Opening Hours

Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri: 9.30am-4.30pm
Thu: 9.30am-7.00pm

Except for Victorian public holidays and the Christmas-New Year period.

T: 03 9510 3393 or email us here