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  • Visit members of various Historical Societies at the PMI Victorian History Library throughout August.

    Pop in to ask questions or just have a general chat and find out how various Historical Societies can help you in you family history and local history research.

    No bookings required, just drop in anytime throughout the day.

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  • Every family has secrets. The extraordinary ‘ordinary’ stories deserve to be told.

    Researching and finding the best way to tell these stories can be a fascinating journey and the chance to create a valuable resource for your descendants. How do you create an account that is memorable, engaging and not boring?

    This event is run as part of National Family History Month.

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  • From 1730-1830, the Scottish Highlands was in a state of severe social, economic and cultural upheaval. In the 1830s starvation and destitution caused many to migrate to Australia.

    Join author, Jim Donaldson to hear the story of their selection, voyages, settlement and life after their arrival in this country.

    This event is run as part of National Family History Month.

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  • Our oral history collection is small, but deep. It ranges through everything from blacksmithing in Prahran, to the history of 19th century buildings in Melbourne, to personal stories from around Melbourne and Victoria.

    These resources can give an intimate level of knowledge to your research project that would be impossible to find elsewhere. The oral history resources can be found on the library computers under audio recordings.

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  • The PMI is an essential hub for family history research. As well as more general resources, such as the library subscription to, we hold much more specific and unique resources that are vital to family history research. Resources such as: town history, historical society periodicals, family histories, how to genealogy books, databases, indexes, gazettes and directories. These sorts of resources are invaluable for both the macro and the micro view of family history.

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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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MONDAY: 9:30am-4:30pm TUESDAY: 9:30am-4:30pm WEDNESDAY: 9:30am-4:30pm

THURSDAY: 9:30am-7:00pm FRIDAY: 9:30am-4:30pm SATURDAY/SUNDAY: CLOSED

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



Image National Family History Month


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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.).

Contact Us

T: 03 9510 3393 or email us here