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  • What Lies Beneath: Archaeological investigations of the Cato Street Carpark, Prahran | Thursday 28 June, 7PM

    In this year’s 2018 Bruce Turner Presentation, Dr Michelle Negus Cleary will will provide an update on the archaeological results from both the first and second stage of the Cato Street Archaeological Investigation.

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  • The Story of J.P. Quaine with Prof. Wallace Kirsop | Thursday 5 July, 7PM

    J.P. Quaine opened a secondhand and antiquarian bookshop in Prahran during the First World War and continued in business for the next four decades.

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  • Councils across Victoria release heritage studies about localities under their purview.

    We collect these studies and store them on the library computers for easy access.

    Heritage studies can be a fantastic primary source for any type of locality based research, as they can give the minute small scale detail that is just not available in larger more general works. Heritage studies can be found in the heritage studies folder on the library computers

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  • We collect and index journals from all historical societies in Victoria. Indexing means that every relevant historical article in these journals is fully searchable on our catalogue. These journals cover an astounding array of minutia from their communities’ histories and there is nowhere else this sort of information is available. It is the small scale of history that is not covered in books and in more general resources.

    We also hold general interstate journals from society’s such as the Royal Historical Society of Victoria, the Genealogy Society’s, the Art Deco Society, the Journal of Australian Ephemera and Newsrail.

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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


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May 18

Clunes Booktown Festival 2018

Clunes Booktown Festival 2018 We’re heading to the Clunes Booktown Festival 5-6 May 2018 this weekend and we’re bringing a van load of...
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ANZAC Day News Item Image

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Apr 18

ANZAC DAY Public Holiday

ANZAC DAY Public Holiday The PMI Victorian History Library will be closed for the ANZAC Day Public Holiday on Wednesday...
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Apr 18

Notice of 2018 Annual General Meeting

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING of the Prahran Mechanics’ Institute. 1.00pm, Saturday 12 May 2018 AGENDA Apologies. Confirmation of Minutes of AGM...
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Welcome!

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