Treasures from the Shire Archives

image of a sub division plan book in the Shire Archive collection
Image of a Moorooduc Parish Plan showing the Mornington Foreshore Reserve

Moorooduc Parish Plan, highlighting the Foreshore Reserve.  Shire Archive Collection

Local Government begins on the Mornington Peninsula

Shire Archive Flag Collection

We have a range of objects and memorabilia in the Archive, including our collection of Flags for former Shires. The flags shown here represent three former Shires of the Mornington Peninsula. The images on these flags embody the message each Shire wished to convey about their region. These are impressive, very large artifacts, and we are fortunate to be able to present them here through the use of drone photography supplied by our team’s talented Digitising Officer.

Shire of Mornington Flag
Image of the hand sewn flag of the Shire of Mornington showing a ship logo
Shire of Flinders Flag
Hand sewn flag depicting the former Shire of Flinders showing representations of crops, livestock, fruit and see animals
Shire of Hastings Flag
Shire of Hastings Flag. Hand - sewn fabric with embroidered stitching displaying symbols for the Shire's identity; Livestock, fruit industry, fishing and boats.

Early Local Government Records

Community Life

Information about early community life in our Region can be found in an array of records in the Shire Archives.  These include records for local cemeteries, letters from residents written to the Shires and press clippings to name a few.

Tyabb Cemetery Register page 1

Tyabb register page 2

War Time Records

Local Government Records provide insight into how conflicts impacted the community on the home front.  The Shire Archives contain records from the period of both the First and Second World Wars including letters, Repatriation Committee Files and information about community support.

War Creates Career Opportunities for Women

Miss Ula Robinson was the Shire Secretary for the former Shire of Mornington between 1917 and 1919 during the First World War.  Many women entered the workforce in response to labour shortages caused by men enlisting to fight. Ula was highly respected in her field. When she was appointed to the Shire of Mornington position, she had already worked as the acting Shire Secretary in the Gippsland district of Traralgon since March 1914.  She replaced Thomas Nihill, who enlisted in 1917 and returned to the role in late 1919.


Miss Ula Robinson Shire of Mornington Secretary 1917-1919. Shire Archive Collection.
Colour photograph of a smiling Miss Ula Robinson circa 1918. She is wearing a long skirt and blouse with a tie, leather belt and lace up boots.
Certificate of Appreciation presented to Miss Ula Robinson on her departure, July 1919. Shire Archive Collection.
Certificate presented to Ula Robinson by the Shire of Mornington

A Local Mother’s Concerns about Air Raid Shelters

Community concerns during War time are raised in many of the letters that are held in the Archive.  This letter written during the Second World War is from a local mother, anxious about the safety of Mornington State School children.  She demands to know what the Shire is doing about the construction of Air Raid Shelters.  Mrs Ritche writes ‘this is no time to be talking it is action that is wanted and quickly’Fear of enemy attack and invasion within the community is palpable.  We are fortunate to have both the original letter and the Shire’s response, providing an interesting window into the handling of public relations in the 1940s.


Colour photograph of Mornington Peninsula Bathing Boxes

Bathing Boxes Mount Eliza

Bathing Box Register

Shire Records for Everyday Utilities

More about this register

More about this register

What’s a W C?


Public Libraries

Former Shire of Hastings Office, Marine Parade Hastings


At the end of the First World War in 1918, the world was faced with an Influenza pandemic, which they called the Pneumonic Influenza.  Its less preferred name was ‘Spanish Influenza’.  In Australia, the government issued warnings about how local government might respond to protect the community.  By early 1919, it was necessary for those measures to be implemented in Victoria.  We have many original sources in our Shire Archives that demonstrate how the restrictions impacted on life at the Council and in the local community.

Handwritten letter from a resident to the Shire complaining about the temporary hospital