Category Archives: Virtual Museum

New Exhibition – Tall Tales, Or True

advertising imageToday, Berowra Living History is proud to announce the launch of our newest exhibition, Tall Tales, Or True. This exhibition focuses on the more unusual stories we have had recounted to us, or come across in research. We have discovered some wonderful images to include, and made a few changes to several of these in order to more accurately reflect the subject matter. Get ready for nudists, UFO’s, and even a perilous escape from a tin of salmon – simply click the image above to discover more!

Of course, if you have a tall tale, or true, which you would like to see added, we would also love to hear from you. Please leave a comment or send us an email!



Happy New Year

Ada Foster and Band 2

We wish you a Happy New Year with this beautiful image from the collection of Von Jones and Family!

This vintage professional photograph shows the late Max Jones’s grandmother, Ada. She is the tall young woman standing third from the right. Ada was an accomplished musician and an enterprising business woman. Forebear of a number of our pioneer Berowra families, Ada can be called the matriarch of Berowra.

Visit our Museum of Berowra : The Mother, The Father and The Matriarch to see more of the story of Ada and early Berowra.


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Heralding The New Virtual Museum Exhibition Berowra: Going Postal

Now on view at:


This exhibition retraces the history of postal services in our suburb of Berowra being initially part of the duties of the railway attendant at Berowra station to a thriving venture. These services expanded to meet the demands of our community and step-by-step the post office developed into a successful business. This exhibition is only the first stage so continue to watch this space and enjoy the virtual journey of Berowra: Going Postal.

Robyn and Rhonda

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Berowra At War In World War One – New Exhibition!

Today, as we approach the centenary of the start of World War One, it is only fitting to launch a new exhibition honouring the story of Berowra during what was once known as The Great War. Berowra and district contributed to the war effort in many ways, not only on the home front, but of course with local men leaving for foreign theatres of war. Several of these men would not return home.

In our new exhibition some of the stories of this period are told. Included is an Honour Roll sharing a little about the men who went off to serve. Many of these men had strong connection to Berowra during the war, but others were from a little further afield in Mount Kuringai. Others still remain something of a mystery and we welcome community input into their identities and how they were connected to Berowra during this period (if at all, we surmise that some may be later residents who were acknowledged, but not connected to the area during the period between 1914 to 1918).

So on this special day, spare a thought for Berowra’s ANZACs and visit Berowra At War.

World war one

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Visit Beautiful Berowra

Intro poster

This week Berowra Living History would like to take the opportunity to point our readers to our newest exhibition. Today, although on a sunny weekend, Berowra Waters can seem flooded with visitors enjoying our stunning views and glorious environment, Berowra is now but a small stop on a tourist drive compared with the tourist heyday of this ‘premier pleasant place’. In its heyday Berowra was a major tourist destination, attracting huge numbers of tourists who came to stay, play and explore. Our newest exhibition Visit Beautiful Berowra tells the history of Berowra as a tourist hub. So make sure you VISIT BEAUTIFUL BEROWRA.

Do you have any memories of Berowra in its tourist heyday? Why not share them with our readers!

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Cause For Celebration!

Cause For Celebration Indeed!

Cause For Celebration Indeed!

This week, Berowra Living History want to share some exciting news with our community. Recently, we were given the honour of being awarded the Owen Nannelli Memorial Award for 2013 by Hornsby Council. This award is for an outstanding contribution to the preservation and promotion of the history of the Berowra region and its people.

The team want to thank you, our community, our participants and our supporters for all that you have given and done for us. Your stories, photos, memorabilia and memories are the things which allow us to build the story of Berowra, and your time, support and friendship are invaluable.

Elissa, Rhonda, Robyn and Ann.

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Who Are These Mysterious Pioneers?


Every community has its pioneers. In Berowra, for many years we have claimed Mary Wall as our most important pioneering figure, but there are others who have played a significant role in creating the village and community.

Our newest exhibition, The Mother, The Father and The Matriarch celebrates three of these pioneering figures (yes, including Mary Wall), bringing the stories of these three formative figures to light. Some of these histories may not be quite what you expect, or indeed what you were taught as a child, but in The Mother, The Father and The Matriarch the team used rigorous research from both primary sources and the families to separate fact from fiction. These are the true stories of these pioneers, as approved by their families.

Click here to visit the exhibition.

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Berowra At War – New Exhibition

Keith Holmes as a school boy. This was the only school photo Keith remembers having taken during the War

Keith Holmes as a school boy. This was the only school photo Keith remembers having taken during the War

This week, with ANZAC Day nearly upon us, I wanted to take the time to make sure our readers had heard about our newest exhibition, Berowra At War. Although Berowra would seem to be far from the dangers of war, hidden away in our rural, bushland surroundings, fear of attack and invasion was very real for residents of Berowra. In our newest exhibition we explore some of the stories of Berowra during wartime, and share some of the recollections of our residents. The exhibition is still under development, so there will be more to come.

I wanted to share with you a taster of the exhibition though:

“We had an air raid shelter just down below the school there. The parents all dug that and we got some heavy rain and it filled up with water so they had to dig another trench right away down the side of the hill to drain the air raid shelter out. We had to practice evacuating the school and down into the trench.” – Keith Holmes

This is just one of the stories which is shared in the exhibition, so head over to The Museum Of Berowra and have a look at Berowra At War!


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Centenary Celebrations – 1912 to 2012

Former students of the old Berowra Public School with family and friends.

Former students of the old Berowra Public School with family and friends.

A great time was had by all on Sunday, 9th December. We celebrated the centenary of what was initially the big classroom and headmaster’s office of the old Berowra Public School and later the main room of Berowra District Hall. We remembered  a hundred years of service to our community.

Merle  Davis is reunited with the Carroll brothers.

Merle Davis is reunited with the Carroll brothers.

This image captures the surprise reunion of Merle Davis with the Carroll brothers who as youngsters had been friends of Merle and Neil Davis’s children. The children had grown up together enjoying many adventures in the Berowra bush.

Joyous  re-connections, storytelling and much laughter epitomized the day.

Shirley Collins and Elaine Foster

Shirley Collins and Elaine Foster

Shirley Collins reminisced about her time as a teacher in the old school in the fifties and Elaine Foster remembered an earlier time when she was a Year Six pupil in our historic building.

A classroom from yesteryear.

A classroom from yesteryear.

The morning of Monday 10th December was for the children of Berowra. Over 400 youngsters walked to the old school and engaged with former students: Peter Huett, Jim Hatfield, Keith Holmes and Neil Davis as they told stories from their school days. These stories were further brought to life by visiting the classroom, seen above, where Elissa and Will, from the team, were on duty. Other learning opportunities were, trying out copperplate writing with former teacher, Shirley Collins or hands on discovery with all the old farm and household objects where Isobel Harrison was in charge.

The body of the hall held further fascinating displays to explore some representing the community groups that have been part of the long history of our District Hall.

Thank you again to all who contributed to the great centenary celebration, especially to The Lions Club of Berowra, without whom the exhibition would not have been possible.

Do visit our virtual museum :  Museum of Berowra for more!


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Virtual Museums and Physical Exhibitions – Celebrations!

Today is the start of a busy and exciting weekend for the Berowra Living History team. Today we launch our Virtual Museum, with two exhibitions ready for exploring and more to come as time goes by. The Museum is accessible at and we look forward to seeing you there.

Over the weekend, the team will also be involved in Celebrations marking the Centenary of the expansion of  the Berowra Old School Hall. We will be mounting an exhibition celebrating the history of the Hall, both as a school and as a centre for community activities and invite you to join us there on Sunday December 9th between 10.30 am and 4.30 pm. The Berowra Lions Club is supporting this display and they will be providing tea, coffee and scones as well as their famous sausage sizzle.

We hope you enjoy the Virtual Exhibitions and look forward to seeing you at the Old School Hall!

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