Our Collections

Audio Visual Collection

Burnie Regional Museum oral histories.

The Winter Photographic Collection

The Burnie Regional Museum’s Winter Collection comprises more than 300,000 photographic negatives. Three generations of Winter family photographers captured more than 90 years of our region’s history on camera.

The George Rouse Papers

George Rouse (1800-1873) was the Van Diemen’s Land Company’s storekeeper, a pioneer farmer and Burnie’s first justice of the peace and unpaid police magistrate.

Emu Bay Railway Collection

The Emu Bay & Mount Bischoff Railway (which later became the Emu Bay Railway) contributed significantly to the economic prosperity that Burnie enjoyed between 1880 and 1910.

Norton-Smith Papers, Van Diemen’s Land Company, 1875-1892

James W Norton-Smith (1846-1911) was the Van Diemen’s Land Company’s manager from 1869 – 1903. Three years after his appointment to the position, fabulously rich tin deposits were discovered at Mount Bischoff, forty miles south of Burnie. Within a few years Mt Bischoff proved to be the richest tin mine in the world at that time. Other rich mineral deposits on the West Coast were discovered soon after. Norton-Smith was quick to realise the potential benefits of the West Coast mineral boom to Burnie, the nearest deepwater port, and transferred the Van Diemen’s Land Company’s headquarters from Circular Head to Burnie in 1875. He was instrumental in building the wooden-railed horse-drawn tramway from Burnie to Waratah.

APPM Collection

Associated Pulp and Paper Mills Ltd. was Burnie’s first major secondary industry, established in 1938. It utilised the natural timber resources around Burnie to make paper. The impact of the industry on Burnie’s growth and economic development was dramatic. In 1937 Burnie had a population of about 4,000. By 1945 the population had more than doubled to 10,000.

The David Chalk Collection

This remarkable specialist collection was compiled by the late David Chalk. It comprises more than 300 items specifically relating to World War I, including books, clothing, medals, military and personal equipment, interview transcriptions and portraits of the ANZACs.