Dr Sebastian Gurciullo is a professional archivist, curator, editor and writer. He has worked at the National Archives of Australia, Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) and University of Melbourne Archives. He has been the editor of the Australian Society of Archivists journal Archives and Manuscripts and PROV's journal Provenance. He is currently a member of the editorial board of Archives and Manuscripts, and the assistant editor of Provenance.

Helen Morgan is a professional archivist and historian, and a writer, editor and hands-off philatelist. She spent 20 years working as research data manager and exhibition designer on the Australian Women’s Register, focused on the transfer of knowledge between researchers, memory institutions and the community. Her research interests include problematising sources and working with biographical, archival and bibliographical data in public domains, especially focusing on the forgotten stories of ordinary people.

The authors are members of the collaborative Melbourne History Workshop in the School of Historical and Philosophical Studies at the University of Melbourne. Professor Andrew J May is an urban social historian whose publications include Melbourne street life (1998), Espresso! Melbourne coffee stories (2001) and The encyclopedia of Melbourne (2005) as director and lead editor.

Fred Cahir is Associate Professor in Aboriginal history at Federation University Australia, Ballarat. Fred’s masters and PhD research focused on local Victorian Aboriginal history. His PhD thesis, ‘Black gold: the role of Aboriginal people on the gold fields of Victoria’, was awarded the Australian Historical Association’s 2008 Alan Martin Award and was subsequently published by Aboriginal History Inc. and ANU Press.

Ian D Clark is Adjunct Professor of Tourism at Federation University Australia. He has a PhD in Aboriginal historical geography from Monash University. He has been researching Victorian Aboriginal history since 1982. He has been the manager of the Brambuk Aboriginal Cultural Centre in Halls Gap and a history research fellow at AIATSIS in Canberra. His areas of interest include Aboriginal history, the history of tourism and placenames.

Barbara Minchinton spent a doctorate’s worth of years delving into Public Record Office Victoria’s archives on land history before working with Melbourne’s urban archaeologists on cesspits and brothels. She has been a volunteer at PROV for over a decade and has yet to work on an uninteresting set of records.

John Burch is a PhD candidate at Federation University Australia, Ballarat. After a career in the public service, he is pursuing his interests in the ecology and human use of the Victorian Mallee. In 2017 he was awarded the Victorian Premier’s History Award for Returning the Kulkyne, an exploration of the history of land use of the Hattah–Kulkyne National Park. He is currently researching Aboriginal land use in the back country.

Virginia Blue is a Master of Urban Cultural Heritage graduate from the University of Melbourne, and an interior designer who focuses on heritage architecture in her practice Blue Fruit, based at the Abbotsford Convent. This article was inspired by her minor research thesis on the life and architectural works of Howard R Lawson. Having ‘accidentally’ bought a Lawson house a few years ago, Virginia was curious as to the thinking of its architect.

Darren Arnott is a Melbourne-based IT security consultant and is the author of No regard for the truth, shortlisted for the Victorian Community History Awards 2020. A former Rowville resident, he has an interest in local history and was intrigued by the story of the Italian prisoners of war. Darren conducted much of his research for this book at the Victorian Archive Centre and workshopped his manuscript as part of Hazel Edward’s ‘Complete your book in a year’ program at Public Record Office Victoria.

Emma Beach majored in historical records management for a bachelor’s degree in social science from the University of Melbourne.

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