Heidelberg Historical Society

The Heidelberg Historical Society Museum is open on Sunday afternoons, from 2PM - 5PM.

All those who enter the Museum must follow Government COVID 19 Health Guildelines.

It's a Busy Time at Heidelberg.

Near Austin Hospital

Saturday 30 July 10.00- 4.00 our Old Heidelberg Court House will be open as part of Open House Melbourne.

Corner of Jika Street and Park Lane, Heidelberg

Of course, members receive free entry every Sunday, but if you have friends who can only visit on a Saturday, this might be a good opportunity to share our beautiful court house with them.

Eaglemont Market Heritage Day Sunday 31 July 10.00 a.m. to 2.00 p.m.

As well as stalls (including Heidelberg Historical Society's), music and food, there will be Red Rattler Rides. Bookings for the Red Rattler can be made at the Red Rattler Rides Website CLICK HERE.

Red Rattler

A Guided Tour of Eaglemont

2PM, Saturday 6th August 2022, and
11AM, Sunday 7th August 2022

Golden Summer

Eaglemont, (which means Mount Eagle), is the attractive suburb next to Heidelberg, where the Heidelberg School painters, including Arthur Streeton, spent much of their time during their famous sojourn in the 1880s and 1890s.

The Historical Society will be conducting a walking tour of the Mount Eagle area on the above days.

In the course of the walk the history of the area, houses and notable residents will be outlined. This will include the Artists of the Heidelberg School, who resided in a cottage in the summers of 1889 and 1890, and the area's later subdivision into residential lots, in which Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin (designers of Canberra) were involved.

The guided walking tour will be conducted by Steven Barlow, a member of the Heidelberg Historical Society and a well-known authority on the history of this famous local area. Steven Barlow has researched and prepared a booklet, a copy of which will be provided to participants.

  • Cost $20 per person, payable in cash on the day.
  • Limited numbers, so please make a reservation.
  • Call the Society on 9455 2130 and leave a message with your name, contact phone number & numbers attending
  • OR
  • Book at the Historical Society's stall at the next Eaglemont Village Market day, Sunday 31 July 2022, 10am to 2pm.
  • The walk will be around 2 hours duration.
The walk commences at the corner of The Eyrie and Summit Drive.

Other places of interest to Heidelberg Historical Society include:

Any area that was ever in a local government area called "Heidelberg". Some places, such as Fairfield and Hurstbridge, have long ceased to share local governments with us, but we still have some historical information about them.
  • Heidelberg Heights
  • Heidelberg West
  • Ivanhoe
  • Eaglemont
  • Rosanna
  • Viewbank
  • Lower Plenty
  • Greensborough
  • Eltham North
  • Bellfield
  • Parts of Bundoora
  • Montmorency
  • Macleod
  • Watsonia
  • Briar Hill
  • Yallambie

Visitors can research information about these and other places at the Museum.

Heidelberg Area
The map shows districts historically related to the name Heidelberg


The First People of this Area

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people who are the Traditional Custodians of this Land. We also pay our respects to the Elders both past and present of the Kulin Nation and extend that respect to all other Indigenous Australians. Our way forward is to look honestly at the past, avoiding the old distorted historical accounts as much as possible.

For example, the subject of the next meeting presentation was built on the lands of the Bunurong or Boon Wurrung people.

Next Speaker Meeting

8PM, Tuesday 9th August 2022
Uniting Church Community Centre, Seddon Street, Ivanhoe.
(Enter from the car park at the rear.)

Speaker: Martin Green,
General Manager at Beleura House in Mornington
Presentation Title: The Story of Beleura

Beleura, Mornington

Beleura's website reports that it first became a pastoral lease in 1840 and the house was built in 1863. It's significance as a fine mansion and its connections with important figures in Victoria's recent history make it a most suitable subject for us.

Our guest speaker, Martin Green, is offering us a brief illustrated history of the home of the Tallis family on the Mornington Peninsular, including the renowned Sir George Tallis.

For the past 3 years Martin Green has been the General Manager at Beleura House in Mornington. Originally he was an ABC TV television producer working on the Arts TV programming including the Between the Lines book program with Caroline Baum.

Later he had various roles in interpretation and exhibitions for various museums including ACMI in Melbourne. He also spent twelve years at the National Trust (Victoria) as the Education and Exhibition/Collections manager at Trust properties including Como, Rippon Lea, Polly Woodside Tallship and the Old Melbourne Gaol.

Heidelberg Historical Society
Museum & Research Centre

Heidelberg Museum

Heidelberg Historical Society Museum is located in the old Heidelberg Courthouse, Jika Street, Heidelberg. Here we have collections of historical records and objects with facilities for researching subjects of interest.

Periodic exhibitions of special interest are also held at the Museum.

Normal opening hours are 2PM-5PM on Sundays, COVID permitting.

During the year, arrangements can generally be made for visits at other times. A small charge is made for entry to the museum, except for Members, who can enter free of charge.

In addition to physical records and objects, museum volunteers have entered large quantities records on computer databases, which are also available to visitors and to members.

Location of Heidelberg Courthouse Museum

Map of Heidelberg Museum location



The Arts & Crafts Movement in Heidelberg.

Truth & Beauty Exhibition

Before the mid-nineteen thirties, it was the conscious or unconscious aim of most people with a little money to live in an ‘artistic’ home—even if they were accountants rather than artists.

The idea that one’s home should be anything other than richly sumptuous and created in the image of the Italian Renaissance was a new one. It was a reaction to the triumph of machine-made products of the Industrial Revolution and to that age itself.

The new mode was for the lady of the house to demonstrate her sensitivity to the beauty of handmade objects and for her husband to pretend that their new house had affinities with a country manor or humble cottage—something older and more ‘picturesque’ than the typical rich man’s mansion.

Napier Waller House

This quaint image was created by the use of plain, dark-stained timber, inside and out. Houses had steep roofs—often with an attic—and tiny leadlight casements set in roughcast walls.

Around the cosy fireplace ingle, copper plates and vases might wink in the light shed by some antique lantern and choice pieces of the potter’s and embroiderer’s craft might be displayed for visitors.

This was the mental image of the ideal home. By the 1920s this essentially English model became influenced by the American Arts & Crafts style and its greatest product: the rugged Californian bungalow. This style was easily adapted for a democratic Australian market and found favour in Heidelberg.

The Shire attracted practitioners of the artistic crafts. Harold Desbrowe-Annear designed and built quite revolutionary houses and demonstrated how Australians ought to live. Mervyn and Christian Waller and Klytie Pate practised their respective arts in just such a cottage set among the gumtrees on the banks of the Darebin Creek. This exhibition features a rare hand-printed book of drawings by Christian Waller and two examples of Arts & Crafts pottery by her niece, Klytie.


From Sunday 6th March 2022

  • Open Sundays 2.00pm-5.00pm & for group bookings
  • Contact Us:
  • 15 Jika Street, Heidelberg 3084
  • (03) 9455 2130
  • (heidelberg.historical.society@gmail.com)