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About the Fellowship

D. S. Mitchell, Dec 19th 1864 / Dalton's Royal Photographic Gallery, Sydney [carte de visite], 1864
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The David Scott Mitchell Fellowship encourages and supports the use of the State Library of NSW collections for the study and research of Australian history. The David Scott Mitchell Fellowship was established in 2007 through the generous benefaction of Edward John Merewether, great-great-nephew of David Scott Mitchell. The Fellowship celebrates the centenary year of Mitchell’s bequest of his collection to the Library.

The principal purpose of the David Scott Mitchell Fellowship is to encourage and support the use of the Library's collections for the study and research of Australian history in writing and publication amongst scholars, researchers and the wider community, including internationally. 

It is expected that David Scott Mitchell Fellows will:

  • Be experienced researchers who are able to demonstrate a successful record of scholarship, publications and research outcomes.
  • Be able to demonstrate a high-level capacity to promote their work through a variety of media channels in collaboration with the State Library.
  • Agree that the fellowship is a priority during their tenure and that a concentrated period of effort, in the one year tenure, will be made to deliver the fellowship.
  • Actively promote the research undertaken during their tenure.
  • Make a presentation about the project at the conclusion of the fellowship.
  • Ensure any publications, outcomes or media coverage which result from the fellowship prominently acknowledge the support of the State Library of NSW and the fellowship.
  • Contribute to State Library of NSW print and online publications.
  • Submit, to the Mitchell Librarian, a four-page summary of their completed project, copies of any research outcomes (presentations and publications) and a bibliography.
  • Acquit their fellowship in a timely manner.


Past Fellows


Dr Nicholas Hoare, for his project: Australia’s Voice of the Pacific: A history of the Pacific Islands Monthly, 1930–2000. 


Dr Effie Karageorgos, for her project: Anti-Vietnam War Protest in New South Wales. 


Dr Shuxia Chen, for her project: Women and 1930s–1940s Sino-Australian Relations


Matthew Devine, for his project: Ted Farmer: Architect, facilitator, bureaucrat.


Dr Jarrod Hore, for his project: Grounding Colonial Science: William Branwhite Clarke in the field 1839–78.


Dr Isobelle Barrett Meyering, for her project: Pipi Storm Theatre Company: A cultural history of children’s rights.

The project will examine the growth of the idea of children’s rights from the 1970s through the Library’s extensive collections of papers of the Pipi Storm Theatre, which delivered theatre across NSW schools and welfare institutions.


Dr James Keating, for his project: Linda Littlejohn: Australia’s forgotten feminist.

Dr Keating’s project will explore the life of an influential and very active mid-war Australian feminist, whose story has now largely been forgotten. 


Associate Professor Robert Crawford, for his project: Probing the Consumer’s Mind: The Ashby Research Service and the post-war Australian market


Associate Professor Russell McGregor, for his project: Bush Naturalist: A life of Alec Chisholm.

Alec Chisholm (1890-1977) was a prolific writer on natural history, especially ornithology, and was also an influential editor, literary critic and historian of the mid-twentieth century.


Dr Ruth Thurstan, for her project: Development, Industrialisation and Recreation: An environmental history of Australian east coast fisheries.

This project highlighted interactions between humans and the marine environment, and concentrates on a period of great significance in global fisheries, particularly as the mechanisation of the industry at this time had a major impact on fish stocks.


Dr Gabriela Zabala, for her project: Left, Radical & Unacknowledged: The unpublished New Theatre plays of Jim Crawford.

This project looked at the work of Jim Crawford, a prolific playwright associated with the New Theatre who wrote up to twenty plays about the situation of the working classes, and the impact of the White Australia policy on Indigenous people and capitalism.


Dr Toby Martin, for his project: Performing Aboriginality: Tourism to Aboriginal missions, reserves and settlements from the 1880s to the 1950s.

Martin’s project uncovered and illuminated the late nineteenth to mid-twentieth-century visits by tourists to Aboriginal reserves to experience coroborees, hear gum leaf bands, buy boomerangs and similar activities. Tourism to these settlements offered a rare possibility of black/white contact and exchange.


Dr Gareth Knapman, for his project: Conciliating Exchanges: Mapping the politics of trading between Aboriginal peoples and settlers in nineteenth-century South-Eastern Australia.

The project looked at Aboriginal agency through the production of objects for sale within nineteenth-century intellectual networks. Aboriginal Agency argues that Aboriginal people had a voice and were trying to present that voice through material culture. This voice however was lost through the politics of colonial intellectual networks.


Dr Andy Kaladelfos, for his project: Citizens of Mercy: Bushrangers, punishment and public opinion in colonial New South Wales.


Dr Craig Munro, for his project: A Biography of Influential Editor, Publisher and Literary Journalist: AG Stephens

2009 (Inaugural)

Dr Michael Davis, for his project: A History of European Representations