State Library Victoria > La Trobe Journal

No 27 April 1981



Taxation Incentives Scheme

Friends of the La Trobe Library will welcome the news that the Commonwealth Government has decided to continue the scheme of taxation incentives for gifts to libraries and other public institutions which had been operating on a trial basis since 1 January 1978.
The State Library of Victoria is certified as a public institution under the conditions of this scheme and is therefore able to accept donations in any of its wide fields of interest. These include not only the Australian books, manuscripts and pictures of the La Trobe Library, but also material related to art, music and the performing arts; works on chess: children's books; maps; and a wide variety of other library material. The Resources Development Librarian would be eager to discuss with any potential donors whether or not material they wish to donate falls within the Library's area of collecting interest and is acceptable to the Library.
Donors of material under the scheme are entitled to a taxation deduction of the full market value of the donation. This is determined by averaging two valuations, which the donor must arrange to have made by valuers approved for the purpose by the Committee on Tax Incentives. A list of approved valuers is held by the Library. A brochure giving detailed information about the scheme is also available from the Library.
The scheme is one which will be of great benefit to the Library, and Friends are asked to help disseminate information about it.

Riley Collection

A little known, but potentially very useful, collection of material in the La Trobe Library is the Riley and Ephemera Collection. Ephemera can be defined as documents of current interest which are not intended to survive the topicality of their message and thus which are in many cases of greater use to historians than material which was compiled with one eye on the future.
The collection began with a series of donations to the Library by Frederick John Riley (1886–1970) a trade union leader and member of the Australian Labor Party and later the Democratic Labor Party. The material donated by Mr. Riley reflected his political and union interests, as well as his activism in such issues as the 1916–1917 anti-conscription campaign.
Since Mr. Riley's original donations were primarily concerned with political and social movements in Victoria it was decided that the Library would continue to collect ephemera in these areas.
The Riley and Ephemera Collection is now a repository for leaflets, handbills, car stickers and posters on diverse subjects which have aroused public interest or indignation. The debates over fluoridation and uranium, the controversy over Australian involvement in the Vietnam war and the dismissal of the Whitlam government are issues well represented in the collection. The largest number of items are from trade unions, political parties and the universities, but a number of smaller Victorian groups are also represented. The collection is often most useful in documenting the concerns of these smaller community and special interest groups.
At present the collection comprises 18 metres of leaflets, dodgers and broadsheets but it is constantly expanding. Staff regularly visit relevant organisations to collect material and donations from interested members of the public are eagerly and gratefully accepted.

Leather Binding Preservative

Friends of the La Trobe Library and others with leather-bound volumes in their book collections will have noticed how leather deteriorates with the passage of time, through handling, or by the rubbing together of books on the shelf. Many realise that polishes and other preparations which may be suitable when used on footwear, furniture or other articles may be injurious if used on books.
The Friends of the La Trobe Library have for some time been marketing a liquid mixture that is specially designed for use on leather bindings. It is made from high-grade animal oils, to a formula designed and tested by people who are expert in the preservation of book leathers. It is prepared by the conservation experts of the State Library of Victoria and is used in the Library.
Jars of this leather dressing may be obtained at the counter of the La Trobe Library reading room, ground floor, La Trobe Street, for $1.20. Instructions accompany each jar. Proceeds are used by the Friends for the acquisition of material for the La Trobe Collection.

Australian Joint Copying Project

Many users of the La Trobe Library seem to be unaware of the wealth of resources to be found in the microfilms of the Australian Joint Copying Project.
The project, jointly administered by the National Library of Australia and the State Library of New South Wales, was set up to microfilm material in the Public Record Office, London, relating to Australia. It was later decided to include other manuscript material in Britain and ultimately Europe as well. To date over 5500 reels of official records from the Public Record Office and over 1300 reels of material in private hands have been filmed. The State Library of Victoria holds copies of all completed films and an eight volume handbook is available as a guide to the project.
Filming in Britain is continuing and to help users of the A.J.C.P. microfilm to keep aware of new acquisitions to the Project, and to help advise others of the richness of the resources contained in it, this Journal will in future regularly have information on microfilm newly received in Australia.