Victorians are invited to explore two very diverse topics in our history with a new generation of emerging historians, as the Royal Historical Society of Victoria together with the Professional Historians Association (Victoria) present their Annual New Historians Evening.


To be held on Tuesday 19 July at 5.45pm, new historian Emma Gleadhill will explore the role that Grand Tour souvenirs played for late 18th century female British tourists. She will be joined by Volkhard Wehner who will discuss the effects of the Franco-Prussian War on Victoria’s German community.


“The Grand Tour was the traditional trip of Europe undertaken by predominantly upper-class European men of wealth,” explained Emma.


“My talk will challenge the homogenous masculine image of the Grand Tour by exploring how two women - Lady Elizabeth Holland and Lady Anna Miller - used their souvenirs to lay claim to the Tour’s cultural capital and improve their social standing.


“I’ll argue that their enlistment of their souvenirs to fulfil their genteel female role of a hostess and social facilitator actually allowed them to integrate themselves into Britain’s Classical cultural heritage.


“And it was this integration that enabled them to pursue their own literary and scientific interests - despite the period’s restrictive gender norms.”


Guests will then move to a topic closer to home, exploring Victoria’s German community and their reactions to the Franco-Prussian War.


“When news of the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War finally hit Melbourne, Victoria’s small German community were left shocked and deeply concerned, fearing for the safety and welfare of friends and family back in the old country,” explained Volkhard.


“For them it brought back the horror of the Napoleonic wars that had profoundly affected the German lands earlier in the century.


“My talk will examine how the German settler groups scattered across Victoria reacted to the war and how their response contributed to transforming them from politically passive and only loosely interconnected groups into a united, purposeful community.”


About the speakers


Emma Gleadhill is a PhD candidate at Monash University, Melbourne.  Emma's research concerns eighteenth-century British and European history, gender, travel writing, and material culture. She holds a double degree in Visual Arts & Arts, with honours in History from Monash University. In 2010, she received the Ian Turner Prize for best honours thesis in the school of Philosophical, Historical & International Studies in 2010. 

Volkhard Wehner is a doctoral student at the University of Melbourne working on a thesis on the German community of Victoria between 1850 and 1930.  In 2014 he won the Dr Rodney Benjamin Prize for Australian History, University of Melbourne


About the event


Date:                            Tuesday 19 July

Time:                           5.45pm – 7.30pm; refreshments from 5.15pm

Address:                      Royal Historical Society of Victoria

239 A’Beckett Street


Cost:                            $10 non members; free for members of the RHSV and PHA

Enquiries:                    t: (03) 9326 9288   e: [email protected]  w:

About the RHSV


Formed in 1909, the Royal Historical Society of Victoria (RHSV) is committed to collecting, researching and sharing an understanding of the history of Victoria. Housing the most extensive single information resource on the history of Melbourne and Victoria, collections are open Monday to Friday, 10am – 4pm. The RHSV is a community organisation that relies on membership subscriptions. Join today and help promote and preserve the history of Victoria – You can also keep up to date with the past via the RHSV’s Twitter and Facebook page


About the Professional Historians Association (Victoria)


The Professional Historians Association (Victoria) Inc represents a thriving, dynamic community of professional historians who communicate history in diverse ways. The Association promotes the discipline of history as a profession and encourages a high standard of scholarship and practice, in addition to providing professional historians with support and assistance in their day to day work -

July 19, 2016 at 5:45pm - 7:30pm
Royal Historical Society of Victoria
239 A'Beckett St
Melbourne, VIC 3000
Google map and directions
Gerardine Horgan · · 93269288
$10.00 AUD · Purchase tickets

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