# 39453

Photographer unknown.

Two views of the Diamond Creek gold mine, near Melbourne, mid 1870s.

$1,500.00 AUD

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I. Albumen print photograph, 195 x 260 mm, laid down recto of a 19th-century album page of thin card; fully contemporary manuscript caption in ink to the mount: ‘View of Diamond Creek Gold Mine, near Melbourne’; the print as some minor fading at the edges but otherwise is in very good condition, the excellent clarity revealing a great amount of detail.

The first view shows miners at Diamond Creek gold mine posed outside the poppet head (at right) and the boiler house (at left).

II. Albumen print photograph, 177 x 200 mm, laid down verso of the same album page, and with an identically worded caption in the same hand; the print has a chip at top right corner and a couple of scratches in the upper section, but – like the first print – it is a very sharp image.

The second view was taken much closer to the poppet head, and shows a large group of around 40 miners assembled to have their picture taken.

Gold was first discovered at Diamond Creek, about 23 km northeast of Melbourne, in 1863. By the 1870s the Union Gold Mine, pictured in this pair of rare photographs, was fully operational. However, from around 1875 – the approximate date of these photographs, based on the miners’ dress – production started to gradually slow. The mine was closed in 1908.

Trove locates no other examples of these historically significant photographs in Australian public collections.