92/1335 Medallion plaque, framed, Melbourne Intercolonial Exhibition 1866-67, copper / cedar / glass, designed by Charles Summers / made by W Calvert, Victoria, Australia, c. 1866
This medallion was awarded to G H Elliot for an Honourable Mention for Animal Products from Tasmania including furs of possums, Thylacine (now believed extinct), buck skins, rugs, kangaroo kid and leather.
The Melbourne Intercolonial Exhibition 1866-67 was one of Natural Products and Works of Industries and Arts held in Melbourne from 24/12/1866 to 23/2/1867. The exhibition was open to people of Victoria and other states, country districts, and various institutions. The number of exhibitions for the respective colonies were 2956.
The awarding of Medallions and honorary certificates was entrusted to 39 Juries - consisting of 224 men, whose duty it was to examine exhibits throughout the different classes and sections. The exhibits were divided into six classes and each class had various sections. The classes were:
1. Mineral Products
2. Animal Products
3. Agricultural, Horticultural and Indigenous Vegetable Products
4. Manufacturers and useful Arts
5. Ornamental Arts
The medallion was designed by the noted sculptor Charles Summers and depicts allegorical figures presenting the produce of the colonies. A translation of the lettering around the medal (Latin) is given as:
"They all look different, and yet alike - as sisters would" - in reference to the colonies here represented by female figures.
Inter-colonial and international exhibitions of the late nineteenth century were major forces in shaping Australian material culture. The colonial exhibitions were usually held in preparation for international exhibitions which played a major role in drawing world attention to Australia's resources. Awards such as this recognised innovation in industry and product development, and document the last century's enthusiasm for resource development and use.