From the Archives: Take a virtual Museum tour

Archivist Ms Bridget Minatel explains how access to the Archives Museum’s rich record of Grammar’s past is now easier than ever, thanks to a powerful new interactive online platform.


While an online virtual tour sometimes doesn’t quite compare to being able to see collection objects ‘in the flesh’, being online means you have the chance to explore a museum space in quite a different manner, providing the possibility to expand content through various other media. This is exactly what the Archives Museum tour aims to provide to its audience, highlighting aspects of the School Archives collection that otherwise would be difficult to access, and how they may relate to other items in the collection.

The Archives Museum virtual tour takes technology predominately used for high-end, virtual real estate showcases and remote inspections, utilising software and a custom 360-degree camera developed by US-based Matterport in a slightly different way, taking full advantage of the ‘Mattertags’ feature to provide context to items displayed within the tour, with the help “The Archives Museum virtual tour takes technology predominately used for high-end, virtual real estate showcases.” of explanatory text and multimedia, available from our archives collection and uploaded on other platforms.

For instance, Flickr is a site that has long been used by the School Archives to allow viewing access to highlights of our vast photographic collection. The virtual tour facilitates a link to these images, thematically related to objects displayed as well as text, audio (in the form of short oral history excerpts) and clips of archival footage, uploaded via Vimeo.

Liber Nominum

A click on the tag that accompanies the original Liber Nominum (‘Book of Names’) enrolment register will provide an insight into the first day of school for a Grammar boy who attended more than one hundred years ago, with an oral history excerpt featuring Colonel Basil Holmes, who commenced school in 1904. Furthermore, in 1957, as part of Grammar’s centenary celebrations, the School tracked down former pupil and NSW District Court Judge William Mocatta who was at that time the oldest Old Sydneian (aged 95) from the Class of 1876. A link to Flickr allows the viewer to see this historic photograph.

AB (Banjo) Paterson

The tag relating to the poem ‘Old School Days’ by Banjo Paterson provides an audio link to a reading of the poem by James BoydClark (OS 2020). This poem was first published in The Sydneian, August 1907. During and following school when he served in the Boer War and the First World War, Paterson became a regular contributor to the School’s historic periodical The Sydneian (est. 1875), submitting poems and editorials wherever he was in the world. Grammar’s current Library (built in 1993 and named after Paterson) houses his hitching post (used for tying up horses), originally presented by masters of the early 1900s as a mark of recognition for his literary achievements.

Pupil publications

Archives at Grammar hold many pupil-made and produced magazines and newsletters from as early as 1919. Several have been digitised and a selection is available to view via the virtual museum, such as Class 4B 1962’s 4B Den.

The Cover of 4B Den pupil-made magazine from 1962.jpg

GS Loney’s WWI medals and diaries

In 2013, son Philip Loney donated his father GS Loney’s (SGS 1904-1910) WWI medals and diaries that were kept while fighting in France and Belgium for the AIF from December 1915 until May 1919. As part of the 4th Infantry Battalion he sustained a lung injury from a shell splinter in the trenches of Pozieres in April 1916, with his service eventually earning him a Military Medal. A tag within the virtual tour will allow access to a range of these artefacts.

Click here to take the Virtual Museum Tour right now.

Once inside, simply click on the tags to discover more content, including photos, footage and audio media.
Don’t forget to take advantage of the zoom in/out function on your mouse to optimise your viewing experience of text and images found within the tags.

The tour can also be found on the Archives page of the School website. For further enquiries, email