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National Museum of Australia

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Port Phillip Farmers Society 1860 'Grass Seed Harrows'

2011.0005.0027

Port Phillip Farmers Society 1860 'Grass Seed Harrows'

Object information

Physical description

A silver coloured agricultural medal with inscribed text on one side which reads 'PORT PHILLIP FARMERS SOCIETY / INSTITUTED 1848'. Engraved text in centre reads 'Grass Seed Harrows / 1st PRIZE / awarded to / Mr Gilbert Alston / Annual Exhibition1860.'.

Statement of significance

The David Allen medals collection comprises 111 prize medals awarded at rural and urban agricultural shows across Australia from the mid-19th to the early 20th centuries. Medals in the collection are in good to reasonable condition.

Agricultural and industrial associations formed across rural and urban Australia to foster the development of modern farming systems by promoting new scientific and technological methods. The annual show emerged as a key arena in which the hard work and skill of primary producers were acknowledged and rewarded. Shows also served significant social functions, providing regular occasions to develop and celebrate community ties. Show prizes record the spread and character of rural activities. Medals in the David Allen medals collection feature diverse representations of industrial equipment and rural produce, suggesting the role of the show in characterising agricultural activity as a process of making fruitful the unruly and unfamiliar 'natural' terrains of Australia.

Object information

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