Central Catholic Library Membership Card that belonged to Arthur Calwell #2010-0267
Rectangular card with inscription ‘Century Club Membership Ticket… Mr. A. A. Calwell…’ in a black and clear plastic pouch; this membership card is for the Central Catholic Library, Melbourne.
This membership card is part of a collection of objects that belonged to Arthur Calwell, Australia’s first Minister for Immigration (1945-49) that were donated to the museum by his daughter, Dr Mary Elizabeth Calwell.
This membership card is for the Central Catholic Library, Melbourne, and belonged to Arthur Calwell. The Library was established in 1924, following the example of a similar institution in Dublin and at the behest of Archbishop Mannix. Frank Murphy says in his biography Daniel Mannix that the library ‘began to play an ever increasing role in the formation of the mind of the Catholic community. As a meeting-place, as well as a library, with regular lectures and discussions, formal and informal, it became a centre indeed’ (Murphy, 1948, p. 119). The books in the library eventually became the nucleus of the Caroline Chisholm Library, which is still extant. Family records indicate that Arthur and Elizabeth Calwell donated books to the library in c. 1933.