Step back in time and meet Miss Show Girl. Featuring photographs, film, prizes, sashes and outfits from the quest, Miss Show Girl (1957 – 1996) highlights the history and behind the scenes stories of this quest.
The Young Bull and Herdsman sculpture that greets visitors to the RASV was first exhibited at the Royal Academy, London in 1887 and a year later was shown and sold at the 1888 Centennial Exhibition in Melbourne.
For many visitors, sparkly dolls on sticks are synonymous with a visit to the Show. The Stott family have been making and selling cupie dolls at the Show for over 70 years and have a loyal fan base.
Showbags are an Australian phenomenon with no overseas counterpart. A firm favourite on the local scene, showbags have established a place for themselves in the collective history of generations of Australians.
In 1916 Women’s Industries (now known as Art, Craft & Cookery) introduced the Red Cross Division competition within the traditional needlework and cookery competition of the Royal Melbourne Show. Following the guidelines stipulated, women competed by creating items from the Red Cross Booklet.
The Minister for Defence formally requisitioned the Showgrounds for the war effort on 22 July 1915 and the RASV Council announced that the Royal Melbourne Show would be abandoned for the year.
A short film celebrating the history of the Miss Showgirl competition at the Royal Melbourne Show
A short film highlighting the showing of Dairy and Beef Cattle at the Royal Melbourne Show.
A short film of sheep breeders, exhibitors and judges at the Royal Melbourne Show
Hugh John Wirth loved animals from a young age, so it was no surprise that he chose a career in veterinary science. Hugh loved visiting the Royal Melbourne Show as a child.
Wolfgang Franz Otto Blass arrived in Australia in 1961. Born in Germany, Wolfgang started working in the wine industry at a young age.
Jan Baker got involved with the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) and the Royal Melbourne Show through her parents.
Robert Beggs grew up in a farming family outside of Ballarat. He knew that his life would involve working in agriculture, as had his father’s and his father’s before him.
Since she was a young girl, Kath Metherall loved animals, especially horses. She remembers feeding the horses of the baker and the butcher as they came around with their deliveries when she was just two years old.
Jack Rae was born into agricultural life. He lived his whole life on the same property. His family lived in Narre Warren North for generations and ran a dairy farm.
Mary de Crespigny (nee Bartram) grew up with a long family connection to the Royal Melbourne Show.
Don Simpson grew up in Glen Huntly and first attended the Royal Melbourne Show as a ten-year-old, in 1933.
Bill Mahncke has a history of over six decades of showing at and attending the Royal Melbourne Show.
Ivan Clifford Heazlewood came from generations of sheep farmers in Tasmania. Growing up, he knew being on the farm was all he wanted to do.
In 1994, Peter Payne was approached by a recruiter searching for a new CEO for the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV).
Owen ‘Doc’ Matthews’ dressage displays set to music captured the imagination of thousands of Royal Melbourne Show visitors in the decade between 1965 and 1975.
Despite growing up in the Melbourne suburb of Balwyn, Shirley Sleigh had a family connection with agriculture via her father who worked as a wool broker.
John Fox grew up on a farm in New South Wales. He attended agricultural college and learned wool classification before moving to Victoria to join a wool broking firm in Geelong.
Keith Urquhart can’t remember exactly how old he was when he started going to the Royal Melbourne Show but knows he was ‘pretty young’
Sydney Howard’s family have been in the pyrotechnics business since 1920 and he was only 11 when he supervised his very first fireworks display.
Having called 43 Royal Melbourne Shows, announcer Graeme Barker is known as the ‘Voice of the Show’.
Michael Burston was born in Melbourne but lived on a farm at Mulwala in New South Wales until being sent to boarding school aged five.
Harley Clappison was Director of the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) from 1971 until 1980.
Brian Leslie grew up in a family with a long history of dairy and cattle farming. He first went to the Show as a small boy and loved it.
Valerie Fisher grew up in Melbourne and had never heard of the Country Women’s Association when she moved to Barnawartha as a young woman.
Bill Chambers has been a familiar face at the Royal Melbourne Wine Awards for many years. Born in Rutherglen in 1933, Bill became the fifth generation winemaker in his family.
When Brian Parry joined the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) in 1981, he came from a management background, not one of agriculture.
For nearly fifty years, Neil and Joan Edwards were a familiar team in the woodchop competition at the Royal Melbourne Show.
Norma Buckland was a somewhat reluctant contributor to the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) at first.
Jack Seymour’s involvement with the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) and the Royal Melbourne Show stemmed from his professional background in banking.
Allan Watson became involved with the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV) through his father, the famous Jimmy Watson.
Bruce Starritt has a long connection with the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria (RASV), being the third generation in his family to be involved in breeding and showing animals at the Royal Melbourne Show.
Lindsay Anderson is one of seven generations of the Anderson family that has been connected with the Royal Melbourne Show for over a century.
Elma Murphy has been involved with the Royal Melbourne Show almost her entire life. She grew up on a sheep and cattle farm, and attended the Show every year with her parents.
Constructed in 1977, the Pie in the Sky is all that remains today of what was at the time a new concept in food kiosks for the Royal Melbourne Show.
Grand Parades on the main arena were a popular Royal Melbourne Show attraction and tradition.
The motto of the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria Limited is as old as English literature and dates back to the Paxton Letters of the fourteenth century.
The making of the Hollywood movie 'On the Beach' was a significant event for Melbourne and for the Melbourne Showgrounds.
In 1898, the Women's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) submitted an application to the RASV Council requesting that a booth be erected for the sale of light refreshments and afternoon tea on the showgrounds during the annual show. This request led to the establishment of the White Ribbon Tea Rooms.
The RASV has a rich history, which is closely entwined with the development of Melbourne and Victoria. Our history and stories belong to the community and we welcome your participation in recording our shared heritage.
Each year, between 1957 and 1989, in the lead up to the Royal Melbourne Show, The Shell - RASV Journalists Tour took journalists on a guided tour of a particular region in Victoria to highlight agricultural industries and the plight of farmers and their families.
Harold Thomas Popple was a lifelong member of the RASV. He joined in 1933 and continued his membership until 2010 – 78 years in total. Harold passed away in 2010 at the age of 103.
Bob Morgan, RASV public relations manager 1964 - 1977. For more than a decade Bob Morgan, as RASV public relations manager, sold the fun and excitement of the Royal Melbourne Show to families across Victoria.
An energetic Chief Stewardess
A tale of knitting, royalty and a bouncing baby.
Do you know the story behind the painted murals at the Showgrounds?
The RASV Trophy Collection represents over 160 years of reward and recognition in the agricultural industry and allied fields. The aesthetic and historical qualities of the trophies are such that the Collection is of state and national significance.
The Marshwood Challenge Trophy was first awarded in 1974.
The Col. AV Pope Cup was first awarded in 1950.
The Alice Laidlaw Memorial Trophy was first awarded in 1947.
The Alistair Irving Memorial Trophy was first awarded in 1988.
The K G Luke Perpetual Cup was first awarded in 1946.
The Arnold Caddy Memorial Trophy was first awarded in 1951.
The Prince of Wales Cup was first awarded in 1971.
The Borthwick Trophy was first awarded in 1953 at the Coronation Show.
The Victoria Agricultural Society Champion Ploughing Cup was awarded in the 1870s.
The Providence Cup was first awarded in 2012.
The Waterford Charolais Youth Team Challenge Trophy was first awarded in 2007.
The Earl of Stradbroke Cup was first awarded in 1924.
The Eileen Bartram Perpetual Trophy for Best Welsh Exhibit at the Royal Melbourne Show was first awarded in 1979.
The J F Guthrie Perpetual Trophy was first awarded in 1955.
The Jimmy Watson Memorial Trophy was first awarded in 1962.
The Garryowen Trophy was first awarded in 1934.
The Janice M Gray Memorial Trophy was first awarded in 1988.