Local students given a look at a rare historical collection

St John’s School and Cobar Public School students will today get to view some rare pieces of history, including this 1829 portrait of King Bungaree, the first Australian to circumnavigate Australia. The pieces are part of the State Library’s FAR OUT program which is travelling across regional NSW. ▪ Photo contributed

Explorer Matthew Flinders’ equipment list and a portrait of Bungaree, the first Australian to circumnavigate the continent with Flinders, are among the extraordinary items from the State Library’s collection that will be on display in Cobar today.

State Librarian John Vallance said it was great that these rare pieces of Australian history were to be shown in Cobar, as part of the State Library’s FAR Out! Treasures to the Bush initiative.

“The valuable FAR Out! program has reached nearly 30,000 students in regional areas across NSW,” Dr Vallance said.

He said he was thrilled that Cobar students would get to benefit from it.

“I am delighted that this program continues to be supported by the State Library of NSW’s Foundation.”

The State Library’s Learning team will run fun and interactive activities with students and teachers around a selection of landmark Australian treasures including: Matthew Flinders’ list of equipment for his HMS Investigator voyage, sent to his patron Joseph Banks; an 1829 portrait of King Bungaree, the first Australian to circumnavigate Australia; a ‘new terrestrial globe’ by globe maker Nathanial Hill from 1754; and a telescope thought to have belonged to Ludwig Leichhardt dating back to 1842.

The State Library’s manager of Learning Services Megan Perry said the State Library of NSW is the home of Australia’s history.

“We’re thrilled to be bringing a selection of historic objects from the Library’s collection to this region, providing students and teachers with an opportunity to engage with our past in a very real way,”  Ms Perry said.

FAR Out! connects students and teachers to the amazing resources and unique learning services the State Library has to offer onsite, online and in the community.

In the past 10 years over 70 per cent of NSW schools have participated in State Library learning programs.