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  • Title
    Burke family collection
  • Creator
  • Level of description
  • Date

    1838 - ca. 1990
  • Type of material
  • Reference code
  • Physical Description
    26 boxes, 1 outsize box - 4.66 Meters
    Textual Records
    Textual Records - (photocopy)
    Textual Records - (typescript)
    Textual Records - (typescript, photocopy)
    Textual Records - (typescript, carbon)
    Textual Records - (typescript, processed)
    Clippings - (photocopy)
    Textual Records - (printed)
    Textual Records - (printed, photocopy)

    Walter Burke (1866-1954), photographer, journalist and advertising agent, was the first Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society from Australasia, appointed in 1897. He joined the Christchurch Weekly Press (CWP) as field photographer, and became editor and circulation manager. He was one of the Canterbury region's early documentary photographers. After the Burke family moved to Sydney in 1904, Walter became the third editor of The Australasian Photo-Review, published by Kodak (Australasia) Ltd, the following year. He established the Walter Burke Advertising Agency which ran until 1937.

    Eric Keast Burke (1896-1974), photographer, journalist and historian, was born at Christchurch, New Zealand. He was educated at Sydney Church of England Grammar School and graduated Bachelor of Economics from the University of Sydney in 1922. During World War I he had served with the 1st Australian Wireless Signal Squadron, Mesopotamian Expeditionary Force. He edited the unit history With Horse and Morse in Mesopotamia, published in 1927. Burke served as associate-editor of APR and took over as editor on his father's retirement in 1946. He promoted the publication of historical research on Australian photography and the documentary value of photographs. His lasting legacy is his involvement in the discovery, in 1951, and the permament preservation of a unique collection of nearly 3,500 glass negatives featuring the mining towns of Hill End and Gulgong, N.S.W., in the 1870s. The photographs were commissioned by gold miner Bernard Otto Holtermann, and taken by the photographers Beaufoy Merlin and Charles Bayliss. The Holtermann Estate presented this collection to the Mitchell Library in 1952. Burke's extensive researches, with the assistance of his wife, Iris, on the Holtermann Collection over the next two decades culminated in the publication of Gold and Silver (1973). Burke was Photographic Consultant to the National Library of Australia from 1964 to 1974.

    Iris Lily Burke (1902-1999) was a contributor to APR and research assistant to her husband on various projects. Her research on the life and works of the Australian poet Henry Kendall, resulted in Foreshadowings: The Bibliography of Australia began with Henry Kendall (1963), published by the Australian Documentary Facsimile Society, and the unpublished manuscript 'Poet in a Prose Landscape: A Selection of the Essays of Henry Kendall'.
  • Scope and Content
    Keast Burke - papers, 1838-1974
    Iris Burke - papers, 1868-ca. 1990
    Photographs currently with the Pictures Section
  • System of arrangement
    This collection comprises 2 record series. You may navigate to a more detailed description of each series from this collection record.
  • Source
    Presented by Iris Burke in 1987-1988 and 1990, and by Kerras Burke via Sandra Pigott, nee Burke, in 2000
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