Society History

During the Second World War a group of professional men championed the establishment of the Illawarra Historical Society.   They organised a public meeting on Tuesday, 5 December 1944 chaired by the then Mayor of Wollongong, Alderman J. J. Kelly.  The Illawarra historical society was formed at the meeting and a provisional committee appointed. 

The first general meeting was held on Thursday, 1st February 1945.  At that meeting, the following office bearers were elected:

Patron:                        Dr Harry Maldon

President:                    Mr John Harrison

Vice-Presidents:         Mr Allen Higgins

                                    Mr Arthur Jones

Secretary:                    Mr Alexander Fleming

Treasurer:                    Mr Cyril Law

Research Officer:       Dr Robert Taylor

Committee:                 Capt. William Nicholson

                                    Mr Thomas Maguire

                                    Mr Harold Milne

                                    Mr William Simpson

                                    Mr   Gordon Worland

The first ordinary meeting was held on Thursday 8th February 1945 in the rooms of the Illawarra Mutual Building Society.  The meeting agreed that ordinary meetings of the society would be held on the first Thursday of each month except January.  Each meeting would have a guest speaker who would address members of the society on an historic topic.  The Society has always maintained the same meeting schedule and format.

The society was formally accepted as an affiliate of Royal Australian Historical Society on 13 February 1945.  The Society became affiliated with the National Trust of Australia on 12 February 1948.


[Illawarra Historical Society Inc.: 60th Anniversary Commemorative Issue/ C Herben. Wollongong, Illawarra Historical Society, 2004]

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