Blue Mountains Local Studies. Get yours at

WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website may contain images and names of people who have passed away.

Our Local Studies Flickr group is run by the Local Studies Librarian at Blue Mountains City Library, based at Springwood in New South Wales, Australia.

John Merriman | Local Studies Librarian
Blue Mountains City Library |104 Macquarie Rd |Springwood NSW 2777
P (02) 4723 5044 |

Here you will find selected high resolution images from our collection. Images which we think are useful, interesting, quirky, historically significant, posses artistic merit, or we just want to know more about.

Visitors are encouraged to post relevant comments and add more information. Please contact the Library direct with any historical or family history enquiries.

If you wish to post an image in a comment, please ensure it is thumbnail size or just a link. Posting a large image in a comment detracts from the main image and is bad manners. Large image comments will be deleted.

The majority of these images are available under a Creative commons, share alike licence, with attribution to Blue Mountains City Library. Please send us a link to the image as used or a copy of the publication.

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic License.

For any images used with the owner's permission and subject to copyright or where copyright is unclear, we have used the label "copyright reserved" please respect this.

In some cases we have named an owner who has donated the images for use, please acknowledge the source if you use them. In all cases we ask that you respect the intellectual property of the photographer if known.

A larger image collection is available at the main library web site shown below.


History Of The Local Studies Service

1974 Council established the Blue Mountains Library service.

1982 First qualified librarian was appointed to establish a ‘Local History’ (later to be known as ‘Local Studies’) collection. The appointment was a temporary one (6 months), working 3 days each week.

1982 September. The Local History Librarian’s position was extended for a further 12 months.

1983, September. The position of Local History Librarian was made a permanent, full-time position.

1983 Local Studies Collection moved with the library’s Administration from the Springwood Industrial Area to Springwood Library.

1984 With the assistance of a C.E.P. grant that enabled the employment of two people for 12 months, the library embarked on an oral history project titled “Speaking of the Past”.

1984 Local Studies Section moved into part of Braemar after it was vacated by Prospect County Council. [Retained use of a large section of the library’s compactus under Springwood library.]

1986 Local Studies assistant seconded to the Local Studies Section of the library.

1988 'Braemar' officially opened as an art gallery and Local History Centre. The LS service moved in and the LS Librarian established an office and began organising the collection

1988 Position of Local Studies Assistant was made full-time.

1989, Director of Corporate Services expressed the opinion that “the local studies service rendered by the library is perceived by the community to be a very important Council service”.

1995 The position of Local Studies Assistant was withdrawn during this year. Open hours were reduced to three days. The Local Studies Section operated with one staff member.

2002 Job share Local Studies Librarian appointed in June, working two days a week.

2004 Circulation desk duties were introduced at branches two days a week, effectively reducing the position to a part time one.

2006 The position became full job share

2007 LS librarian retired in July, new LS librarian appointed.

2008 Local Studies Flickr account established, Local Studies blog commenced.

2014 Oral History interviews (95) from Speaking of the Past project (1984-5) digitised.

2015 Trove newspaper digitisation completed.

2016 Portfolio catalogue module adopted to enable Local Studies images and digitised Oral History interviews to be made available online at the library website.

From a couple of shelves of books in 1982, the Local Studies Service it has grown into a collection that occupies three rooms of ‘Braemar’, an 1890s home attached to Springwood Library, and various cupboards and compactus bays in the downstairs section of the library.

The LS service and collections are used by a broad range of library patrons including students, local historians, family historians, independent researchers, heritage consultants, local businesses, visual and performing artists, writers, film makers, council and government departments etc., Utilisation of the physical and online resources has grown enormously since its inception and will continue to do so.

Annual Report 2016

Total views since July 2008 reached 7,386,166 on 920 cumulative images.

Views for the year were just under 2 million.

Followers were 397.

The most popular image was Kingsford Smith Park at 74,292 -

A total of 10 images have now been in Explore, including two during the past year. They are shown in the photostream graphic.

The most Interesting photo is Dawson's Chambers 1885 with 39 comments -

The most Favourited photo is Weeping Rock 1880 with 127 faves.

Annual Report 2015

Total views reached 5.4 million on 790 images in 85 albums.
Groups administered were 59 with a further six moderated.
Followers were 341.
Another three images received Explore status.

Mid-year Report June 2015
Around 4,160,000 total views on 770 images.
The top 20 images have 25,000 - 35,000 each and daily views are running at 5,000 - 10, 000.
We administer 58 groups and moderate another five.
Five images are in Explore.
We have 295 followers and continue to benefit from the knowledge and hard work of our commentators who add valuable details and identifying information to our images - thank you every one.

Annual Report 2014
We finished the year with 2,850,000 total views on 740 images.

Our keen band of followers provided much useful information and added considerable value to the collection. They researched locations, provided commentary and simply shared their enjoyment of our historic images.

Mid Year Report 2014
All-time views reached 1,873,445 on 707 images, averaging 2,650 each.
Most popular image was Victoria Pass with 34,125 views and we had 223 keen followers.
Daily views are averaging around 5K and every image is viewed every day.
Thank you to our many viewers who continue to provide valuable comments that enrich and extend the usefulness of our images.
We currently administer 54 groups and moderate another six.

Annual Report 2013
We finished the year with 1,028,474 total views on 685 images.
Daily views averaged 3,000 - 4,000 and each image was viewed between 3 and 60 times daily.
Most popular was the Holden Monaro and the Buckle Mini Monaco on Craven A corner at Catalina Park Circuit with 7,238 views; followed by the Geological Sketch Map of Katoomba and Brief History of Coal Mining with 7,043. In the top 20 were the Granville Train Disaster images and the 1957 Bushfires.
Much useful information has emerged from comments and we have 206 enthusiastic followers.
Blue Mountains City Library

Photos of Blue Mountains Local Studies (1)

  • Eurama by bluemountainabandoned

Blue Mountains Local Studies' favorite photos from other Flickr members (58)

Following (18)

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Testimonials (1)

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    opsbooks says:

    "A great place to visit with some fine historical photos here, and I look forward to seeing new arrivals with much interest. Keep 'em coming!"

    June 22nd, 2008

May 2008
Springwood, New South Wales
Blue Mountains, Australia
Librarian, historian
Blue Mountains City Library