Historic Photo Collection Donated to City Library

Barry Merrick photo donation
From left, Deputy Mayor Phil Barwick, local history buff Barry Merrick, and Mayor Danielle Slade with the collection of photos that have been donated to the City Library.

Published: 24th June 2021

A fascinating insight into Mount Isa’s past has just been donated to the Mount Isa City Library, thanks to local history and photography buff Barry Merrick.

At Council’s June Ordinary Meeting, Mr Merrick presented Mayor Danielle Slade and Deputy Mayor Phil Barwick with a photo album containing 350 photographs of Mount Isa and the mines, spanning a period from 1937 to the 1950s.

Mr Merrick said Mount Isa Mines had recently been contacted by a man who had been given the photo collection.

“Some of them are the cleanest, clearest photographs that we have ever seen of Mount Isa,” Mr Merrick – who works in collaboration with the Library and Mount Isa Mines, archiving photos of the city as well as the mines – said.

“They were taken by amateur photographers – there was a camera group here in those days.

“It’s our heritage, both mining and the town’s heritage.”

The photos will be stored in the history section of the Library and have also been scanned and saved as digital files.

Cr Slade thanked Mr Merrick for his excellent work in finding out more about the photos and digitising them for future posterity.

“You have been diligent in bringing photos to life and reminding everyone of the history of Mount Isa. It’s people like you that keep our history preserved,” Cr Slade said.

“Thank you very much for giving us the honour of keeping these photos. I know the Library will be very excited to have them and they will be taken good care of.”

Cr Barwick said the photos were gratefully received.

“There’s a lot of work that goes into collections of this type and I know how much work you are doing behind the scenes on these sorts of things,” he said.

“It makes great sense to have it at the Library, where we are collating a lot of historical material. It will add great value.”