News and work in progress

Ludwig Hirschfeld-Mack

Ludwig Hirschfeld-Mack: More than a Bauhaus artist

We are very proud to announce that the long-awaited biography of Ludwig Hirschfeld-Mack is now available from our online bookstore! Written by Resi Schwarzbauer with the assistance of Hirschfeld-Mack’s grandson, Chris Bell, this book has been more than two decades in the making. Featuring over 200 black-and-white and colour images, and drawing on extensive private family archives and oral histories, it reveals the full story of Hirschfeld-Mack’s extraordinary life in detail.


A clear view to broad horizons — the memoirs of Paul McKeown

A new HistorySmiths publication is now available from our online bookstore.  In this book of edited memoirs, former headmaster of Canberra Grammar School, Paul McKeown, reflects on a lifetime in education, ranging from his own schooldays at Canberra Grammar, to university years in Sydney and Oxford, and to formative teaching experiences at the Dragon School, Outward Bound Mountain School, Northampton Remand Home and Geelong Grammar School’s Timbertop campus. Those who knew him will revel in his warm and insightful recollections; others will appreciate the wisdom and integrity of a man who helped to shape the educational landscape of Australia.


Healing historical harm

Helen Penrose has developed expertise in handling the sensitive matter of historical harm when writing school histories. She has explained how she approaches this difficult topic in her peer-reviewed paper ‘Out of the darkness, into the light: recording child sexual abuse narratives’, published in Circa: the journal of professional historians Issue 7.

Winner! More Than Just Housing

We are delighted to announce that More Than Just Housing: The Southport Community Housing Group Story 1983–2018 has won the Local History — Small Publication Award at the 2019 Victorian Community History Awards. The authors, Beris Campbell, Janet Goodwin and Heather McKee, worked closely with editor Helen Penrose of HistorySmiths and Lynda Patullo of Green Poles Design to produce an engaging and visually appealing publication that records the work of this important community group. 

‘The handsome book itself is a source of pride for all the social workers and tenants involved.’ (VCHA judges)

From left: Helen Penrose with author Janet Goodwin, president of the Royal Historical Society of Victoria Richard Broome, and authors Beris Campbell and Heather McKee. (Image courtesy VCHA)

Carey Baptist Grammar School centenary publication

Opened in 1923, Carey Baptist Grammar School in Kew was the first Baptist independent school to be established in Australia. Since early 2019 historian Helen Penrose has been immersed in research for the school’s centenary history. The result will be a major publication for Carey’s centenary in 2023.