Desk Tidy c1910

Maker unknown

Registration number



Maker unknown


Desk Tidy

Production date



wood, silver, wax

Dimensions (H x W x D)

45 x 19 x 24.5 cm


Front panel: GIVEN / TO THE / LORD MAYOR & CORPORATION / OF THE / CITY OF MELBOURNE / BY / Sir Thomas D. Gibson Carmichael / GOVERNOR OF VICTORIA / ON THE OCCASION OF THE OPENING / OF THE / NEW BUILDINGS / AT THE / TOWN HALL / AUGUST 9TH 1910 Back panel: "THE RED GUM LOG FROM WHICH THIS BOX WAS MADE ONCE FORMED PART OF A CORDUROY ROAD ALONG LITTLE BOURKE ST. It was quite sound when cut out by workmen excavating an Electric wire Tunnel in Post Office Place WHERE IT HAD LAIN FOR MORE THEN 60 YEARS. The colour of the mouldings is due to the action of water on the outside of the log."

Credit line

Presented by Sir Thomas D. Gibson Carmichael (Governor of Victoria), 1910
City of Melbourne Art and Heritage Collection


Melbourne Town Hall, Lord Mayor, Sir Thomas D. Carmichael, Governor of Victoria, Little Bourke St, Post Office Place, Red Gum, Corduroy Road, Desk tidy


This desk tidy, with contrasting-wood inlaid beading, includes a candlestick and two lidded boxes (containing sealing wax and a spare candle), and comprises seven compartments in total. The front has a diamond-shaped engraved panel and the back a rectangular engraved panel, describing where the wood came from.The desk tidy is made from red gum that was once part of a corduroy (or log) road that was part of Little Bourke Street, in central Melbourne.The desk tidy was given to the lord mayor and corporation of the City of Melbourne by Sir Thomas D. Gibson Carmichael, Governor of Victoria, on the opening of the new buildings at the Town Hall, on 9 August 1910.