Researching buildings and houses

Learn how to research the history of your house or a prominent Melbourne building using the Library’s collection of architectural drawings, maps and online tools.

SLV architectural drawings collection

Recasting and extending chemist shop,LTAD 82

Recasting and extending chemist shop, LTAD 82

The Library's collection of architectural drawings is held in the Pictures Collection. It is made up of architects' drawings of 19th and 20th century buildings.

The SLV also holds measured drawings of some buildings on the Historic Buildings Register or those classified by the National Trust, including the digitised Matthew Flinders measured drawings competition.

The drawings are mostly of Victorian buildings, but also include some examples of interstate and overseas buildings. A listing of drawings of the State Library of Victoria can be found in this guide.

Several collections of drawings by landscape architects or designers are also represented.

Prominent Melbourne architects

Grounds, Romberg & Boyd

Walter Butler (1864-1949)

Stephenson & Turner

William Pitt (1855-1918)

Mr Joseph Reed, architect

Mr Joseph Reed, IAN09/10/80/189

The architect who designed the State Library of Victoria.


Subject headings

You can browse the following subjects headings from the Pictures Catalogue

Architectural drawings

Architecture, Modern--20th century

Architecture-- Victoria

Landscape architecture drawings (for garden & landscaping plans)

Public Record Office Victoria

PROV holds the drawings of Victorian government buildings, spanning 1853 to 1998. Included in the collection are drawings of state, high and technical schools, colleges, mental asylums, government offices, bridges and roads, law courts, police stations and prisons. 

Housing costs in the 1880s

The Pamphlet of useful information for persons wishing to either build, borrow, or invest details the cost of housing in the 1880s. Also includes some house plans and elevations.

University of Melbourne Archives

The University of Melbourne Archives hold records relating to the architectural history and social geography of Victoria including the records of both architectural firms and individual architects. These include architectural plans from tens of thousands of Victoria’s buildings and built structures.

The Archives also hold other material that may be of use when researching buildings and houses, including sales brochures, newspaper clippings, various maps, records of architectural historians, and photographs.