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Railway Institute gymnasium, Sydney

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CollectionsNational Union of Railwaymen of Australia
Date created: Between 1906 and 1909
Photograph of fourteen women engaged in gymnastic activities, and three men, in a timber and corrugated iron building. The equipment includes padded flooring, ropes with handles hanging from the beams and others for balancing on, metal and timber bar structures and racks of Indian clubs. Most of the women exercise on the climbing stuctures, while one practises with the Indian clubs. The man in the left foreground is probably William Ellis who, assisted by his daughter, instructed the women members on physical culture and gymnastics. Ellis was a Railway Institute Councillor and had strongly campaigned for the establishment of a gymnasium for the railway workers and their families. Receipts from the Railway Jubilee exhibition of 1905 provided funds for the gymnasium, which opened in March 1906. It was in a room on railway premises close to the Railway Institute building. From the 1880s to the late 1920s the Eveleigh workshops and the surrounding 'workmen's dwellings' were the centre for a large community and the Railway Institute provided facilities for many of its recreational activities as well as training courses.
Location: Chalmers Street, Sydney
Other Identifiers: Neg. 4483


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