1914 City Baths


A delightful photograph of the Melbourne City Baths in 1914. The architect was John James Clark who also designed the Treasury Building, the Royal Mint building and the Customs House, among other major works in Melbourne. This building was completed in 1904, built by the Swanson Brothers. The baths are still at 420 Swanston Street and you can use the baths' facilities.

By the 1850s the Yarra had become quite polluted and was the cause of an epidemic of typhoid fever, resulting in many deaths. 

The Melbourne City Council opened the first Melbourne City Baths for public use at this location on 23rd December 1859, but after nearly 40 years of use they were closed in 1899 due to lack of maintenance of the building. The new Baths in this photo were opened on 23 March 1904.

This is a magnificent print that has had many hours of work being retouched, to present it as crisp and as clean as we can make it.

All text © HotPress

Photograph attributed to Algernon Darge.

Notes from the State Library tell us that this photograph "Shows the exterior of the Public Baths, 420 Swanston Street from Victoria Street."

This is a digitally retouched reproduction of the original held by the State Library of Victoria. All prints are reproduced without the HOTPRESS watermarks.

Our team of conservators have worked on a high resolution digital image in order to remove blemishes and artifacts such as stains, mould, scratches and damage caused by the handling of the original. We strive to provide authentic representations of the original work that are suitable for enlargements that retain the tones and character of the original.

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