Key 48: Melbourne University Press 1921

 

Melbourne University Press, Australia's first scholarly publisher, began as a second-hand book selling agency, a stationery store, a post-office and gown-hiring service. The first books to bear the MUP imprint, Myra Willard's History of the White Australia Policy and D.K. Picken's Number System of Arithmetic and Algebra, appeared in December 1923.

First Melbourne Uuniversity Press premises, MUP is the low building with gabled entrance to theright
First Melbourne Uuniversity Press premises, attached to the North extension of the Quadrangle building (MUP is the low building with gabled entrance at right angle to the main northern fa├žade; the same site as the later building demolished in 2003)
[Source: University of Melbourne Archives Image Catalogue, UMA-I-1325]
Gwyn James
Gwyn James
[Source: University of Melbourne Archives, G.F. James Collection, Accession No: 83/2]

With the appointment of Frank Wilmot (the poet 'Furnley Maurice') the standard of book production was raised, but it was not until after Word War II, under Gwyn F. James and with the support of Russell Grimwade, that the machinery to print these works was secured An endowment from Grimwade made possible the development of the Miegunyah imprint.

Press being moved
Press being moved
[Source: University of Melbourne Archives, G.F. James Collection, Accession No: 83/2]
Manning Clark and Peter Ryan, National Press Club, Canberra, 1980
Manning Clark and Peter Ryan, a long-serving successor to James, National Press Club, Canberra, 1980
[Source: University of Melbourne Archives Image Catalogue, UMA-I-1717]

The publishing arm later took premises in Carlton, leaving the retail bookroom on-campus, though for a short period there was an outlet in the city as well.

Melbourne University Press Staff, 1990
Melbourne University Press Staff, 1990
[Source: University of Melbourne Archives Image Catalogue, UMA-I-1583]