Fremantle Stuff > Organisations > Swan River Mechanics Institute

Mechanics Institute


The building on the left is the Swan River Mechanics Institute, founded 1851, while the one in the middle is the Freemasons Lodge, 1867. We are looking along Hay St from Pier St to Barracks St, on the corner of which the Town Hall is under construction c. 1870. Battye 009245D

The Mechanics Institute building is quite like the building in Fremantle called the Literary Institute, and I expect its functions were identical with the Perth one: that the aims of both were educational, both providing a library.

There was also a Perth Working Men's Institute. It is not at present known what distinguished the two institutes. In the case of Fremantle the two organisations became one in 1868 (to form the Literary Institute just mentioned).


This is the building that in 1898 replaced the one above on the corner of Hay and Pier Streets, designed by W. Wolf and built by W. Summers for c. £11k. Battye image 013977PD.

References and Links

Hasluck, Alexandra & Mollie Lukis 1977, Victorian and Edwardian Perth from Old Photographs, John Ferguson, Sydney.

See also: Working Men's Institute.

Garry Gillard | New: 15 June, 2018 | Now: 14 November, 2019