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Science and the making of VictoriaRoyal Society of Victoria
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Royal Society of Victoria 1854-1959


Victorian Institute for the Advancement of Science

Philosophical Society of Victoria

Philosophical Institute of Victoria

Royal Society of Victoria



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Royal Society of Victoria (continued)

A proposal in 1944 by Royal Societies of several States in Australia that reciprocal benefits should be available between States to their members was agreed to in principle as being in the best interests of the scientific life of the community.

In 1945 it became evident that, with the rapidly increasing library and with the renewed interest in the Society, the buildings were not adequate for the requirements of the Society. A number of suggestions were forthcoming, one of which was that the Society should claim from the Commonwealth Government exemption from income tax of gifts to the Society. The Federal Treasurer declined to approve, and the Society was forced back to consider further the leasing of the site.

The book-binding fund, which had been closed down in 1938, was re-opened in 1946 when, in addition to a sum of money set aside by the Society, money was received from commercial organizations for this purpose. This enabled some reduction in the large number of volumes awaiting binding. An attempt in the same year to have the credit of £100 per annum with the Government Printer transferred to an outright grant to the Society was refused. This was disappointing to the council who had hoped to use the money for printing the Proceedings in an attempt to overcome the time lag in publishing. However, the transfer to a cash grant was not long in coming, as it was effected during 1948.

The resignation of Dr F. L. Stillwell as honorary secretary early in 1947 was received by the Society with great regret. Dr Stillwell had occupied this very important post for over 18 years, a longer period than any previous secretary. During his secretaryship he had had to contend with the effect of the economic depression on membership and publication of the Proceedings and later, during the war period, the irregular despatching of publications throughout the world. The fact that this work was well done and the Society made progress during these difficult times speaks well for Dr Stillwell's ability and devotion to the Society. In recognition of these services, Dr Stillwell was elected an honorary life member. The Society, however, did not lose the benefit of Dr Stillwell's experience as he retained his seat on the council.

People in Bright Sparcs - Stillwell, Frank Leslie

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Pescott, R. T. M. 1961 'The Royal Society of Victoria from then, 1854 to now, 1959', Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria, vol. 73, no. 7, pp. 1-40.

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