Ancient Times and Communism in Chinatown

Every building in the #MelbCBD has a story – I knew this as #AncientTimesHouse, a private collection of mummies and antiquities I saw on a school trip in the 70s (no idea who ran it..) though it’s been a shop ? and apartments for ages now – and clearly it’s an Edwardian #redbrick #warehouse, apparently built 1916 and occupied by ‘Chinese cookshops’ – and a quick old newspapers search tells me the occupants got fined often for selling #slygrog, then in the 30s it was the home of the #CommunistPartyOfAustralia (!), then a non denominational #MissionGospelHall from 1937 when the top floor added – and yep it’s a bit #ArtDeco. So much history in a rather unremarkable building. 2nd pic one of my first insta posts – from 2013 !

Update 2021: Now owned by the #CollinsStreetBaptistChurch, and renovated by @wbaarchitects in 2003 to provide a ‘Christian Training Centre at ground floor level to be operated by ‘Urban seed’ and low cost student accommodation over four levels managed by Ecumenical Housing Inc above.’ So much history in one little building.

And the folks who ran it were the Australian Institute of Archeology, started in 1946, focussing on items relevant to the bible, opened at ATH in 1956, moved /absorbed by LaTrobe Uni in c2000, where you can still see it if you’re a serious researcher.

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