North Shore Historical Society
The Society, founded in 1958, aims to promote both public knowledge of and research into local history, including the way in which the histories of the city of Sydney and the NSW State have impacted on the development of the North Shore.
The Society accomplishes its objectives through regular monthly meetings, visits to historical sites, and walks exploring regional history. It also supports History Prizes for local school students and promotes its Biennial NSHS History Prize (valued up to $6,000).
The Society assists Council in many matters including the provision of plaques at historical sites.
The Society's archives and research files can be accessed in the North Sydney Heritage Centre (Stanton Library), plus advice and support can be sourced from others with particular interests or expertise. Or you can view pages from the Historical Society journals online.
Meetings are on the second Thursday of each month (not Dec/Jan)
Meetings commence at 7pm with an interesting guest speaker (light refreshments are served from 6.30pm)
Topic and Speaker
11 May 2017
Topic: Horse Buses of the North Shore
Duncan’s talk will cover the story of Sydney's Horse buses from the 1840’s to the 1920’s. The first buses (imported from London) were 'boxes on wheels' operating along George Street to the inner western suburbs.
Jonathan Howard's “Invincibles” were the first large operator but standards were poor until regulations were introduced by the Colonial Government. In the early 1870’s American style buses were introduced and larger companies such as the Sydney Tramway and Omnibus Company were formed. But by the 1890’s the Government's trams were to end the horse buses monopoly on Sydney's transport and within a few years they were confined to the outer suburbs and the country.
The talk will cover all aspects of the buses but with a special focus on the North Shore of Sydney.
Speaker: Duncan MacAuslan
Duncan’s interest in transport and history began in childhood in Scotland where he sold bus tickets in his grandparent’s shop and became an expert in Edinburgh’s buses and in particular their routes and timetables.
In Sydney he joined the Historic Commercial Vehicle Association (HCVA ) over 25 years ago and became a regular shopkeeper at Tempe Bus Museum and was on the HCVA board for a few years. He is currently a board member of the Sydney Bus Museum and chairs their management committee as the SBM’s archivist and curator.
Copies of Duncan’s book Ryle'wy will be available for purchase at $59.95.
Enquiries: Secretary 9929 6637; visitors welcome!
Further details of future activities:
Latest NSHS Bulletin (1012KB)
How to Join the NSHS
Membership of the North Shore Historical Society is open to all residents of the Lower North Shore of Sydney, as well as to everyone with an interest in regional history. Membership offers you the opportunity to meet other people with similar interests, to attend meetings with informative guest speakers, to attend outings to places of historical interest, and to receive our monthly Newsletter with details of meetings, speakers and other relevant historical matters.
The membership fee is $12 per person, per annum.
Visitors are welcome to attend our monthly meeting, the cost is $4 (includes refreshments).
If you would like to join, please download:
Application for Membership Form (231KB)
complete and post it with your cheque to the NSHS postal address, or bring it along to one of the monthly meetings.
Heritage Plaques Walks
- McMahons Point to Waverton (350KB)
- Cammeray to Lavender Bay (793KB)
- Neutral Bay to Kirribilli (468KB)
- Military Road to Cremorne Point (628KB)
For other interesting and historical walks, please visit our Walking webpage.