Guide to the Records of Australian Rostrum ACT Dais

MS 4963

National Library of Australia

Collection Summary

Records of Australian Rostrum ACT Dais
Date Range
Collection Number
MS 4963
1.68 metres (12 boxes)
Language of Materials
National Library of Australia


Scope and Contents

The records mainly comprise correspondence and circulars, 1974-1985; financial records, 1959-1982; membership records, 1969-1985; records relating to the Australian Rostrum Council, 1947-1985; records relating to the 'Voice of Youth' national speaking competitions, 1975-1988; Alan Crook Award records, 1974-1984; ACT Rostrum Critics Club records, 1973-1983; and records of the ACT Dais Club No. 2, 1965-1985. There are also records relating to Freemen; State Dais'; Australian Institute of Managements/Rostrum courses; the 1980 Australian Rostrum Jubilee Celebrations; the 1983 NSW/ACT Rostrum Convention; the Raja Ratnam Award, 1982-85; the Cooma Club, 1956-1962; and printed material.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is available for reference.

Conditions Governing Use

Copying and publishing of unpublished manuscript material is subject to copyright restrictions. For such material, written permission to publish must be obtained from the copyright holder(s). Copying of unpublished material for research purposes is permissible 50 years after the death of the creator of the material.

Preferred Citation

Items from this collection should be cited as '[Title or description of manuscript item], Papers of Australian Rostrum ACT Dais, National Library of Australia, MS 4963, [series and/or file number]'.


The records were donated in five consignments between May 1975 and July 1991.

The Australian Rostrum Council Records are also held by the National Library at MS 7157.

Historical Note

Rostrum is a non-political, non-profit organisation which aims to improve the quality of public speaking in the community. Rostrum was formed in 1923 in Manchester, England from members of the YMCA Businessmen's Speaking Class. It was introduced to Australia in 1930 by Alan Crook and Robert S. Swainson through the YMCA in Sydney. The Rostrum national body is Australian Rostrum. The co-ordinating authority in each state and territory is known as a 'Dais'. Each Dais president is an ex-officio member of the Australian Rostrum Council.

The first Canberra Rostrum club was established in 1953, and the formation of the ACT Dais followed in 1958. The ACT Dais is the governing body of the ACT Zone, which also includes Bega, Cooma and Yass. There are around a dozen clubs within the ACT Zone. Each Dais conducts regular sessions at which public speaking is studied and practised under the guidance of critics appointed by the club. The ACT Rostrum Critics Club was created by the Dais in 1974 to promote training in criticism and to facilitate the assessment of the competence of critics seeking accreditation.

Item Descriptions

Series 1. Correspondence, 1974-1985 Show allonly 1

Inward and outward correspondence, 1974-1985, and circulars, 1977-1985.

Series 2. Financial records, 1959-1982 Show allonly 1

Annual reports, financial statements and minutes, 1959-1975, and files on finance and fundraising.

Series 3. Constitution records, 1975-1983 Show allonly 1

Correspondence, by-laws, copies and drafts of the constitution proposals to alter the constitution, certificate of incorporation, rules and objects and other records.

Series 4. Membership records, 1969-1985 Show allonly 1

Membership lists and returns.

Series 5. Australian Rostrum Council, 1974-1985 Show allonly 1

Correspondence with the ARC, 1976-1978, ARC reports and minutes, 1974-1985, reports to the ARC, 1982-1983, and records relating to ARC meetings, 1982-1983.

Series 6. 'Voice of Youth' national speaking competitions, 1975-1988 Show allonly 1

Correspondence, reports, newspaper clippings, application forms, media releases and other records.

Series 7. Alan Crook Award, 1974-1984 Show allonly 1

Guides for judges, submission forms and reports of the award panel.

Series 8. ACT Rostrum Critics Club, 1973-1983 Show allonly 1

Includes reports, standing orders, by-laws, a file on critics and adjudicators, 1973, and papers on critic training.

Series 9. ACT Dais Club No. 2, 1965-1985 Show allonly 1

Includes correspondence, 1968-1970, membership records, minutes of meetings, 1968-1970, minute books, 1969-1970 and 1983-1985, and statements of receipts and expenditures.

Series 10. Other records, 1956-1985 Show allonly 1

File 1-4. Freemen records, 1980-1985 Show allonly 1

Including records relating to nominations for Freemanship, 1982-1983, minutes of Freeman's Council meetings, 1982-1983, and constitutional changes to the appointment of Freemen.

File 5-7. Rostrum State Dais records, 1983-1985 Show allonly 1

Includes copies of minutes of meetings of State Dais', 1983-1985, and State Rostrum publications, 1983-1985.

File 8-9. Course programs, correspondence and other records relating to Australian Institute of Managements/Rostrum courses, 1981-1984 Show allonly 1

File 10. Printed material, programs, addresses and other records relating to the Australian Rostrum Jubilee celebrations, 1980 Show allonly 1

File 11. Records relating to the NSW/ACT Rostrum Convention, 1983 Show allonly 1

Including financial papers, proofs for conference publications, Rostrum Convention handbook (1983), printed matter, and notes.

File 12. Correspondence and rules relating to the Raja Ratnam Award, 1982-1985 Show allonly 1

File 13. Records of Frank Hall, President of the ACT Dais, 1975-1980 Show allonly 1

Includes correspondence, reports, membership summaries, printed material and other records on the ACT Dais activities.

File 14. Records of W.G.R. Gilfillan, Chairman of the Cooma Club, 1956-1981 Show allonly 1

Includes minute book, 1956-1962 of the Cooma Club, agendas, circulars, newspaper clippings, correspondence and other records.

File 15. Printed material, 1965-1973 Show allonly 1

Including pamphlets on Rostrum, the ACT Dais handbook and syllabus, and the Rostrum recorder, 1982-1985.

File 16-18. Miscellaneous files, a poster and a name tag Show allonly 1

Container List

Series File/Item Box
1 1-3
2 3-4
3 4
4 5-6
5 6
6 7
7 7-8
8 8
9 8-9
10 1-4 9
5-12 10
13-15 11
16-18 12