Uncover a piece of history

View of the north shore, Port Melbourne is a rare and evocative glimpse of maritime life in mid-19th-century Melbourne, created by one of the city's most colourful characters – entrepreneur and artist WFE Liardet.

This extraordinary work has been hidden from the public for more than 150 years, but we now have the chance to acquire and share this historic treasure.

Help us raise $100,000 to purchase and protect View of the north shore, and ensure it is made available in a public collection for generations to come.

Your donation is vital to acquire and conserve this piece of history

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About WFE Liardet

London-born Wilbraham Frederick Evelyn Liardet arrived in Melbourne in 1839 and became a prominent founding figure in Port Melbourne. He established a string of businesses, including the Brighton Pier Hotel, and his name was given to a local street.

Liardet's charming watercolours and sketches present rare illustrations of everyday life in early Melbourne, from the first punt on the Yarra River to the Flagstaff Hill celebrations when Victoria separated from New South Wales.


View of the north shore belongs at the Library

State Library Victoria holds all known significant works by Liardet, and for more than 100 years we have conserved and protected them for all Victorians to discover and enjoy.

View of the north shore, the last-known undocumented work by Liardet, has been held since 1862 in a private collection away from public view. It is a pre-eminent example of Liardet’s work, entirely unique in its scale, detail and ambition to share the vitality and potential of a thriving young city with the world.

With your contribution, we will be able to acquire View of the north shore and undertake the meticulous work needed to preserve this delicate work on paper for the future.

'For 160 years, people have come to the Library to understand Victoria’s past and to imagine its future through the stories, secrets and treasures in our collection.

Now we need your help to bring View of the north shore – and the incredible story behind it – back to life.'

- Kate Torney, CEO, State Library Victoria

I would like to help uncover a piece of Melbourne's history

Donate by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)

You can also donate to the campaign by EFT:

  • Account: Library Board of Victoria
  • Bank: ANZ
  • BSB: 013-160
  • Account number: 46-623-6138
  • Reference: Please use APPEAL17 and your full name as a reference. A receipt will be issued in this name. Please email foundation@slv.vic.gov.au to confirm your EFT donation so we can issue you with a receipt.