• Entry type: Person
  • Entry ID: AWE0621

Russell, Roslyn Valda Louise

(1948 – )
  • Born 23 May, 1948, Hendon, London United Kingdom
  • Occupation Historian


Roslyn Russell is a historian, author, editor and museum consultant who has lived and worked in Canberra since 1982. She holds Bachelor and Masters Honours degrees in History from the University of Sydney, a Graduate Diploma in Applied Science (Cultural Heritage Management) from the University of Canberra, and a PhD in English from the University of New South Wales.

Her published works include Literary Links: Celebrating the Literary Relationship between Australia and Britain, One Destiny! The Federation Story: How Australia Became a Nation (with Philip Chubb), Ever, Manning: Selected Letters of Manning Clark 1938-1991, and The Business of Nature: John Gould and Australia. Editor of several museum magazines in Australia over the period from 2000 to the present, Roslyn has developed museum exhibitions in Canberra, interstate and overseas, including the Museum of Parliament and National Heroes Gallery of Barbados, and has co-edited a book on Caribbean museums, Plantation to Nation: Caribbean Museums and National Identity. She has also worked as a curator at the National Museum of Australia and is a Research Associate in the Museum’s Centre for Historical Research.


  • 2000 - 2000

    Interpretation for Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve Visitor Centre for Environment ACT

  • 2000 - 2000

    Exhibition for Museum of the Riverina, ‘They came from the bush’, about rural Olympians

  • 2000 - 2000

    The Nation’s Garden – thirty years of growing’, an exhibition for the Australian National Botanic Gardens

  • 2000 - 2002

    Co-curator of exhibition for the Centenary of Federation, ‘Belonging: A Century Celebrated’, for National Library of Australia, National Archives of Australia, State Library of New South Wales and State Library of Victoria.

  • 2001 - 2001

    Significance: a guide to assessing the significance of cultural heritage objects and collections, for the Heritage Collections Council, Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts

  • 1997 - 1998

    Project manager for CD ROM project, ‘Stories of Democracy’, for the Curriculum Corporation

  • 1997 - 1998

    Writing text and audiovisual scripting for the Australian War Memorial’s redevelopment of its World War II gallery, with particular responsibility for the development of the interpretation of the Women’s Services

  • 1999 - 1999

    Co-curator (with Stephen Foster) of an exhibition for Old Parliament House, ‘Going My Way?: Australia’s Choice in 1949’, dealing with the election of 1949

  • 1999 - 2001

    Interpretative display for the foyer of Customs House, Canberra

  • 2000 - 1970

    Editor of Museum National for Museums Australia

  • 1994 - 1994

    Significance assessment for National Library of Australia Community Heritage Grants

  • 1991 - 1993

    Curator of ‘Nyngan – Our Stories’, local history exhibition with a focus on the 1990 Nyngan flood

  • 1993 - 1993

    Joint curator of exhibition, ‘ Coming to Canberra’ for the ACT Museums and Galleries Unit and the National Museum of Australia

  • 1993 - 1994

    Curator of ‘Literary Links between Australia and Britain’, a travelling poster exhibition for the National Library of Australia and The British Council

  • 1994 - 1994

    Historical significance assessment of the North Sydney Olympic Pool for North Sydney Council

  • 1993 - 1994

    Historical research and script (with Stephen Foster) for video production, ‘Menzies in his time’ for the Sir Robert Menzies Foundation

  • 1994 - 1995

    Joint curator (with Stephen Foster) of Australian Archives/National Library of Australia exhibition, ‘An Ideal City? The 1912 competition to design Canberra’

  • 1995 - 1995

    Author of commissioned history of the Health Insurance Commission,Building Strength Through Change: Twenty Years of the Health Insurance Commission

  • 1995 - 1997

    Oral history project for the Australian Industrial Property Organisation

  • 1995 - 1995

    Compilation (with Jan Lyall, Stephen Foster and Duncan Marshall) of General Guidelines to Safeguard Documentary Heritage Memory of the World project, UNESCO

  • 1995 - 1997

    Compilation (with Stephen Foster and Susan Marsden) of Federation: The Guide to Records, for Australian Archives

  • 1995 - 1997

    Research and writing for CD ROM, ‘One Destiny! The Federation Story’ and research and writing for a book of the same title (with Philip Chubb, published 1998 by Penguin Australia)

  • 1999 - 2003

    Significance assessment for National Library of Australia Community Heritage Grants

  • 2001 - 2001

    Exhibition for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

  • 1970 - 1974

    Secondary teacher of History, Art History and English with the New South Wales Department of Education

  • 1977 - 1977

    Part-time teacher of Communication subjects with the New South Wales Department of TAFE

  • 1980 - 1981

    Part-time teacher of Communication subjects with the New South Wales Department of TAFE

  • 1982 - 1987

    Research assistant to Emeritus Professor Manning Clarkof the History Department at the Australian National University

  • 1987 - 1990

    Part-time research assistant for the History Department at University College with the Australian Defence Force Academy

  • 1988 - 1990

    Contractor to the Australian Heritage Projects Pty Ltd

  • 1990 - 1991

    Part-time lecturer and tutor in Australian History for Cultural Heritage Management students with the Faculty of Applied Science/Communication at the University of Canberra

  • 1990 - 2001

    Historian, Project Manager and Manager for Australian Heritage Projects (AHP) Pty Ltd

  • 2001 - 2001

    Partner with Marsden Russell Historians

  • 1990 - 1991

    Full-time responsibility for project with Keith Murdoch Sound Archive of Australia in the War 1939-45 for the Australian War Memorial

  • 1991 - 1996

    Editor of the Australian Customs History Journal

  • 1991 - 1994

    Project officer and editor of the Country Education Profiles project for the National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition (NOOSR), Department of Employment, Education and Training

Published resources

  • Conference Proceedings
    • Interpretation and the getting of wisdom: papers from the fourth annual conference of the Interpretation Australia Association, Old Parliament House Canberra, 13-15 November 1995 /compiled by Elizabeth A. Beckman [ie. Beckmann] & Roslyn Russell., Beckman, Elizabeth A and Russell, Roslyn (compiled by), 1995
  • Book
    • Building strength through change : twenty years of the Health Insurance Commission, Russell, Roslyn, 1995
    • Literary links : celebrating the literary relationship between Australia and Britain, Russell, Roslyn, 1997
    • One destiny! : the federation story, how Australia became a nation, Russell, Roslyn and Chubb, Philip, 1998
    • Federation: the guide to records, Foster, S G, Marsden, Susan and Russell, Roslyn, 1998
    • Belonging : a century celebrated, Russell, Roslyn, [2000]
    • Manning Clark House : reflections, Creighton, Trevor; Freeman, Peter and Russell, Roslyn, 2002
    • Our first six : archives of Australia's prime ministers, Marsden, Susan and Russell, Roslyn, c2002
    • Workers, unions and politics, Russell, Roslyn, c1984
    • An ideal city? : the 1912 competition to design Canberra, Reps, John W, 1995
    • Building history : the National Museum of Australia, Susskind, Anne, 2001
  • Resource
  • Book Section
    • House museums in the ACT, Russell, Roslyn, 1997
  • Report
    • General guidelines to safeguard documentary heritage, Foster, Stephen; Lyall, Jan; Marshall, Duncan and Russell, Roslyn, 1995
  • Journal Article
    • Significance: a guide to assessing the significance of cultural heritage objects and collections, Parnell, Megan, 2001
  • Site Exhibition

Archival resources

  • National Library of Australia, Oral History and Folklore Collection
    • Susan Marsden interviewed by Roslyn Russell [sound recording]

Related entries

  • Related Concepts
    • History and Historians