Dr Anastasia Dukova is the professional historian behind Digital Colonial Brisbane project. Anastasia is a policing historian specialising in the history of municipal policing, with a primary focus on Ireland, colonial Australia and Canada. She is particularly interested in the impact of Irish policing experience on the development of colonial policing models, both state and municipal. Anastasia is an Adjunct Research Fellow at Griffith University Centre for Social and Cultural Research and a Visiting Fellow at the newly opened Harry Gentle Resource Centre. Previously, she held Fellowships at the Griffith Criminology Institute and the University of Toronto, Canada. Anastasia read history of crime and policing at Trinity College Dublin; supported through the Irish Research Council postgraduate scholarship scheme, she completed her doctorate in 2012.
Anastasia's recent monograph, A History of the Dublin Metropolitan Police and Its Colonial Legacy (Palgrave Macmillan), explores the nineteenth-century origins of the Dublin Metropolitan Police and analyses its influence on the colonial forces by positioning it within an imperial context.
Digital Colonial Brisbane would not have been possible without the tireless support of the expert staff of Queensland Police Museum.
The Queensland Police Museum, established over a century ago for education of policemen, today is an accessible and valued museum of national standing that collects and explores Queensland’s policing history. It actively documents, collects and preserves the rich depth of history that describes policing in this state since 1859. Through the collections and exhibitions the museum enhances the public image of the Queensland Police Service and fosters pride in its achievements in the wider community. The story it tell also describes today’s innovative, progressive and responsive Queensland Police Service. The museum uses its resources, exhibitions and public programs to investigate and compare issues faced by police officers of times past and of today.
Curator Lisa Jones has administered the Queensland Police Museum since 1997. She holds a Masters of Museum Studies and uses her 30 years of museum experience to manage the QPM collections and exhibitions.
Assistant Curator Virginia Gordon has been with the QPM since 2000. She holds a Graduate Diploma of Museum Studies and uses her considerable skills with historical research to answers enquiries from within the QPS and from the general public. Virginia also manages the uniform collection.
Senior Museum Assistant Duncan Leask has been part of the museum family since 1995. His skills lie in conducting research public and sourcing information from the museum's collections for both internal and external clients.
Museum Assistant Georgia Grier manages the Education Program, the QPM social media portals and conducts research for both internal and external clients. She is on track to complete a Graduate Certificate of Museum Studies in late 2016.
This unique project draws together expertise across disciplines and utilises a variety of media available (virtual and print) to maximise the reach, share collated information and raise awareness of local historical collections and Brisbane’s heritage. As the project develops it will consolidate a large scope of historical information on aspects of urban life in Brisbane from 1859 to 1901, making it available to members of the public who are interested in local history and in the societal and political issues of that time, and of course policing-related issues.
The development of online genealogical resources has generated a great deal of interest in family history. Digital Colonial Brisbane will help to contextualise the findings of people who have traced their family history to Australia in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Details about life on the streets of Brisbane; the impact of social, economic and legal changes; the attitudes of the public toward the police, (and of the police toward the public) will help to fill in the background of many family trees. For those whose ancestors were directly involved in the events featured in this project (as policemen, accused or convicted criminals, judges, or victims of crime), the historical record may complement or contradict family versions of events and personalities.
As the migration figures for the nineteenth century show, the British colonies experienced an extensive influx of migrants from Ireland. A significant proportion of Irish migrants, many with previous experience in law enforcement, brought their knowledge and skill with them, greatly enabling the process of organisational knowledge transfer between the forces in Ireland, such as the Dublin Metropolitan Police and the Royal Irish Constabulary, and in the colonies. If you would like to learn more about Irish heritage of the Queensland Police and its personnel, see Anastasia Dukova's monograph, A History of the Dublin Police and its Colonial Legacy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016).