State Library and Tasmanian Archives Blog

House hunting in Launceston

A black and white photo of a line of 3 houses as seen from the street
Photograph – Invermay – houses – 17 and 19 Northcote Street

Do you recognise these historic houses from your neighbourhood?

​We have recently digitised a series of photographs of houses around Launceston. They were taken by Stephen Spurling III in the early twentieth century, but not all of them have been identified.

A black and white photo of a house with tall shrubs out front as seen from the street.
Photograph – Launceston – house – unidentified, TAHO: NS3484/1/68

If you know the locations of these houses (or happen to find them while exploring Google streetview), you can let us know by adding your comments in our catalogue – see instructions below.

  1. Search just the unidentified photos or browse the whole series of Spurling’s house photos.
  2. Click on the item in the catalogue. More details will pop up.
  3. At the top of the window is a user comments tab.
An example of the details screen when clicking an item. Tabs on the screen read: "Details, User comments" Details is selected and show some details about the item selected.
  1.  You can make comments by logging in via Facebook, Twitter or Google+by creating your own Disqus account – Choose “SIGN UP WITH DISQUS” below the comments box.
A window with the "user comments" Tab selected"
A black and white photo of a house with a fence as seen from the street. a bicycle is parked out front.
Photograph – Launceston – house – Invermay, TAHO: NS3484/1/78
A house on a small hill seen from the street. a man stands on the balcony.
Photograph – Launceston – house – Wellington Street (?), TAHO: NS3484/1/91
A shop front as seen from the other side of the street. Text on the shop sign reads: "S. Lawrence"
Photograph – Launceston – unidentified location – shop, TAHO: NS3484/1/2

You can use the comment box to share any information about our collections. Search for more unidentified buildings in our catalogue, review a book, tell us about a person in the Names Index, or share the history of a place in a picture. Happy house hunting!


  • Jessica is a Librarian for the State Library and Tasmanian Archives.

8 thoughts on “House hunting in Launceston”

  1. Ross says:

    Invermay house is where Websters are now

  2. Jill Edwards says:

    Photograph – Launceston – unidentified location – shop, TAHO: NS3484/1/2
    This building is 94-96 Wellington Street. My parents, Bon and Kath Harper bought this bakery in approx. 1944. On their retirement the business was bought by a cousin (not sure of their names) who in turn eventually sold the building to Ken Davies. I was born in 1945. It was known as Harper’s Bakery and I believe the signage was Central Bakery. The building was double frontage and two stories high with the family living quarters being behind and above the shop. The bakery and other outbuildings were to the rear with a laneway leading to Canning Street. My father used a horse and cart initially to do deliveries. The interior walls and ceilings were lath and plaster and I recall a ceiling would occasionally collapse in the middle of the night. The nails were square from recollection. The walls were covered in many layers of wall paper. The oven was wood fired until Dad had it converted to oil. They are both now passed away. Dad’s father had a bakery in Charles Street.

  3. Janice Gaffel says:

    I’m not sure if this is the correct place to leave this message or not….sorry in advance. I’m doing our family tree and in 2015 I visited Launceston and Carr Villa Cemetery to ‘catch-up’ with some rellies. My paternal Grandmother (Teresa Columba CLAY) was born in Launceston on 5 November 1910 and lived at 69 Fredrick St. which I now believe has a Pathologist on that Lot (??) I would be most appreciative if in your Archives, you may have a photo of that residence as it was back then.

  4. Lel says:

    The invermay house could very well be Herbert st. 72….we rented it for awhile and it was on the corner of Herbert and another that I can’t remember!

  5. Sue McClarron says:

    Hi Jess, Do you have a list of the houses in numerical order? I notice 2 shops in Wellington St are numbered 60-something, and there is another unidentified shop numbered 60-something.

    • Jess Walters says:

      Hi Sue. No, we don’t have a numbered list. So far we don’t know what those numbers refer to.

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