The role of our College Archive team is to find and share stories that give us a window into the past, connecting 125 years of history and community and enriching the lives of our students today. The College Archive began in 1996 at the time of our 100th Anniversary and 25 years later it is still thriving. You can read more about the history of the Archive below.

The Archive is managed by a dedicated group of volunteers. Key tasks include providing research services to staff, alumni and members of the community, as well as holding activities to promote the history and heritage of the College.

It is also the Archivists’ responsibility to ascertain the significance of heritage items, establish the provenance and oversee the Heritage Centre which is located in the Mount St Joseph building — providing an invaluable resource for the College curriculum, particularly in Religious Education and Humanities.

Oral story telling is integral to the explanation of the Mercy journey in Lilydale and the College Archive also has videos which celebrate this aspect of College life (see below). Tours of the Heritage Centre are available each Wednesday. If you have a story to share or would like to inquire about a tour please contact Mary on

“History is an essential means that should be in the forefront of every process of understanding Mercy as a community, and the archives as the important treasury that safeguards the future.”— Delores Liptak RSM

Background to the Archive team at MLMC

Prior to the College Centenary in 1996, Library technician Margaret Farrelly began collecting information on the history of MLMC. This was an invaluable resource for Adrian Reilly who wrote A Century of Mercy after researching archival records at Mercy Centre Alphington. Subsequently, Jan Battaglene (Personal Assistant to Principals Sister Beth Calthorpe, John Goodfellow OAM, Sister Nancy Freddi and Bernard Dobson), took over the role of Archivist. On her retirement, long-serving staff member, Irene McClue was appointed to the role.

In 2006 a volunteer committee under the leadership of College Registrar Patricia Olson set up the College’s first Heritage Centre in the Mansfield House building vacated by the Sisters. Officially opened in August 2006, Mrs McClue noted “the Centre was set up to showcase the work of the Sisters of Mercy in education in Lilydale as well as to tell the story of the College in relation to the history of the area. This was in response to ongoing requests by members of the Community to facilitate the display of records and other heritage and archival material collected over a period of time from a variety of sources”.

When the old Mansfield Building was demolished in 2010 to erect the Year 7 Learning Centre, the Heritage Centre gained a more permanent home in the original 1896 Mount Saint Joseph building. Restoration of the former parlour, entrance hall and Chapel was the first step and the area proved a fitting venue for displaying the continually expanding College Archive dating back to the school’s foundation in 1896.

History is an essential means that should be in the forefront of every process of understanding Mercy as a community, and the archives as the important treasury that safeguards the future.

Delores Liptak RSM

Moira Burgi

Read More

In 2012 our then oldest Old Collegian, Moira Burgi, shared memories of her time at the College, from 1924-1931.

Michael Johnston

Read More

Former staff member Michael Johnston talks about his time at MLMC, from 1981 to 2018.

Sr Beth Calthorpe RSM

Read More

Learn more about the life of former Principal Sr Beth Calthorpe RSM and her time at MLMC.

Italian heritage

Read More

Some of our Old Collegians share stories about their Italian heritage and their time at MLMC.




College Tour - Tuesday 28 March 2023