Restoring the dreams of colonial entrepreneurs
The worn leather cover gives few hints of the treasures within. The faded label reads ‘Trade Marks Register, No. 1’. Inside are trademarks registered in New South Wales from as early as 1865. Some are colourful works of art; others merely hastily-drawn product names. There are beer labels, flattened bottle caps, and advertisements for potions that promise to cure all manner of ailments. The trademarks were glued in the register, and their details duly recorded by a clerk.
Each colony had its own laws about trademarks, copyright and patents. After Federation, the registration of trademarks became a Commonwealth responsibility, administered by the Trade Marks Office.
Full article available at National Archives of Australia