James Harrison
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James Harrison exhibition opens in Geelong

Geelong Design Week is hosting an exhibition about James Harrison at Barwon Grange from Saturday, March 20 until Sunday, March 28.

The exhibition is titled James Harrison’s Momentous Achievements – models, medals, memorabilia and explores Harrison’s life from 1816–1893. He was the first to create ice via mechanical means, and the founder of the Geelong Advertiser.

Harrison emigrated to Australia from Scotland in 1837, and was a printer by trade. After founding the Advertiser in 1840, he realised the sulfuric ether on printing presses could have other uses.

This led to experimentation with the ether and a whorl coil, sourced from a heating apparatus. Through a partnership with blacksmith John Scott, he would later establish an ice works on the banks of the Barwon River at Rocky Point. 

The exhibition follows his extraordinary life as he became a member of the Geelong Council, made the first attempt to ship frozen meat from Australia to Britain, founded the Victoria Ice Works and much more.

The exhibition also features models of refrigeration machinery, Harrison’s original notes and even the cigar box he used to save money to come to Australia. His descendants have loaned most of the memorabilia for the duration of the exhibition.

As the first to create ice via mechanical means and laying the foundation for the Australian HVAC&R industry, AIRAH celebrates Harrison each year on April 17 for James Harrison Day, and by presenting the James Harrison Medal at the AIRAH Awards.

Fore more information about the exhibition and to register for it, click here.

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