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Brisbane Stock Exchange boards conservation

Brisbane Stock Exchange boards conservation

In preparation for display in Landmarks, the Museum's conservators have given this selection of trading boards from the Brisbane Stock Exchange some special treatment.

When trading boards were replaced by a computerised system on 28 September 1990, members of the exchange left the day's final prices on the boards to mark the important occasion. Remarkably, the powdery chalk marks have survived for over 20 years in storage, but were too fragile to go on permanent display. To prevent any loss and retain this moment in time, conservators used a vaporiser to spray a fine adhesive mist over the chalk marks. This treatment improved the chalk's adhesion to the boards and enables easier maintenance and cleaning of the display.

The people who ran back and forwards in front of the trading boards, marking up bids and offers, were called 'chalkies'. In Brisbane, two chalkies were responsible for around 30 metres of trading board space that listed around 500 stocks under their three-letter code.

All photography by Jason McCarthy.