Child’s model of early Australian settler’s hut near Mudgee, NSW, made c.1852

Made by Rushby, Charlotte in Mudgee, New South Wales, 1857.

This is a delightfully naive model of an early Australian settler’s slab hut. Made of clay, wood and mixed media, it was created by 19 year old Charlotte Rushby (1833-1914) living near the NSW town of Mudgee in about 1852. She is also said to have made a model of an Aboriginal camp near the settlement as well. According to the family, both the models travelled to England in 1900 for display in an exhibition.

Charlotte was a daughter of Michael Rushby and Elizabeth Holmes who arrived in New Sout...


Object No.


Physical Description

House model, early Australian settler's slab hut, clay / wood / mixed media, made by [Charlotte Rushby], Mudgee, New South Wales, Australia, c. 1852. ( Key at D2.key/80)

A child's model of an Australian nineteenth century settler's slab hut executed in a naive style. The model is on a base board painted with ochre and sprinkled in parts with chaff. A wooden model of a settler's hut of vernacular single cell type with a lean-to and articulated chimney. The vertical sectioned walls are painted white. The hipped roof is constructed of [eucalyptus] sp. bark and secured by an overlaid grid of sticks. At the rear of the board is a backdrop of dried native species branches. Set on either side of the door opening is unfired earthenware painted figures of a man and woman in mid-nineteenth century costume. Set all over the base are similarily made figures, from left to right: 2 cocks, 2 hens, 5 geese, 4 goslings placed around a modelled trough, 1 cow, 1 calf, 1 sheep, 1 dog, 1 sow, 4 piglets, 4 ducks placed around a trough, 1 hen, 5 chickens, another dog, 1 horse and 6 hens.



515 mm


815 mm


560 mm



The model was reputedly made by Charlotte Rushby of her father's hut located at McDonald's Creek, Mudgee, New South Wales. The model was made around 1857.


Rushby, Charlotte 1857



The Rushby family arrived in the colony as free settlers in 1840 and settled at McDonald's Creek, near Mudgee, where Michael Rushby established a farm and built a slab hut with a bark roof, lean-to and chimney. His daughter Charlotte commemorated the family settlement by making this model from 'found' materials.


Credit Line

Gift of Mr A J Stone, 1967

Acquisition Date

18 December 1967

Cite this Object


Child's model of early Australian settler's hut near Mudgee, NSW, made c.1852 2018, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 13 November 2018, <>


{{cite web |url= |title=Child's model of early Australian settler's hut near Mudgee, NSW, made c.1852 |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=13 November 2018 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}


This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.

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