WA Heritage Award win a career highlight for Albany historian Malcolm Traill

Headshot of Sarah Makse
Sarah MakseAlbany Advertiser
Malcolm Traill has been honoured at the Western Australian Heritage Awards.
Camera IconMalcolm Traill has been honoured at the Western Australian Heritage Awards. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

Albany historian Malcolm Traill has taken out a top honour in the 2020 Western Australian Heritage Awards this week, a fitting tribute as he steps down from his post at the Museum of the Great Southern after more than a decade.

Mr Traill was awarded the Professional Contribution prize, earning praise for his devotion to the promotion of Great Southern heritage over his 26-year career.

The jury praised Mr Traill for working “tirelessly, under many hats, to increase the community’s knowledge of both Aboriginal and European stories”.

Mr Traill said the award was the “climax of his career” as he says goodbye to his role as public programs officer at the museum.

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He plans to offer his skills as a freelance historian and focus on his passions of writing and teaching.

“There are so many things that I have on my list that I would like to achieve,” he said.

“This has come at a pretty significant time so I am really thrilled.

“I am very excited because it is recognition of not only what I have done over my career but also all the people who have helped along the way and all the people who I have worked with since I started this gig back in 1994.”

Mr Traill said it was the hope of finding out something new that drove his fruitful career as an historian.

“I guess it’s the thrill of discovery and finding old things,” he said.

“To try and see whether there is anything that hasn’t been picked up in the past and shed some light on Albany’s history.

“I like history because it teaches us about where we came from and hopefully where we are going to in the future.

“There are so many interesting stories and getting down to the individual stories is endlessly fascinating.”

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