Museum of Human History

Keys of the world

Come on a journey with us and explore history through keys and the unique stories behind them. Collection open for viewing now.

A key of Secrets

The key to the journal of famous writer, Emilia Smith. Half the journal has been weathered by time but some of her stories remained preserved with the collection

Image of key to Journal

A new home

When I look at this key, I see hope and innocence

Jane Smith
Townsville, Victoria

As a young refugee fleeing her home, this key was one of the few posessions Jane carried with her. She hopes that through her donation others can learn more about her history.

Crumbling Corridors

This key was found in an abandoned mansion and is suspected to be the key to the grand ballroom. Carbon dating methods have determined that the key is over 100 years old, making it one of the first of it’s kind.

A new age for security

Invented by Albert Newton-Maxwell in 1968 this new style of lock lead the way for modern keys, challenging the limits of key innovation.

Image of bike lock key


The key used for the lock

Image of keyhole on bike lock


Hole in the lock for the key

Image of part of bike lock which closes the loop

Locking mechanism

Turning the key secures this part in place

A key of criminal

The key is collected from a young man.
His grandfather was a soldier that guard the prison.
This key was to unlock the lock of the cell.
The prison was abandoned in 1990
so his grandfather keep the key until now.

Image of the old style key

Thieves’ house

This was collected from a housekeeper,
he said this key is belong to a wooden door lock
and thieves always steal his house like there is no doors.
So he changed his door lock to fingerprint lock.

Image of of a single door key

Beautiful reminiscence

The lock and key is donated by a old couple,
the used the lock and key to lock a wooden box that store photos.
However the box and photos are turned to
dust and ashes after a fire accident.
Only the lock and key are completed.

Image of of the lock and key seperately

Missing owner

This key is belong to a office worker,
he use this key to unlock car to work every weekdays.
But one day the key owner disappeared,
leave the key stick in his car.