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Our History

history

Hobart City Mission has a long history of caring for the people of Hobart.

Established in 1852, the Hobart City Mission was the first City Mission in Australia and is the third oldest Mission in the world. At the time, poverty and vice were prevalent in Hobart Town. The London City Mission had been operating for seventeen years and a number of concerned citizens saw the need for similar work in Hobart.

On November, 23rd, 1852, a public meeting was held at the Mechanics' Hall with the object of forming a city mission, not associated with any particular denomination of church, and based on the London City Mission model.  In December, the Hobart City Mission appointed its first missionary, Mr H.B. Giles.

From the start, the Mission held worship services at the Mechanics' Institute, in chapels and school rooms. Its missionaries visited homes, befriending those in need, providing groceries and clothing and assisting the poor in any way required.

The Mission played an important role in the early education system, establishing a 'Ragged School', which provided an education, clothing and assistance for neglected and destitute children and helping to keep them from poverty and crime. This continued until the government introduced a free education system.

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