Charles Brothers

President 1949 

Dr Charles Brothers was a foundation member of the Australasian Association of Psychiatrists (AAP) and was elected President in 1949, a fitting tribute for the doctor and Director of Mental Hygiene who had made an exceptional contribution to Australian psychiatry at the time.

In 1927, Dr Brothers took up his residency in at the Royal Melbourne Hospital where he remained until 1936. He then crossed back to his much-loved state of Tasmania taking up the position of Medical Superintendent to Lachlan Park Mental Hospital. Dr Brothers became the Director of Mental Hygiene in Tasmania in 1946 and was also Honorary Psychiatrist to the Royal Hobart and Launceston General Hospitals. During this time he studied and became an expert on Huntington’s Chorea, particularly in the state of Tasmania.

In 1951 he took up the role of Deputy Chairman of the newly-formed Victorian Mental Health Authority, where he was in charge of monitoring and improving patient and staff conditions within Victoria's mental health institutions.

With a keen interest in antiques and history he began collecting psychiatric paraphernalia, including artefacts, records, photographs, and interviews. Through word of mouth the collection greatly expanded as institutions began sending Charles their old artefacts directly. The collection reached over 700 objects and was housed in the Charles Brothers Museum at the Mental Health Library. The Museum closed in the late 1980s and most of its items were split between the Public Records Office of Victoria, Museum Victoria and the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

More information

Presidential address: Psychiatry and Eugenics. Med J Aust 1950; 2:211.




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