The Melbourne Athenaeum. Established as the Melbourne Mechanics' Institute 12 November 1839. The Melbourne Mechanics' Institute was founded in 1839 with Mr Charles Joseph LaTrobe, Superintendent of the District of Port Phillip and Lieutenant-Governor of the Colony of Victoria, as Patron. Captain William Lonsdale as President, and the Rev. James Forbes as Secretary. The present site was purchased on 13 August 1840. The Institute became the Melbourne Mechanics' Institute and School of Arts in 1846 and the Melbourne Athenaeum on 10 February 1873. As part of the 165th birthday celebrations, this plaque, No. 13 in the MIV series, was unveiled on 24 October 2005 by John Landy, A.C., MBE Governor of Victoria