Dr Sarah

Dr Sarah Hayes


College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce

Humanities and Social Sciences

Department of Archaeology and History

Melbourne (Bundoora)


BArchaeol Flinders; BA (Hons) La Trobe; PhD La Trobe



Membership of professional associations

Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology; Australian Historical Association

Area of study


Brief profile

Sarah Hayes is an historical archaeologist who has spent over a decade researching 19th-century Melbourne through discarded possessions, building remains and personal histories. Her current research for her Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award is on how the gold rush shaped quality of life in Victoria and the factors that determine individual participation in employment and society. Sarah’s previous research has focused on class construction and social mobility in early Melbourne. In addition to her research, Sarah has worked as a tutor at La Trobe University, as an artefact specialist in consulting archaeology and in the management of moveable heritage in the museum and cultural heritage contexts.

Research interests

Historical Archaeology

- Material culture, class distinctions, social mobility, the gold rush, quality of life

Recent publications

Hayes, S. 2017, Gold Rush Victoria was as Wasteful as we are Today, The Conversation, 29 June.

Hayes, S. 2017, A Golden Opportunity: Mayor Smith and Melbourne’s emergence as a global city, International Journal of Historical Archaeology, Online First DOI: 10.1007/s10761-017-0418-1.

Hayes, S. and B. Minchinton, 2016, 'Melbourne’s Waste Management History and Cesspit Formation Processes: Evidence from Little Lon', Australian Archaeology, 82(1): 12-24.

Hayes, S. 2014, Good Taste, Fashion, Luxury: A genteel Melbourne family and their rubbish. Studies in Australasian Historical Archaeology 5, Sydney University Press, Sydney.

Hayes, S. 2014, A Doomed Business: The Material Culture of Ann Jones and the Glenrowan Inn, Australasian Historical Archaeology, 32: 37-46.

Hayes, S. 2011, Gentility in the Dining and Tea Service Practices of Early Colonial Melbourne's ‘Established Middle Class’, Australasian Historical Archaeology 29: 33-44.

Hayes, S. 2011, Amalgamation of Archaeological Assemblages: experiences from the Commonwealth Block project, Melbourne, Australian Archaeology, 73: 13-24.

Smith C. and S. Hayes, 2010, Managing the Commonwealth Block Archaeological Assemblage: an Australian case study, Collections: A Journal for Museums and Archives Professionals, 6(3): 171-187.

Hayes, S. 2007, Consumer Practice at Viewbank Homestead, Australasian Historical Archaeology 25: 87-103.

Hayes, S. 2005, Yorktown: the cultural landscape of the first European settlement in the North of Tasmania, The Artefact 28: 4-14.

Research projects

An Archaeology of Quality of Life in Victoria’s Gold Rush Era, 1851-1880 (ARC DECRA)

Suburban Archaeology: Approaching the Archaeology of the Middle Class in 19th-Century Melbourne (ARC Discovery)

A Historical Archaeology of the Commonwealth Block, 1850-1950 (ARC Linkage)