• Exploring the Archives: “The Heyes Papers” Copies of British War Diaries and Other Records

    Tuesday 23 May 2017 by .

    Informal Photo of Tasman Heyes, Charles E.W. Bean and his wife Effie A05388

    AWM45 – Copies of British War Diaries and Other Records of the First World War (“The Heyes Papers")by Craig BerelleThis series of posts introduces records created 100 years ago: whythey exist, and how we can help make them available for research.HistoryTasman Heyes served as an agent of the Australian War Records Section (AWRS) abroad, and secured for the Australian Official Histories many valuable military and naval records that describe …

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  • The Centenary of the Australian War Records Section

    Thursday 11 May 2017 by . 2 comments

    HISTORYOne hundred years ago, in May 1917, the Australian War Records Section (AWRS) was formed in London. It is from this date that we trace the formal origins of the Australian War Memorial. Over the next two years the AWRS acquired approximately 25,000 objects, as well as paper records, photographs, film, publications, and works of art. All were brought back to Australia in 1919 and formed the basis of the collection of what would eventually …

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  • Coral Sea, Midway and After

    Thursday 4 May 2017 by . 2 comments

    Crew of the USS Lexington abandoning ship during the battle of Coral Sea, 8 May 1942. AWM 157901.

    Japanese planning created crucial errors. An article by Jonathan Parshall from our official magazine Wartime, issue 59 The battle of Midway has long been the subject of hype: “decisive … the battle that doomed Japan … the most important naval battle of the Second World War”; the list goes on. And yet, with all due respect to the momentous nature of the battle itself, Midway cannot be properly understood in isolation. Instead, it is …

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  • Aboriginal Presence On Gallipoli Grows

    Tuesday 25 April 2017 by . 3 comments

    Lance Corporal Richard Kirby

    Aboriginal presence on Gallipoli grows Written by Michael Bell Lance Corporal Richard Kirby P11678.004 In 2014 the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander soldiers who were known to be involved in the Gallipoli campaign stood at 50 men. This during an era when they weren't recognised as Australian citizens, so for them enlistment was illegal. At present it seems that it …

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  • Nolan Donation Reveals a Deeper Connection to Gallipoli

    Thursday 20 April 2017 by .

    Simpson and His Donkey, Sidney Nolan

    Nolan donation reveals a deeper connection to GallipoliBy Chris WagnerQuite literally, the story behind the recent donation of a Sidney Nolan painting, depicting Simpson and his donkey, has revealed deep and unexpected connections to the Gallipoli campaign.Nolan completed the work as part of a large series of paintings and drawings on the subject of Gallipoli, most of which depicted soldiers and landscapes. Nolan spent 20 years creating a body of…

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  • September 11, World Trade Center photographs purchased by Australian War Memorial

    Tuesday 4 April 2017 by Mel Stubbings. 1 comments

    For those of us who were adults on September 11, 2001, our lives are divided into two halves — the one we lived before these events and everything that has happened since. The images by photographer Richard Drew that the Australian War Memorial decided to buy are extremely emotional — they are powerful, they are significant moments in history and, yes, they are sensitive — but the two images, especially the one of the falling man, say much…

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  • The story of William Charles Westbury Aboriginal Soldier, The Boer War and First World War

    Thursday 30 March 2017 by . 4 comments

    William Charles Westbury. Photo Max Wurfell, Pinaroo Museum

    William Charles Westbury. Photo Max Wurfell, Pinaroo Museum William was born in Mount Gambier, South Australia, in 1878. He was one of three children with his siblings John James A.I.F. 2206 and Sarah also in the family of James Westbury and Ellen Baker, with Ellen being of the local Boandik people. Ellen was the cook and lived at Benara Creek part of Schanck outstation, near Lake Bonney West of Kongorong SA. The family moved often between …

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  • Highlight On Official Records of the First World War: AWM12, Australian Imperial Force Headquarters (London), Administrative Registry Medical/Personal Files, 1914 -18 War

    Monday 27 February 2017 by . 1 comments

    AWM12 5035/2/1

    Highlight on the official records of the First World War is a centenary program highlighting records created 100 years ago, explaining whythey exist and how we can help make them available for research purposes.ProvenanceIn 1915, a small Australian military headquarters had been set up in London by the Australian High Commissioner. Its role was to finance and provision the AIF and to keep records of the location and condition of convalescents …

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  • Changi manuscript by Sir Alexander Russell Downer KBE

    Wednesday 15 February 2017 by .

    cover of Changi manuscript by Sir Alexander Russell Downer KBE

    The book titled ‘Government in Two Worlds: An Introductory Survey of the Governments of Britain and Australia’ was written by Alexander 'Alick' Downer during his captivity as a prisoner of war in Changi, Singapore. A lawyer before the war, Alick Downer, enlisted with the 2/14th Field Regiment and served as a gunner. Following the surrender of Singapore on 15 February 1942, Downer along with close to 15,000 other Australians, was marched into …

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  • Art of Nation: Insightful 'then and now' comparisons

    Friday 10 February 2017 by Emily Wubben.

    George Benson, A ten-minute sketch of Albert Church, c. 1916

    The Memorial’s online, interactive exhibition Art of Nation will enable users to compare field sketches by Australia’s First World War official war artists with contemporary digital imagery of the same locations in Google street view. Comparing ‘then and now’ images encourages a ‘spot the difference’ method of analysis, reminiscent of puzzle books in which images are replicated with minor changes to be discovered. These comparisons …

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