We are commemorating the 90th Anniversary of the Armistice this year, which presents a timely opportunity to look at what soldiers were doing on the 11th of November throughout the duration of the First World War. The soldiers go about their duties not knowing that in the future, it would be the special day to remember those who fought and died for our country in war and armed conflict.
Almost a century ago this Saturday, a Welcome Home function was held at the Sydney Town Hall for members of the NSW Cadets Coronation Contingent. The cadets, part of the Australian Coronation Contingent, had just returned from attending the London coronation of King George V, held on 22 June 1911.
The Research Centre receives regular telephone calls and emails from military vehicle enthusiasts – restorers and collectors - from all over Australia. Occasionally they make it into the Research Centre at the Memorial, like the proud Jeep owner I met this week.
Embroidered silk postcards were first made in 1900 with popularity peaking during the First World War. Cards were generally embroidered on strips of silk mesh by French women. They were then cut and mounted on postcards.
What does a twenty-three year old wag of a soldier say in his defence, when facing yet another court martial for going AWOL during the First World War?
If you're Private Albert Stipek, the words come easily: "I met some friends and went away with them. I had no idea the Battalion was going to the Line. I thought it was going out for a spell". Nevertheless, he had absented himself from the 51st Battalion for nearly two months.
Most people like to bring home a souvenir from their travels and soldiers in the First World War were no exceptions. The First World War led to great movements of people across the world, but especially through Europe. Many of these people ended up in Great Britain at one time or another. Despite difficulties in wartime, British companies still managed to produce a myriad of souvenirs for the visitors as reminders of their time in Britain, or as a gift for a loved one.