• eX de Medici: exploring camouflage through a Special Forces helmet

    Wednesday 30 July 2014 by Tamsin Hong.

    eX de Medicis

    eX de Medicis "Australia, special forces (everywhere, current), Aust flag 2010", depicts a Special Forces cutaway helmet in its current colour scheme. ART94355 Currently on display are two watercolours by Canberra based artist eX de Medici depicting a helmet used by a member of the Australian Special Forces during his deployment to Afghanistan between 2008-2009. These works were two…

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  • Stitches in time: rehabilitation embroidery in the AWM collection

    Wednesday 30 July 2014 by Kerry Neale. 5 comments

    Rehabilitation embroidery : Private S A Chivas, 14 Machine Gun Company, AIF

    Many people tend to associate embroidery and needlework with women and the comfort of the homefront, but men are also known to pick up the needle and thread, especially it seems during times of war. Whether stitched as a way to pass the time in a prisoner of war camp, to record events, places and names, or as rehabilitation therapy in military hospitals, embroidered items have many interesting stories to share. To celebrate World Embroidery Day, …

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  • Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) 1916 outdoor dress

    Tuesday 29 July 2014 by Ashleigh Wadman. 2 comments

    Studio portrait of Sister Lalah Mary Burke in the 1916 outdoor dress.

    This is one in a series of blogs that covers the basic aspects of Australian uniforms during the First World War. There is a great diversity between nursing uniforms of the First World War. This variety is due to the fact that nursing uniforms were not centrally manufactured or issued in this war. Instead, nurses were given a uniform allowance to equip themselves and were allowed to make their own uniforms if they chose. This, and tailoring …

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  • They had to remember they were soldiers, albeit female

    Tuesday 29 July 2014 by Suzy Nunes. 1 comments

    View looking west showing the compounds of the 12th Australian Prisoner of War Camp at Cowra, with the Group Headquarter buildings in the foreground.

    By August 1944 there were 2,223 Japanese prisoners of war in Australia. Of these 1,104 were housed in Camp B of No. 12 Prisoner of War Compound near Cowra, in the central west of New South Wales. The Italian, Japanese, Taiwanese and Korean prisoners of war interned at Cowra were treated in accordance with the Geneva Conventions. But relations between the Japanese prisoners of war and their guards from the 22nd Garrison Battalion were poor, due …

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  • Collection Detection answer #11

    Tuesday 29 July 2014 by John Holloway.

    Thank you to everyone who submitted their guess for last week's Collection Detection. As promised, here is the answer: Front view of the mobile shield. REL/12494 It is a mobile shield or “one man tank”, behind which allied soldiers on the Western Front could creep forward while protected by bulletproof steel. By 1914, advances in technology had revolutionised warfare, with new weapons such as the machine gun giving defenders a vital …

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  • Collection Detection #11

    Thursday 24 July 2014 by John Holloway.

    What is it? Examine this object and tell us what you think it is in the comments section below. We will post the answer and the full story next week! This is #11 in the Education team's Collection Detection series, where we look at an unusual collection item and the story behind it.

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  • Goetz’s gaffe

    Wednesday 23 July 2014 by Ashleigh Wadman. 3 comments

    The first issue of the Lusitania medallion. The obverse can be viewed by via the link to the catalogue record.

    The National Collection is rich with material and stories relating to wartime propaganda. When thinking about this it is only natural to recall the graphic printed pamphlets and posters depicting strong emotionally charged messages eliciting support for the war and suspicion of the enemy. One vehicle for propaganda which is perhaps less well known is that of the medallion. During the First World War medallions were produced not only as …

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  • The Australian Imperial Force (AIF) headwear 1914-1918

    Friday 18 July 2014 by Dianne Rutherford. 8 comments

    First World War slouch hat with wool puggaree and rising Sun badge.

    This is thethird in a series of blogs about First World War uniforms and covers the basic aspects of the Australian Imperial Force headwear during the First World War. The most distinctive and recognisable article of clothing worn by the Australian soldier was the khaki felt slouch hat. This item of headwear had been worn in Australia for some years before the turn of the century and was also popular elsewhere in the world. A similar hat was worn…

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  • The Australian War Memorial will partner with the Australian National University (ANU) in a major ARC funded research project into Borneo in the Second World War

    Monday 14 July 2014 by Robyn van Dyk. 7 comments

    In a three year ARC funded research project titled: Beyond Allied Histories: Dayak Memories of World War II in Borneo the ANU and the Memorial will provide new research into how different groups of people experienced the Second World War in Borneo. The research team combines anthropological expertise from Dr Christine Helliwell of the College of Arts and Social Sciences at ANU with curatorial expertise from Robyn van Dyk, Head of the Research …

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  • Captured in paint - a 69 year old mystery solved.

    Monday 7 July 2014 by Garth O'Connell. 22 comments

    Reception desk at Gowrie House, Eastbourne by Australian Official War Artist Stella Bowen.

    The end of armed conflictin the European theatre of the Second World War in May 1945 sawtens of thousands of western Allied Prisoners of War from all over the worldbe repatriated to the United Kingdom for their first steps in their eventualreturn to their families and friends. Among them were several thousand Australians, who in the course of the war in North Africa and Europe,found themselvesin German or Italian run prisoner of war camps. For …

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