• Wartime records of General John Monash available online

    Thursday 26 June 2014 by Robyn van Dyk. 5 comments

    General John Monash is considered one of the war’s outstanding commanders. Monash was an avid collector, and his papers held at the Memorial give a comprehensive view of his wartime military career: from his command of the 4th Australian Brigade on Gallipoli to the Australian Corps in 1918, and then his role as Director General of Demobilisation and Repatriation of the AIF at war’s end. His handwritten notes, diaries, letters, draft orders, …

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  • Collection Detection #10

    Friday 20 June 2014 by John Holloway. 2 comments

    What is it? Examine this object and tell us what you think it is - or what it came from - in the comments section below. We will post the answer and the full story next week! This is #10 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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  • First World War archives on Twitter

    Friday 13 June 2014 by Vanessa Wright.

    On June 10 the Memorial participated in a Twitter event as part of International Archives Day, organised by Ask Archivists and Follow an Archive. Archives, museums and libraries from all over the world searched their collections for archive material relating to the First World War and posted it on Twitter using the hashtag #ww1archives. You can read about how the day went on the Ask Archivists blog and read all the tweets here. Unfortunately, we …

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  • P-39 Airacobras in defence of Australia

    Friday 13 June 2014 by . 7 comments

    Probably Laverton, Vic. C. 1942. A WAAAF technical trainee takes a close look at the nose of a Bell Airacobra fighter aircraft at RAAF Station Laverton.

    When we consider the many aircraft type which defended the skies above Australia and her territories, the P-40 Kittyhawk (Warhawk in American service) immediately springs to mind. Indeed, the Kittyhawk would arguably be one of the most important fighters in service with the RAAF during the Second World War. Though many veterans who served in the Northern Territory will recall with fondness, the sound of Merlin engines over the top end with the …

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  • The war in Papua New Guinea did not start with Kokoda - Eagles of the Southern Sky

    Friday 6 June 2014 by . 5 comments

    For some readers, it may come as a surprise that war in Papua and New Guinea did not start with fighting on the Kokoda Trail in July of 1942. This is partly due to a plethora of books which cover this important land campaign; yet fail to fully integrate the air war into the story. An exception to that statement is Lex McAulay’s Blood Iron which made a creditable attempt to inform the reader of what was occurring in the skies above the track. …

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  • They also served: why D-Day matters to Australia

    Friday 6 June 2014 by Lachlan Grant. 1 comments

    Flight Sergeant Fred Wood with the chief gendarme in a Norman village. A fitter with the RAAF, Wood was in charge of maintenance of the Spitfires of No. 453 Squadron and was Mentioned in Despatches for his service in Normandy.

    Flight Sergeant Fred Wood with the chief gendarme in a Norman village. A fitter with the RAAF, Wood was in charge of maintenance of the Spitfires of No. 453 Squadron and was Mentioned in Despatches for his service in Normandy. 042284 Seventy years ago this week, the largest invasion force in history sailed towards the shores of Normandy in France. D-Day, June 6, 1944, has become one…

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  • Anzac voices highly commended at the MAGNA awards

    Thursday 29 May 2014 by Robyn van Dyk. 2 comments

    Anzac voices features treasures from the Memorial’s archives

    The Australian War Memorial is excited to announce that it has won highly commended for the temporary exhibition ANZAC voices at the Museum Galleries National Awards (MAGNA) in Launceston, Tasmania last week. MAGNA celebrates the best exhibition work from around Australia. The Memorial would like to thank the Anzac voices exhibition team, Wingrove design and the Definitive Group for transforming the Memorial's Special Exhibition Gallery to tell …

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  • The Australian Imperial Force (AIF) Other ranks uniform 1914-1918

    Friday 23 May 2014 by Dianne Rutherford. 3 comments

    Portrait of a soldier wearing a pre-war citizen forces uniform.

    This is thesecond in a series of blogs about First World War uniforms and covers the basic aspects of the Australian Imperial Force other ranksuniform during the First World War. At 11pm, on 4 August 1914, English time, Britain declared war on Germany. Australia immediately pledged her support and offered an initial force of 20,000 men. The offer was quickly accepted. Portrait of a soldier wearing a …

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  • Collection Detection answer #9

    Thursday 22 May 2014 by John Holloway. 1 comments

    Thank you to everyone who submitted their guess for this week. As promised, here is the answer: It is a German flechette dart – a sharpened projectile weapon which Australian soldier William Howie found lodged in a case of ration biscuits while in the trenches at Gallipoli. A lethal shower of these darts had just been dropped over Victoria Gully by an enemy aircraft. Early in the First World War, huge numbers of flechettes were dropped from …

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  • Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS) 1914 - 15 outdoor dress

    Wednesday 14 May 2014 by Ashleigh Wadman. 9 comments

    Nurses prior to boarding HMAT Orsova. Note the rather useless bonnet of the 1914 outdoor dress and the variations in collars and fabric colour.

    This is the first 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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