• "I'm 21 to-day and I've never been 21 before."

    Saturday 21 March 2015 by Meagan Nihill. 6 comments

    How did you celebrate your 21st birthday? Although turning 18 might be the more meaningful legal milestone these days, for many, reaching the age of 21 is still an important rite of passage: a symbolic entrance into true adulthood. As a result, 21st birthdays are usually a big event, celebrated with friends and family, laughter, drinks, and speeches. One hundred years ago today, camped in the desert outside Cairo – half a world away from his …

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  • So far from home: sending and receiving mail in the trenches

    Wednesday 18 March 2015 by Theresa Cronk. 5 comments

    The arrival of the first AIF mail of 161 bags at Mena, Egypt. The non-appearance of this mail in Egypt caused a great deal of talk and anxiety amongst the Australian troops. It had been labelled to GPO London and subsequently returned from there, 13 January 1915.

    Imagine if you were unable to contact loved ones by telephone, email or via any other communication strategy now available in today’s digital age. No longer is it possible to hop in your car and drive down the road to visit friends and family. Instead, you have sailed for at least 4 weeks aboard a troopship to a foreign land. And there is no indication as to when, or if, you will see loved ones again. In January 1915, an oft-repeated subject in…

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  • Vale Peter Anthony Ward

    Wednesday 18 March 2015 by David Gist. 11 comments

    Yesterday afternoon, Peter Ward passed away after a long illness. Peter is best known for his work as an official army photographer, both film and still, in Vietnam from 1969 to 1970. The Photographs, Film and Sound Section of the Australian War Memorial offer a small sample of his work from the National Collection. WAR/70/0018/VN During this period of the centenary of Anzac, it is easy to …

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  • Highlight on official records of the First World War: AWM8 - Unit Embarkation Rolls

    Monday 16 March 2015 by Craig Berelle. 5 comments

    Highlight on official records of the First World War is a centenary program of posts highlighting those records created 100 years ago, why they exist and how we can help make these essential records available for research purposes. The 9th Battalion was among the first infantry units raised for the AIF during the First World War. It was the first battalion recruited in Queensland. …

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  • Establishing Gallipoli's Graves

    Wednesday 11 March 2015 by Dianne Rutherford. 12 comments

    The Beach Cemetery 1915.

    The recent film, The Water Diviner has focused attention on the amazing work of the Graves Registration Unit (GRU) and Imperial War Graves Commission (IWGC - now Commonwealth War Graves Commission) from late 1918 to the mid-1920s at Gallipoli. The Beach Cemetery 1915. H03479 During the early stages of the Gallipoli campaign, the recording of burials was haphazard but later, efforts…

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  • Long flights on Black Cats

    Saturday 7 March 2015 by Daniel McGlinchey. 2 comments

    RAAF consolidated Catalina flying boat (A24-362) of no 43 Squadron.

    RAAF consolidated Catalina flying boat (A24-362) of no 43 Squadron. 128022 A Consolidated PBY Catalina aircraft, RAAF serial no. A24-40, coded OX-A, of No. 43 Squadron RAAF, up for repairs at Bowen, Queensland. P08233.007 “The flights were long…up to 20 hours flying and we lost friends, but we helped keep the …

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  • Recent donation of rare watercolours by John Brack

    Wednesday 4 March 2015 by Cherie Prosser.

    John Brack, [Map instruction], 1945, pencil and watercolour on paper.

    Recent donation of rare watercolours made by John Brack while in the army during the Second World War. John Brack, [Map instruction], 1945, pencil and watercolour on paper. ART96398 In 2014, the Australian War Memorial received a generous donation of twenty drawings and watercolours by the Australian modernist artist John Brack (1920—1999). This donationis …

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  • Ceramic poppies from the Tower of London come to the Memorial

    Tuesday 3 March 2015 by Eleni Holloway. 4 comments

    Ceramic poppies from the Tower of London’s Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red centenary installation

    The Military Heraldry Technology section has recently received two ceramic poppies from the Tower of London’s Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red centenary installation for the National Collection. The evocative art installation was on display in the Tower of London’s moat from 5th August to 11th November 2014. 888, 246 individually handmade poppies ‘represented a British military fatality during the war’ and progressively filled the …

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  • Sing us a song...

    Monday 2 March 2015 by Stephanie Hume. 1 comments

    The Australian War Memorial holds a growing collection of sheet music which currently includes over 900 titles. The collection includes both individual pieces, and compilations of sheet music. The date range of this collection extends from the 1850s through to the mid-2000s. Of these approximately 250 pieces relate to the First World War. Some of the music held in the Memorial’s collection was written by service people themselves, either …

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  • Rare donation of book signed by Gallipoli veterans

    Thursday 19 February 2015 by .

    His Excellency Mr Stephen Brady AO CVO Australian Ambassador to the French Republic hands over rare Gallipoli book to Dr Brendan Nelson Director of the War Memorial

    On 18 February 2015, His Excellency Mr Stephen Brady AO CVO Australian Ambassador to the French Republic, donated to the Memorial a copy of Alan Moorehead’s book Gallipoli. The significance of this book is that itwas signed by Gallipoli veterans on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of their return to Anzac Cove. His Excellency Mr Brady was fortunate enough to be travelling with the veterans at the time and asked them to sign a copy of the …

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