• Rock n’ Roll and the first Radio RAAF Butterworth, Malaysia

    Wednesday 9 December 2009 by Pen Roberts. 3 comments

    “’Rock Around the Clock’ took the place by storm,” recalls Doug Lewin. “People in Butterworth and Penang loved it.” This was 1956 and the global hit by “Bill Haley and the Comets” was broadcast through a small radio station set up by the men of RAAF No. 2 Construction Squadron at Butterworth in Malaysia. The squadron was there to construct an airfield strip in Butterworth for the British during the Malayan Emergency. They were …

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  • Wedding Dresses, Part 3

    Thursday 19 November 2009 by Sarah Clayton. 3 comments

    Once we determined that the remaining three wedding dresses, requested for the exhibtion Of Love and War, were able to be safely put on display, the textile conservators worked in collaboration with curators and exhibition staff to determine the dimensions of showcase and, the types and styles of mannequins. To get the most accurate dimensions the dresses were placed on temporary mannequins and the trains were arranged as they will fall on …

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  • A different day at work

    Friday 13 November 2009 by Rebecca Britt. 2 comments

    Preparations for the Memorial’s new travelling exhibition Of love and war are nearly complete. The showcases are being built, all the labels and captions are being printed and we’ve been in the recording studio as well. A large part of the Memorial’s collection relating to love during wartime comes from private records, particularly the letters that were exchanged between lovers separated by conflict. However, an exhibition is a very visual…

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  • 60 year old sweat on a wedding dress - a conservation challenge

    Thursday 12 November 2009 by Emma Jones. 7 comments

    Back in September, I was doing some work out at our Treloar Annex, which is where our conservators work.  I was videoing the construction process of the mannequins being made for the 3 wedding dresses  that are to be included in the “Of love and war” exhibition. During a break in filming I got talking to Jessie Firth, who was working on one of the wedding dresses .  She was applying fake perspiration to material to see what effect it would…

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  • Celebrating a year on the Commons on Flickr

    Wednesday 11 November 2009 by Liz Holcombe. 3 comments

    Officers of the 1st Australian Light Horse Brigade.

    One year ago today, the Australian War Memorial joined the Commons on Flickr. We put up a set of 30 photos of soldiers, sailors, nurses, airmen, wives, mothers, sisters, sweethearts, a prime minister, and a koala. The photos are part of our photo collection of well over a million images which covers the experience of Australians at war and Australian military history from the 1860s to the present. We have uploaded other sets on the Commonssince …

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  • Wedding Dresses, part 2

    Wednesday 11 November 2009 by Sarah Clayton. 5 comments

     As previously explained four wedding dresses were initially selected for "Of Love and War". One of the wedding dresses, originally owned by Mrs N S Bissaker, required hundreds of hours of painstaking work before it would be strong enough for display, so unfortunately it will not be ready for display in “Of Love and War”.  Instead this dress with go on our Vulnerable Textiles conservation list and be conserved with all the care it deserves …

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  • Historically significant diaries of C.E.W. Bean are now online

    Monday 9 November 2009 by Robyn van Dyk. 1 comments

    The notebooks, diaries and folders created by Charles Bean during and after the First World War have immense historic value and are considered to be one of the most significant records created by a single Australian. The collection includes 286 volumes of diaries and historical notebooks recorded by Bean at the time and often at the front line. The diaries are firsthand accounts of the war and offer a unique perspective due to Bean’s status as …

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  • The diaries of C.E.W. Bean: 11 November 1918

    Monday 9 November 2009 by Robyn van Dyk. 4 comments

    The notebooks and diaries of C.E.W. Bean provide valuable insight into the last days of the First World War. Bean was Australia’s sole official correspondent and he worked assiduously throughout the four years of the war recording events, often from the front line. Charles Bean was staying in Lille, France during November, 1918. He was an experienced investigator and interviewer and his diaries of the weeks before Armistice detail the emotions…

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  • Memorial Film screening at Dendy Cinemas, Canberra

    Friday 6 November 2009 by Stephanie Boyle.

        War films show soldiers constantly locked in battle and participating in non-stop action - but the reality of war is actually much different. "No Dramas", a film by Robert Nugent commissioned by the Australian War Memorial, shows what life is really like for our troops deployed to combat zones. Shot in Iraq in April 2006, the film explores the isolation and routines of Australian soliders, and the long periods of waiting …

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  • Proactive Collecting with HMAS Parramatta

    Wednesday 4 November 2009 by Alexandra Orr. 2 comments

      HMAS Parramatta (author's collection) The Australian War Memorial faces unique challenges presented by the modern age to its collection development for recent conflicts, including Iraq and Afghanistan. With email, phones and internet communicative tools largely replacing traditional keepsakes such as diaries and letters, this has made identifying and retaining objects of the ADF experience in modern conflict rather difficult. …

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