• The Liberation of Colditz Castle

    Friday 17 July 2009 by Dianne Rutherford. 2 comments

    Shrapnel from an American ranging shell, Colditz Castle 1945. This 8 cm piece of shrapnel is a souvenir from the liberation of the infamous prisoner of war camp, Oflag IVC - Colditz Castle. It was collected by an Australian soldier, Lieutenant Jack Millett. Millett was an 'incorrigible', one of the prisoners held by the Germans at Colditz for making repeated escape attempts from other camps. In 1942, Millett was caught trying to…

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  • Dr Phoebe Chapple: The first woman doctor to win the Military Medal

    Tuesday 30 June 2009 by Craig Blanch. 15 comments

    Phoebe Chapple (1879-1967) Image courtesy of the State Library of South Australia. B 25677/34 Phoebe Chapple was always going to be someone special. She grew up in a family of high achievers. Apart from her father, Frederic Chapple, who was headmaster at Prince Alfred College Adelaide, five of her seven siblings held university degrees: Alfred a lecturer in engineering at St John’s University Cambridge; Ernest, another …

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  • First World War diary record series passes 400,000 images.

    Monday 29 June 2009 by Sue Ducker. 5 comments

    The digitisation of the whole series of Australian Imperial Force (AIF) war diaries from the First World War, (Official Records series AWM4), recently passed the 400,000 image mark.   Included in the 400,000 images are all the available diaries for the Australian Flying Corps, (AFC) .  Digitised versions of the diaries are being regularly uploaded to the Memorial’s website as they are completed.  The AIF war diaries are an invaluable …

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  • Valour

    Tuesday 9 June 2009 by Peter Burness. 1 comments

     Valour is a special human quality, usually demonstrated in the performance of extraordinary and unselfish deeds in the face of great peril. It is represented in a variety of words: bravery, boldness, courage, gallantry, and heroism. It can be observed in both peace and war. However, valour is particularly evident in wartime, where the risk to one's life in the service of others is more likely to be observed.  The story is told that when Queen …

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  • The girl on the badge

    Wednesday 3 June 2009 by Paul Taylor. 9 comments

     A donation came to my desk in the days following Anzac Day that caught my attention.  It was a maroon and white identification badge that featured the image of a young girl, her name, an I.D. number and the words, 'C.S.I.R. Radiophysics Division' Fortunately the depositor of the badge provided details of the original owner and I was soon speaking to Valerie Briggs who at 79 years of age still possessed all of the enthusiasm and intelligence …

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  • Archives sharing content in the digital age

    Friday 29 May 2009 by .

    The Netherland's national archives, Nationaal Archief, has recently completed a research project: Afscheid van Indië (Separation from Indonesia), which includes the web publishing of over 175,000 pages of digitised records. The site tells the story of the separation of the Netherlands from its former colony of Indonesia during the 1940s. This turbulent decade in the history of the Netherlands is told through the use of archival material sourced …

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  • Ludwig Marx - A unique Australian's story

    Tuesday 19 May 2009 by . 4 comments

    As an assistant curator at the Australian War Memorial, I deal with many personal stories of Australians and other nations during war time. One story has really inspired me lately, that of Ludwig Marx. I had an email from his granddaughter recently about his service medals we hold in the collection. As I read the catalogue records, the brief description "served German Army in the First World War, Imprisoned at Dachau" grabbed me. I wanted …

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  • Final Simpson Prize post

    Monday 18 May 2009 by Andrew Gray. 6 comments

    The Simpson Prize students have now been back in Oz for just over two weeks  - enough time to re-adjust and reflect on our experiences.   Here are some thoughts from most of the gang.  This is the final blog entry, so thanks to those who have followed the experiences and for any year 9 or 10 students interested in applying to this year's competition, you can see what sort of experience the winners have on their trip. Istiklal …

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  • Students from around Australia

    Tuesday 28 April 2009 by Andrew Gray. 7 comments

    Simpson Prize students (left to right) Nic, Eleanor, Meg, Madeleine, Erin, Lauren, Varun and Johanna at the 57 Regiment Memorial It's always interesting and entertaining for me to discover the character of the young Aussies who come on the Simpson Prize trip.  Here's a rough sketch of each one. Erin from NT is an enthusiastic traveler who is excited by just about anything - driving onto a car ferry, driving off a car ferry, …

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  • Recovery and return

    Tuesday 28 April 2009 by Andrew Gray.

    Varun and Onder, our bus driver, laying a wreath at the Turkish 57th Regiment Memorial The return to the hotel after our big Anzac morning was a chance to relax, catch up on sleep and do whatever we felt like.  As it was a lovely warm day, Maddy and Lauren braved the waters for another swim, others walked and talked on the beach, Varun learnt card games - Pisti and Kapti Kacti - from our bus driver, while the more senior members…

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