• The Trench Art of Sapper Pearl

    Wednesday 12 October 2011 by Sue Ducker. 3 comments

    The Memorial holds a fantastic collection of First World War trench art made by Sapper Stanley Pearl, who served in the First World War and later worked at the Australian War Memorial. Stanley Keith Pearl [6756] enlisted at 21 years of age on the 9 November 1915 at the Tasmanian town of Ulverstone.  On his service record, [held at: National Archives Australia] when asked about civil convictions, he responds that he was once convicted …

    Read on

  • “Operation Menace”- the story of HMAS Australia in African waters.

    Friday 23 September 2011 by Rebecca Weekes. 1 comments

    The end of September marks the 71 year anniversary of the battle of Dakar. Also known as “Operation Menace”, this operation was endeavoured to be peaceful, with the aim of placing General Charles de Gaulle in leadership at Dakar. It was a significant attempt to set up a Free French government in Dakar (West Africa) by British, French and Australian forces.  The recently digitised Royal Australian Navy Reports of Proceedings …

    Read on

  • Medals of a Rat

    Wednesday 31 August 2011 by David Gist. 4 comments

    Visitors to the Memorial’s exhibition Rats of Tobruk 1941 will have noticed the unofficial Rats of Tobruk medal presented, according to its engraving, by Lord Haw Haw. Around twenty of these medals were made at Tobruk, which illustrates one of the earliest examples of the town’s defenders reclaiming the title ‘Rat’, bestowed on them by the propaganda radio program ‘Germany Calling’. Visitors may also notice the brasso caked …

    Read on

  • 25 000 images online - AWM78 Reports of Proceedings, HMA Ships and Establishments

    Tuesday 12 July 2011 by Theresa Cronk.

    On Saturday 10 July 1911, King George V gave his approval for the Commonwealth Naval Forces to become known as the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). One hundred years have now passed since this event. To celebrate the centenary of the Royal Australian Navy, the reports of proceedings for fifty RAN ships and establishments are being made available online via the Australian War Memorial's website. This is part of an ongoing project to digitise …

    Read on

  • WWI letters & diaries at the Memorial.

    Monday 18 April 2011 by Sue Jamesion. 4 comments

    As the Memorial gears up for WWI Centenary commemorations, AWM cataloguer indexer, Sue Jamesion, begins work on a diary from 1914, With the Centenary of the Great War of 1914-1918 only a few years away, staff in the Research Centre at the Australian War Memorial are busily working on a variety of special projects aimed at supporting the Australian community's commemoration of this momentous occasion.  One such project …

    Read on

  • What did we do before Google Earth?

    Thursday 7 April 2011 by Andrew Currey. 2 comments

    One of the many problems trench warfare presented to soldiers in the First World War was finding out what the enemy was doing behind his lines.  The simple solution to this was height, and in a relatively short time many ways of getting men and a camera off the ground were developed. Some are simple and ingenious, others were more complex: two German examples are an observation post disguised as a tree, and a periscope which can extend …

    Read on

  • Closure of the Birdwood papers between 11 April and 2 May 2011

    Thursday 31 March 2011 by Nicholas Schmidt. 1 comments

    The papers of Field Marshal the Lord Birdwood will be undergoing conservation, rehousing and digitisation for their long term preservation. Informal portrait of Birdwood in his office at ANZAC Headquarters in 1917 E00539 This important collection has been held in the Memorial’s Research Centre since the 1960s. Birdwood is a significant figure in Australian military history. He commanded the Australians for much of the …

    Read on

  • The Bicycle in Warfare

    Wednesday 23 March 2011 by Ally Roche. 4 comments

    The bicycle is a machine that we can all relate to, it’s a common denominator.  Be that early childhood memories of the first ride down that steep hill, the freedom to go distances that would be problematic on foot or that flat tyre at the most inconvenient time. Today, bike technology has changed dramatically from the bikes that were being used in the First World War.  No carbon fibre frames or dual suspension shock absorbers, gears…

    Read on

  • 'Our Hero We're Proud of Him' : Patriotic Crochet in the First World War

    Friday 4 March 2011 by Dianne Rutherford. 1 comments

    Filet crochet was a popular craft before and during the First World War. Women would make decorative or functional items for the home such as tray cloths, milk jug covers, tea cosies, tablecloths and cushion covers. They also made decorative items for clothing, such as crochet lace collars or cuffs. During the First World War patriotic military themes were popular. Images such as ships, flags, soldiers and medals, along with slogans …

    Read on

  • Close Shaves

    Thursday 3 March 2011 by Andrew Currey.

    “I had a very close shave...” (Pte C H Lester, 1 October 1917) As many soldiers will testify, war can be as much about luck as it is about training and equipment. Luck can take many forms, such as being in the right place at the right time, and the closely related not being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The men listed below are a few examples of these places and the sometimes very short distance between them. Lt William Henry…

    Read on

Pages