• The German Aviator's Leg

    Monday 26 October 2015 by Dianne Rutherford. 11 comments

    Luck can sometimes be a researcher’s most valuable asset. This is certainly the case for one item held by the Memorial that has fascinated many of the staff in my section – an artificial right leg worn by a German aviator during the First World War. RELAWM07698 The German pilot's artificial leg The fact someone managed to continue on active service during the war after losing a limb is fascinating and fairly rare. There were only a …

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  • A serendipitous journey through the archive

    Monday 26 October 2015 by . 4 comments

    Growing up, I was always told that my great-grandfather, Frank Cronk, had served in the First World War, along with his best friend, Tom, and that Tom had asked Frank to look after his sister should he not make it through the war. I was told also that this promise was honoured when Frank returned to Australia and later married Toms's sister. Sadly, Tom did not make it through the war and died on the battlefields of Belgium in 1917. Both …

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  • Footy on the Front: AFL during the First World War

    Friday 2 October 2015 by Melissa Cadden. 1 comments

    An outdoors group portrait of unidentified members of the Australian Rules Football Team of the 1st Australian Division.

    An outdoors group portrait of unidentified members of the Australian Rules Football Team of the 1st Australian Division. E04422 The AFL Grand Final weekend has rolled around quickly, with the mighty Hawthorn Hawks tuning up to battle it out against the West Coast Eagles for the ultimate victory in 2015. This perhaps inspires a timely look at the impact of the First World …

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  • Australian issued rifles and bayonets of the First World War

    Wednesday 23 September 2015 by . 4 comments

    Short Magazine Lee Enfield No 1 Mk III (SMLE No 1 Mk III).

    Short Magazine Lee Enfield No 1 Mk III (SMLE No 1 Mk III). REL/05562.001 During the First World War the principle long arms issued to Australian Forces were the Short Magazine Lee Enfield No 1 Mk III (SMLE No 1 Mk III) and the Short magazine Lee Enfield No 1 Mk III* (SMLE No 1 Mk III*). The difference between the two marks was that the SMLE No 1 Mk III had a magazine …

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  • Highlight on official records of the First World War: AWM28 - Recommendation files for honours and awards, AIF, 1914-18 War

    Tuesday 22 September 2015 by Craig Berelle. 2 comments

    AWM28 1_194

    Highlight on the official records of the First World War is a centenary program of posts highlighting those records created 100 years ago, whythey exist and how we can help make these essential records available for research purposes. Among the senior officers supporting Capt. Murray's award was Lt-Gen Birdwood of the Anzac Corps. On 10 September 2015, Capt. Murray’s descendants presented his VC medal group for display in the …

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  • Bandsmen of Bapaume

    Wednesday 16 September 2015 by Melissa Cadden. 1 comments

    The Band of the 5th Australian Infantry Brigade, led by Bandmaster Sergeant A Peagam of the 19th Battalion, passing through the Grande Place (Town Square) of Bapaume, playing the Victoria March. The ruins of the town are still smouldering, and smoke rises from the debris of surrounding buildings. A few miles away, on the Lagnicourt-Noreuil line, the fighting continues.

    The Band of the 5th Australian Infantry Brigade, led by Bandmaster Sergeant A Peagam of the 19th Battalion, passing through the Grande Place (Town Square) of Bapaume, playing the Victoria March. The ruins of the town are still smouldering, and smoke rises from the debris of surrounding buildings. A few miles away, on the Lagnicourt-Noreuil line, the fighting continues. E00426…

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  • Post-war correspondence with Lord Birdwood : Part 4

    Wednesday 9 September 2015 by Stephanie Hume.

    As part of a wider project to digitise First World War collections, the Memorial is seeking contact with relatives of the persons listed below in connection with the large correspondence within the Field Marshal William Riddell Birdwood collection 3DRL/3376. If you have any further information about these people, or their descendants, the Memorial would love to talk to you. Please contact Stephanie Hume via PubandDig@awm.gov.au Other …

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  • Post-war correspondence with Lord Birdwood : Part 3

    Wednesday 9 September 2015 by Stephanie Hume.

    As part of a wider project to digitise First World War collections, the Memorial is seeking contact with relatives of the persons listed below in connection with the large correspondence within the Field Marshal William Riddell Birdwood collection 3DRL/3376. If you have any further information about these people, or their descendants, the Memorial would love to talk to you. Please contact Stephanie Hume via PubandDig@awm.gov.au Other …

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  • The unofficial Victory Medal ribbon of 1919

    Tuesday 1 September 2015 by Dianne Rutherford.

    One item we get regular enquiries about is a strange multi-coloured ribbon found on the end of some old medal ribbon bars. This ribbon, made up of many coloured stripes is an unofficial ribbon for the Victory Medal from early-mid 1919. REL/18343.004 medal ribbon bar featuring the British War Medal 1914-20 ribbon and the unofficial Victory Medal ribbon In January 1919 some of the Allied nations suggested that there should be a single …

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  • Understanding Australian Identity Discs Part 3 : Second World War, Army

    Thursday 20 August 2015 by Dianne Rutherford. 6 comments

    A member of the Second AIF wearing his compressed fibre identity discs, Australia c 1944.

    WEARING IDENTITY DISCS During the First World War, the army came to realise the importance of issuing two identity discs to each person so one could remain with a body and the other be collected for record keeping. In the Second World War, the identity disc remained the primary, and frequently only, method of being able to identify the dead. It was noted in various General Routine Orders (GRO) that not wearing identity discs would be …

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