• Australian home front badges of the First World War

    Wednesday 12 August 2015 by Craig Blanch.

    Imperial Silver War Badge

    From the early months of the First World War men perceived to be ‘shirkers’ or cowards were increasingly ostracised. The practice of sending white feathers symbolising cowardice, or shaming men in the street to enlist were commonplace. This worsened as casualty lists grew, bringing the war closer and closer to home. Non-uniformed men backing the war effort or those unable to do so sought ways to promote their contribution to relieve …

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  • Post-war correspondence with Lord Birdwood : Part 1

    Wednesday 12 August 2015 by Stephanie Hume. 1 comments

    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. This blog relates to Australian civilianswho wrote to Birdwood regarding his visits to Australia in the 1920s. If you have any further information about these people, or their …

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  • Understanding Australian Identity Discs Part 2 : Second World War, Royal Australian Navy

    Tuesday 28 July 2015 by Dianne Rutherford. 3 comments

    Members of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) in the First World War were not officially issued with identity discs. However, they were in the Second World War. In June 1939 Commonwealth Navy Order (CNO) 97 ordered that the RAN would follow the Royal Navy procedure laid down in Confidential Admiralty Fleet Order (AFO) 805/1939 that a single red circular compressed fibre disc would be issued to all naval personnel. Not everyone used the red …

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  • Military helmets - an introduction

    Monday 27 July 2015 by Amanda Rebbeck. 7 comments

    External and internal views of a Helmet, Steel, Mark I

    This blog covers the basic aspects and some variants of helmets worn by the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) during the First World War and the Second AIF during the Second World War. First World War Between 1916 and 1918, on the Western Front, Australians wore the British issue steel helmet as head protection. This helmet was called The Helmet, Steel, Mark I but is also sometimes referred to as the Brodie steel helmet or the Brodie Mark…

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  • Mystery Japanese sine wave diagram

    Thursday 23 July 2015 by Stuart Bennington. 6 comments

    Occasionally the Official Records teamcomes across a document that leaves us completely baffled; this is one of them. Back when I started at the Memorial in January 2012 this was one of the items that were waiting for me. After asking around nobody appeared to know anything about it. It is almost certainly Japanese in origin due to the Japanese writing on it; and due to the age and paper is most likely to be of Second World War vintage. …

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  • Thank you!

    Tuesday 14 July 2015 by . 2 comments

    Officer checking a 1916 nominal roll

    Thank you forthe fantastic response to the appeal for assistance with the roll - we now have enough people to help finish the project. I will keep you all posted on the progress of the roll. Kind Regards, Robyn van Dyk Head, Research Centre. Are you interested in volunteering at the Australian War Memorial from home? Do you have some spare time in the next two months? The Memorial is seeking some volunteers to help finish the …

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  • Second World War Escape and Evasion compasses

    Friday 10 July 2015 by Dianne Rutherford.

    Continuing from the blog about Escape Evasion mapsissued during the Second World War, escape compasses were the next important piece of equipment to be developed by MI9. These compasses were produced in a vast variety and were issued as part of escape kits, hidden in uniforms, in buttons or inside innocent looking everyday items. Below are examples of the main types of escape compasses issued during the Second World War. Swinger …

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  • Second World War Escape and Evasion maps

    Wednesday 8 July 2015 by Dianne Rutherford. 2 comments

    Lamp shade made from MI9 maps.

    Quite a few people have examples of Second World War Escape Evasion (EE) maps in their homes. This document covers some of the basic aspects of the creation and issuing of EE maps during the Second World War. It is not a definitive history but is a starting point for those who hold or are interested in Second World War EE equipment. Lamp shade made from MI9 maps. REL34276…

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  • Lost Diggers from the West

    Wednesday 3 June 2015 by David Gist. 1 comments

    The exhibition ‘Remember me: the lost diggers of Vignacourt’ is about to commence a 12-month tour of Western Australia. In a happy coincidence, the Australian War Memorial is delighted to announce the identification of two more diggers from this collection. They both appear in this photograph that includes battalion mascot Jenny the monkey, which has proven to be a popular image with exhibition visitors.…

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  • Understanding Australian Identity Discs Part 1 : First World War

    Friday 22 May 2015 by Dianne Rutherford. 8 comments

    Pattern 1907 identity disc with August 1914 format details stamped.

    OFFICIAL IDENTITY DISCS During the First World War there were threetypes of identity discs issued to those serving in the Australian Imperial Force [AIF]. Those serving in the Royal Australian Navy were not issued with identity discs (excluding members of the Royal Australian Naval Bridging Train, who do appear to have been issued with official identity discs), although somewore private purchase or improvised ones and I have come across …

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