• Good Friday, 1915

    Thursday 2 April 2015 by Alison Wishart. 2 comments

    Soldiers and civilians outside a burnt out building in Esbekiah Street, Cairo. April 1915.

    One hundred years ago, in 1915, Good Friday fell on 2 April. While their families were going to church and preparing fish dinners, the Anzacs stationed in training camps near Cairo, Egypt, went on a rampage. The 'Battle of Wazza' took place in Cairo's red light district. Parts of Derb el Wasa and Haret el Wasser(known affectionately as 'The Wozzer', Wassir, Wasser, Wassar etc.) were gutted.…

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  • Australian military Birdwood connections

    Tuesday 24 March 2015 by Charis May. 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 military personnel who wrote to Birdwood. The general theme of the correspondence was to commend him on his leadership of the Anzacs. If you have any …

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  • Australian Birdwood connections

    Tuesday 24 March 2015 by Charis May.

    The Australian War Memorial is currently undertaking a project to create a comprehensive digital archive of the Anzacs and their deeds, and of the wider Australian experience of war. The collections are selected from our extensive archives and reflect the experiences of Australian servicemen, nurses and civilians during the First World War. This project will digitally preserve the Memorial’s collections as well as provide full copies …

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  • Unidentified Birdwood connections

    Tuesday 24 March 2015 by Charis May.

    The writers to Birdwood in this blog do not appear to be Australians and are not easily identified. In some cases, it may be due to the difficulty in reading the hand writing. Please contact Charis May via PubandDig@awm.gov.au if you are able to assist with their identities. Other blogs relating to Birdwood correspondence can be found here : Australian military Birdwood connections and Australian Birdwood connections W Bax This is …

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  • So far from home: sending and receiving mail in the trenches

    Wednesday 18 March 2015 by Theresa Cronk. 5 comments

    The arrival of the first AIF mail of 161 bags at Mena, Egypt. The non-appearance of this mail in Egypt caused a great deal of talk and anxiety amongst the Australian troops. It had been labelled to GPO London and subsequently returned from there, 13 January 1915.

    Imagine if you were unable to contact loved ones by telephone, email or via any other communication strategy now available in today’s digital age. No longer is it possible to hop in your car and drive down the road to visit friends and family. Instead, you have sailed for at least 4 weeks aboard a troopship to a foreign land. And there is no indication as to when, or if, you will see loved ones again. In January 1915, an oft-repeated …

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  • Vale Peter Anthony Ward

    Wednesday 18 March 2015 by David Gist. 11 comments

    Yesterday afternoon, Peter Ward passed away after a long illness. Peter is best known for his work as an official army photographer, both film and still, in Vietnam from 1969 to 1970. The Photographs, Film and Sound Section of the Australian War Memorial offer a small sample of his work from the National Collection. WAR/70/0018/VN During this period of the centenary of Anzac, it is easy …

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  • Rare donation of book signed by Gallipoli veterans

    Thursday 19 February 2015 by .

    His Excellency Mr Stephen Brady AO CVO Australian Ambassador to the French Republic hands over rare Gallipoli book to Dr Brendan Nelson Director of the War Memorial

    On 18 February 2015, His Excellency Mr Stephen Brady AO CVO Australian Ambassador to the French Republic, donated to the Memorial a copy of Alan Moorehead’s book Gallipoli. The significance of this book is that itwas signed by Gallipoli veterans on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of their return to Anzac Cove. His Excellency Mr Brady was fortunate enough to be travelling with the veterans at the time and asked them to sign a copy …

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  • 2015 Australian Summer Scholars Presentations

    Wednesday 18 February 2015 by Lachlan Grant.

    Wallace Anderson and Louis McCubbin, Lone Pine (1924–27)(detail).  AWM AR PAIU2011/184.10

    Public Talk: 2015 Australian Summer Scholars Presentations Thursday 19 February, 2 pm – 3.30 pm BAE Systems Theatre Australian War Memorial Presentations for the 2015 Australian War Memorial Summer Vacation Scholarship Scheme will take place on Thursday 19 February in the BAE Systems Theatre at the Australian War Memorial, 2 pm – 3.30 pm. This year the three presentations feature Mr Shaun Mawdsley (Massey University) on the creation …

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  • New Art Acquisition by Eric Thake

    Friday 30 January 2015 by Cherie Prosser.

    Eric Thake, Self-portrait in a broken shaving mirror One of only two self-portraits by Eric Thake produced during his Official War Artist commission, 1944-45. Eric Thake (1904-1982) was a Modernist painter with an interest in Surrealism, a style that developed in the early 1920s, best known for its contradictory and illogical scenes, expressing unconscious ideas and concepts. His contemporary approach to art made him an unlikely …

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  • In deep respect - Bede Tongs OAM MM

    Wednesday 28 January 2015 by Garth O'Connell. 6 comments

    Captain Bede Tongs (centre) with his wife and his brother Reginald after being presented his Military Medal by the Governor-General in Canberra, July 1947. Reginald was captured in Singapore with the 2/20th Battalion AIF and along with tens of thousands of others suffered under Japanese captivity on the Burma-Thai death railway and at Changi until his release in 1945.

    Yesterday at the Christ Church in Queanbeyan NSW the funeral of a local community stalwart, Bede Tongs OAM MMwas conducted. Amongst the many mourners inside andoutside the Churchwere several current and ex-members of staff and senior management of the Australian War Memorial including yours truly. It is tremendously hard to put into so few words what a positiveimpact Bede had not just on me personally and professionally, but on my …

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