• The Not So Great Escape

    Wednesday 12 August 2009 by Alexandra Orr. 9 comments

    On the 19th November 1941, Australian cruiser HMAS Sydney II was lost, with all hands, off the coast of Western Australia after engaging with the German raider HSK Kormoran. The discovery in March 2008 of the final resting place of the Sydney and the Kormoran attracted much attention. Understandably, there has been much discussion over the circumstances surrounding the loss of the Sydney; however the story of the Kormoran’s Commander, …

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  • The Cessation of Operation CATALYST

    Tuesday 28 July 2009 by Alexandra Orr. 4 comments

    The 31st of July 2009 will mark the end of Operation CATALYST. CATALYST began on the 20th of March 2003 and defined the role of the Australian Defence Force in assisting multinational forces in the stabilization and security of Iraq. It also involved ADF support in the implementation of the country’s recovery programs. Boatswains Mates, HMAS Parramatta, 2009 During the course of this operation, the Australian War …

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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 …

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  • Archives sharing content in the digital age

    Friday 29 May 2009 by Robyn van Dyk.

    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…

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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. …

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  • Australia's Gallipoli Victoria Crosses

    Thursday 23 April 2009 by Craig Blanch. 2 comments

    Anzac, the landing 1915 by George Lambert ART02873 For ninety four years the story of Gallipoli has galvanised Australians to remember, on ANZAC Day, those that have served, and continue to serve, in conflicts around the globe. The description by poet John Masefield in 1917 of the landing on Gallipoli creates an indelible backdrop to the fighting: Those who wish to imagine the scene must think of any rough and steep …

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  • The Gallipoli Landing and the first Anzac Day

    Thursday 23 April 2009 by Annette Gaykema. 5 comments

    As we ready ourselves to commemorate Anzac Day at the Australian War Memorial, we can gain a small insight what it was like at the Gallipoli landing. Personal diaries held by the Memorial describe what it was like landing at Gallipoli on Sunday, 25 April 1915 under the heavy fire of Turkish machine guns. Although the photos accompanying this blog post do not relate directly to the diary entries, they are able to illustrate the stories in…

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  • Red Cross Records from the First World War

    Monday 16 March 2009 by Craig Tibbitts. 1 comments

    In the last few days has come news of an important discovery for First World War historians (especially family historians), in the archives of the Red Cross in Geneva, Switzerland.  British historian Peter Barton, commissioned by the Australian government to conduct further research into a mass grave at Fromelles in France, made the find.  The records consist of ‘card indexes and registers compiled between 1914 and …

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  • Valentine’s Day Love Letter

    Friday 13 February 2009 by Nicholas Schmidt. 13 comments

    The Memorial recently acquired a mysterious letter. It is beautifully written and decorated, but we don't know much about it. It seems it was written by a French woman to her sweetheart, and we assume he was Australian, as the letter ended up in Australia. We do not know who they were, but we do know that the letter was written on 25 August 1918 and was sent from Saint-Sulpice-les-Feuilles in France. The writer, Martha (or perhaps …

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