• How best to remember someone?

    Tuesday 23 December 2014 by Alison Wishart. 5 comments

    A collection compiled by Maude Edmondson and donated to the Australian War Memorial

    How best to remember someone? In the past, when someone died, some people created scrap books or dossiers as a way of working through their grief and gathering together all the memorabilia. This is what Maude Edmondson did when her son died at Tobruk in 1941, in an action for which he received a Victoria Cross. A collection compiled by Maude Edmondson after the death of her son, donated to the Australian War Memorial. How are loved ones…

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  • The Suvla Derby

    Friday 7 November 2014 by Edwin Ride.

    The Melbourne Cup - the race that stops a nation - has run once more, for the hundred and fifty-fourth time, and most of the punters have probably collected their winnings. In 1915 the Cup was already more than 50 years old: a well-entrenched institution on the Australian social calendar. At Gallipoli that year, the officers of the 1st Light Horse Brigade (no doubt among many others) had organised a sweepstake for the Cup, and naturally …

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  • What have we learned? - The Australian experience of war and the Australian Curriculum

    Wednesday 22 October 2014 by Stuart Baines. 2 comments

    Military history plays an important part in defining chapters in the history of individual nations. Its impacts reach into most aspects of life and experience not only during the time of conflict but also before and after the event. Isolating the period of conflict from the social or political history has the potential to become an orchard in which the fruit of myth grows ripe. Some argue that in the context of Australia's experience the…

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  • Opinions of Lawrence

    Wednesday 24 September 2014 by Gabrielle Considine. 1 comments

    This month’s sound reel depicts Lawrence of Arabia in a light not usually seen. It contains the sometimes frank opinions of four Australian contemporaries of Lieutenant Colonel T E Lawrence CB DSO. Lieutenant Colonel Lawrence, also known as Lawrence of Arabia, was a British Army advisor to the Hejaz Army in Jordan and Saudi Arabia. In this sound reel is a significant recording from the Memorial’s collection, that of a speech by …

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  • 70th anniversary of the sinking of the Rakuyō Maru

    Thursday 11 September 2014 by Lachlan Grant. 3 comments

    Former Australian prisoners of war are rescued by the crew of USN submarine USS Pampanito (SS-383). These men survived the sinking of two Japanese troop transports, the Kachidoki Maru and the Rakuyo Maru by Pampanito and USS Sealion II (SS-315) on 12 September 1944 respectively.

    Former Australian prisoners of war are rescued by the crew of USN submarine USS Pampanito (SS-383). These men survived the sinking of two Japanese troop transports, the Kachidoki Maru and the Rakuyo Maru by Pampanito and USS Sealion II (SS-315) on 12 September 1944 respectively. P03651.005 Seventy years ago this week, on 12 September 1944, two Japanese ships transporting …

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  • First to fight

    Wednesday 10 September 2014 by . 1 comments

    The Bitapaka road. The first objective of the New Guinea expedition was the German wireless station at Bitapaka, a few miles inland from Blanche Bay, which at the outbreak of war was still in the course of construction, but was hurriedly finished and ready for use.

    At the battle of Bitapaka, the ANMEF were the first Australians in combat. The Bitapaka road. The first objective of the New Guinea expedition was the German wireless station at Bitapaka, a few miles inland from Blanche Bay, which at the outbreak of war was still in the course of construction, but was hurriedly finished and ready for use. A03146 The two scouts pushed into …

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  • Why it is not incorrect to speak of winning a Victoria Cross

    Wednesday 3 September 2014 by Robert Nichols. 9 comments

    It is often asserted that it is somehow disrespectful, or otherwise inappropriate, to speak of someone “winning a VC”. This is not so. It is, in fact, perfectly permissible – and sometimes unavoidable – to say that someone has won a Victoria Cross or some other bravery award. But why does this make some people uncomfortable? The reason seems to be because they see the term “win” as reserved for the outcomes of prizes or …

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  • The first to fall

    Wednesday 27 August 2014 by Aaron Pegram. 7 comments

    Chisholm

    Among the first casulties of the First World War were Australians fighting in the British Army. On 26 August 1914, two weeks before the first action undertaken by Australian troops in the First World War, a 22-year-old lieutenant of the 1st Battalion East Lancashire Regiment lay mortally wounded by shrapnel in a cornfield outside the village of Ligny-en-Cambrésis. He had been in France for just three days. British and French troops had …

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  • Stitches in time: rehabilitation embroidery in the AWM collection

    Wednesday 30 July 2014 by Kerry Neale. 5 comments

    Rehabilitation embroidery : Private S A Chivas, 14 Machine Gun Company, AIF

    Many people tend to associate embroidery and needlework with women and the comfort of the homefront, but men are also known to pick up the needle and thread, especially it seems during times of war. Whether stitched as a way to pass the time in a prisoner of war camp, to record events, places and names, or as rehabilitation therapy in military hospitals, embroidered items have many interesting stories to share. To celebrate World …

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  • P-39 Airacobras in defence of Australia

    Friday 13 June 2014 by . 7 comments

    Probably Laverton, Vic. C. 1942. A WAAAF technical trainee takes a close look at the nose of a Bell Airacobra fighter aircraft at RAAF Station Laverton.

    When we consider the many aircraft type which defended the skies above Australia and her territories, the P-40 Kittyhawk (Warhawk in American service) immediately springs to mind. Indeed, the Kittyhawk would arguably be one of the most important fighters in service with the RAAF during the Second World War. Though many veterans who served in the Northern Territory will recall with fondness, the sound of Merlin engines over the top end …

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