Image copyright: Copyright expired - public domain
Public Domain Mark This image is in the Public Domain

ID number ARTV00022
Title South Australians, come and help, enlist at once
Collection Art
Object type Poster
  • Wall, C (Artist)
  • South Australian Government (Publisher)
  • A. Vaughan, Government Printer (Printer)
Place made Australia: South Australia, Adelaide
Date made c. 1915
Medium chromolithograph on paper
Measurement sheet: 95.6 x 66.6 cm


This South Australian First World War recruitment poster appeals to patriotic sentiments by using the nationally recognised call of 'Coo-ee'. A soldier calls to his fellow countrymen, a pith helmet and fez lie on the battlefield beside him as he holds his rifle up in the air toward the fleeing enemy. The 'Coo-ee!' may have referred to the first use of an advertising device called the recruiting march which began at Gilgandra with 30 men and ended 320 miles away in Sydney with 263. These men were known as the 'Cooees'.

Recruitment posters were in abundant supply in Australia throughout the First World War. Australia relied solely on voluntary recruits to serve in the AIF. Compulsory military service, or conscription, for eligible men was in force in Australia from 1911, however, these forces were for home defence and could not be used to serve in a war overseas. Following the initial rush of men to recruit in 1914, enrolments dropped, leaving federal and state governments to devise sophisticated campaigns to boost numbers.