Project blog


Darragh Christie, 25 April 2016 · # · · Comment [1]

An audience with the Sphinx: Major General Bridges and the landing at Gallipoli

General William Bridges and his staff watching the manoeuvres of the 1st Australian Division in the desert in Egypt, March 1915. (AWM ART09425)

“Much as we may wish to make a new beginning, some part of us resists doing so as though we were making the first step toward disaster.” – Sir William Throsby Bridges (1861-1915)

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Darragh Christie, 24 April 2016 · # · · Comment

24 April 1916: The Easter Rising – Éirí Amach na Cásca

Schoolmaster, poet and linguist Patrick Pearce (Pádraig Anraí Mac Piarais) stood on the steps of the General Post Office in Dublin, on the 24th April 1916, and read out an impassioned plea and proclamation.

IRISHMEN AND IRISHWOMEN. In the name of God and the dead generations from which she receives her old tradition of nationhood, Ireland, through us summons our children to her flag and strikes for her freedom..

As he did so strategic points around the city were occupied by the Irish volunteers, and the Irish Citizen Army led by James Connolly (Séamas Ó Conghaile).

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Donna, 22 April 2016 · # · · Comment

Faces in the Crowd go to war

Among the many residents encountered in the research for this latest exhibition – Faces in the Crowd – were some local official war artists including the Bulletin artists Henry Fullwood and Frederick Leist. Fullwood lived in Mosman for a year in the late 19th century and Leist lived in Mosman from the 1920s.

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Donna, 17 March 2016 · # · · Comment

Fascinating journey in search of mother's heritage

We received this email from Laurita Smith.

Many thanks to the Library for these WW1 Boards. Through them I have been able to find out so much of my mother’s heritage – she and her twin sister were children of William Leonard Turner, the brother of Arthur Magnus Turner, and Pte. Jack Aubrey Turner whose photos are included on the Boards, together with records of their family. My mother and her sister had very little contact with her father (divorced from her mother when only very young) – but finding this family contact has led me to discover that these Turner men, are direct descendants of Edward Turner, who was transported to Australia for playing a leading role in the Pentrich Revolution in Derbyshire UK in 1817. Edward Turner’s story and the Pentrich Revolution is well publicised on the Web – and I just thought I’d like to thank the Library staff for putting up the Color Boards. Without the information provided with the photos, I would never have known (as neither did my mother) that there were other relatives (aunts and uncles) she never knew, and that her father’s family linked back to the early days in Sydney, to the Stonemason’s Arms in Broadway/Wattle Street, and the colourful story of Edward in his new life in Australia. I have certainly been taken on a fascinating journey to my heritage roots.


Darragh Christie, 14 February 2016 · # · · Comment

Mosman’s boy mascot company commander and the Valentine’s Day mutiny

In February 1916, Patrick Gordon (“Bill”) Taylor had been stationed at the AIF Liverpool training camps for over a month. Like other lads his age, he had been caught up in the enthusiasm to sign up and “do his bit”, so as to not miss out on what was thought to be at the time the greatest adventure of his generation.


Liverpool camp, October 1916. (Image: AWM C01206)

This was the life he had chosen; and he could only assume it would get him a lot closer to the action than his parents’ plans for him to study medicine at Sydney University.

But camp life at Liverpool was to fall short of expectations for both this 18 year old, wide-eyed, second lieutenant from Raglan Street, Mosman, and for the army of volunteer recruits, from all over Sydney, and from all types of backgrounds.

“Bill” Taylor recalls…

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