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World War I centenary 

Commemorating WWI and the Anzac Centenary 1914-1918

WWI collections in Australian and New Zealand Libraries

It is 100 years since the outbreak of World War I. More than 60,000 Australians and 18,000 New Zealanders lost their lives and many more were wounded. Although peace was declared in 1918, the impact of the war continued to reverberate across the following century, affecting every aspect of our societies.

Between 2014 and 2018 libraries in Australia and New Zealand are commemorating the breadth and extent of this terrible conflict, and reflecting upon the service and sacrifice of all who served.

Libraries began documenting the war right from its beginning: in newspapers, books, letters, diaries, photographs, poems, maps, ephemera, posters and oral histories. Their collections contain some of the richest, deepest and most surprising war records. They include personal, intimate stories of life on the frontline — gripping accounts of individual soldiers, officers, nurses and doctors — balanced by the often forgotten accounts of the home front.

The story of the war — so much larger than a recount of military activity — simply cannot be told without reference to these collections. Between 2014 and 2018, libraries will be digitising, compiling and curating these collections into easily accessible online resources which you can find on your State or Territory and National library's website.

Libraries are also working in partnership with other cultural institutions to deliver a rich resource for the community.

Program information

Image credits: (Banner) Indigenous servicemen at their wedding in Charlotte St, Brisbane, 1917, prior to going to war. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, image no. 60511. (Banner background) Arrangement of George Samuel Deviney Collection 1909-1918. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland, record no. 370554.

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