Melbourne’s Korean War Memorial

On 2 May a new memorial commemorating Australians who served in the Korean War of 1950-53 was opened amid great fanfare at Quarry Park, in the west Melbourne suburb of Footscray.  With music provided by the Royal Australian Navy Band, the unveiling ceremony was...

Postscript to a footnote in History

In mid-April, while checking some references on the National Archives website, I came across a short, simple but infinitely sad letter on a general correspondence file of the Canberra Social Service Association from the years 1926-29 (NAA: CP698/9, 22).  Dated 16...

M. J. Calanchini: Under Secretary for Mines, WA

As mentioned before on this blog page, quite often while working on one historical topic another aspect or story is encountered which, although tangential or even irrelevant to the main research, nonetheless provides fascinating reading and is too significant to...

The Battle of Broken Hill, 1915

In my 1998 book Where Australians Fought: the encyclopaedia of Australia’s battles, I included the following entry which was primarily drawn from Professor Ernest Scott’s volume of the Official History of Australia in the First World War, titled Australia during the...

Remembering Colonel Umphelby

In 2017 the Military History & Heritage Victoria group received an approach from a South African academic seeking financial assistance for restoring and maintaining the gravesite of an Australian officer killed during the Boer War.  The grave was that of...

Melbourne’s memorial to General Gordon

In the heart of the city of Melbourne is a memorial which is surely one of the most remarkable historical anachronisms in the whole of Australia. This is a statue located on the corner of Spring and Macarthur streets, just a short distance south of Victoria’s...