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National Museum of Australia

Collection Explorer



  • 1992 Torres Strait Islands Cultural Festival collection(28)

    Fishing spear made by Wilfred Aniba
    Yellow, blue, green and pink floral pattern dress from Thursday Island
    Fishing spear made by Wilfred Aniba
    Headdress decorated with shells and feathers, made by Audi Gibuma of Boigu Island
  • Warakurna History Paintings collection no.2(9)

    Whitefellas Spinning Around by Jean Inyalanka Burke, 2011
    Ngaanyatjarra Council's 30th Birthday Party by Jean Inyalanka Burke, 2011
    Warakurna to Warnan Health Walk by Eunice Yunurupa Porter
    Camel Cull by Eunice Yunurupa Porter, 2012
  • J Davidson collection no. 3(319)

    Flying Foxes
    Painting depicts a writhing snake
    Bark painting depicting pike, file snake, diver bird, water goanna and kangaroo by David Malangi, Milingimbi, 1965
    Liyagalawumirri  mortuary rites.
  • Ben Chifley collection no. 3(53)

    Passenger ticket for Mary Corrigan dated 1878
    Four letters of condolence to Mrs Clark and two photographs
    The Omrah Chronicle, account of voyage Sydney to London 1899
    Scots School, Bathurst, Swimming Pool Fund

    The objects in the Ben Chifley Collection refer to the lives of Ben and Elizabeth Chifley, primarily from the Chifleys' days as Prime Minister and Prime Minister's wife, but stretching beyond Ben's death in 1951 until Elizabeth's death in 1962. Significant objects include a letter of condolence to Elizabeth Chifley from Elsie Curtin (former PM John Curtin's wife) on the death of Ben Chifley (above), photos of Chifley as a young boy and a bible on which Chifley was sworn in as minister in the short-lived Scullin government of 1931.

    Joseph Benedict Chifley was Australia's sixteenth Prime Minister, leading the Australian government between 1945 and 1949. This period was one of particular importance in Australian history, being the time during which many of the contours of post-War Australian social and economic development were established. Chifley also articulated the values of the reforming Labor Party in his "Light on the Hill" speech of 1949. However, the election of December that year saw the beginning of a drastic re-alignment of political allegiances in voting behaviour, leading to over twenty years of conservative dominance in Australian politics. An understanding of Ben Chifley, in both his private and public guises, illustrates much about this crucial era in post-War Australian history.

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs Art (ATSIAA) collection(2104)

    Bark painting titled 'Mortuary Ceremony'.
    Bark painting by Dawidi Djulwadak
    Painting by Gordon Syron - Right side of triptych
    Morning Star by David Malangi

    The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs Art collection comprises 2050 artworks and other objects. The artworks - which numerically dominate the collection - were produced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities throughout Australia. The accumulation of these artworks into a single collection has resulted from the choices and selections made during a 38 year period by a variety of staff working for the Council for Aboriginal Affairs (CAA), the Department of Aboriginal Affairs (DAA), the Aboriginal Development Commission (ADC) and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) at the national, regional and local levels.

    The collection spans the years following the 1967 referendum, when dramatic changes in the governance of Aboriginal people took place, up to 2005 when the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission was dissolved. It provides a snapshot of the diversity and changes in Indigenous art and its representation which occurred during the period of its formation. The small number of 'non-art' objects in the collection is also significant in providing insights into the working of the various Commonwealth bodies involved in Indigenous affairs. As well as the significance of many of the individual pieces, the collection is also significant as a whole, as a complex artefact stemming from Australia's history of governance of Australian Indigenous peoples.

  • Neil Jensen collection(72)

    Preliminary Inspection Report from Light Plane Services, 30 April 1981-6 May 1981
    Letter to Mons. F. Rouge from Jean V. Augsburger
    Gypsy Engine Warranty from deHavilland Aircraft Co. Ltd. made out to Percival Aircraft Co.
    Carbon copy of letter to Rolls Royce seeking information on modifications to engine, 19 March 1980.

    The Neil Jensen collection consists of a Percival Gull Six aircraft, G-AERD, and associated archive. Made by the Percival Aircraft Company at Gravesend in Kent, England, in 1936, this aircraft was first purchased by Ariane Dufaux of Switzerland and registered as HB-OFU. After passing through several owners in Switzerland, the aircraft was sold to a collector and restored by Cliff Lovell in England where it was featured on the air show circuit and registered as G-AERD. Neil Jensen purchased G-AERD in 1983, and while it was based in Redhill, Surrey it was awarded the Percival Trophy by the Cotswold Aircraft Restoration Group.

    Born in Albury, New South Wales, in 1897, Edgar Wikner Percival served in Europe and Egypt with the Royal Flying Corps during the First World War. Returning to Australia after the war, Percival operated a commercial aviation business while pursuing opportunities to design and manufacture new types of aircraft. In 1929, he travelled to England to work as a test pilot for the Bristol Aircraft Company, and in 1930 designed and manufactured the first low-wing cantilever monoplanes in the British Commonwealth. Percival formed the Percival Aircraft Company in 1932 and named the new aircraft series 'Gull'. Characterised by their graceful lines, the Gulls had light wooden frames covered with doped (lacquered) fabric and powerful four or six cylinder engines. PercivalÂ?s Gulls quickly established a reputation for high performance, with Percival designing racing versions named 'Mew Gulls', which won acclaim in the Kings Cup Air Race.

  • Gladys Henry collection(10)

    Figurative shaped wooden clapstick, with two eye sockets burned into the wood
    Message stick
    Club - man's fighting stick
    Pigmented, wooden tapstick covered overall with geometric designs
  • Springfield - Faithfull Family collection(3501)

    Florence Faithfull wearing a dark dress standing beside Lilian Faithfull
    Handwritten recipes
    School report
    Sir Ernest Cable's property, Devo

    The Springfield Collection comprises about 1550 artefacts from Springfield station, south of Goulburn. It includes colonial era costume, a bushranger medal, surveying instruments, a late-19th century landau, firearms and edged weapons, wool samples and Joseph Foveaux's pocket watch and bible. The objects are complemented by over 400 photographs. This diverse collection reflects the growth and economic success of the property, responses to changes in the wool market and the daily lives of the people who have lived on Springfield.

    Springfield has grown from a 518-hectare land grant given to William Pitt Faithfull in 1828 to the current 3183 hectares with ownership remaining in the one family. William Pitt Faithfull established the Springfield Merino Stud in 1838 with ten rams selected from the Macarthur Camden Park stud. The stud evolved slowly over the years until the early 1950s when, under the management of Jim Maple-Brown, a scientific approach to wool-growing was adopted and the stud's name was changed to Fonthill to reflect this.