Alert

State Library Victoria temporary closure Read more

Home > Collective Isolation Project, week 3: Staying connected

Collective Isolation Project, week 3: Staying connected

Embroidered front of postcard and handwritten back of same postcard

Social distancing is keeping us apart, but the importance of connection in all its forms has never been clearer.

We hold our parties on Zoom, and our children are handwriting letters for the first time in their lives. 

Keeping in touch is both easier and harder than ever. 

This week, compose a message to someone you are missing during this period of isolation. Send a photo or film clip of your message to our Facebook Memory Bank group and tag us with #SLVMemoryBank.

About this collection item

This postcard, embroidered with the badge of the Australian Commonwealth Military Forces, was sent by a WWI soldier named Les to his sister, Hannah. For reasons unknown to us, he was 'locked up in isolation' when he wrote the card on 9 March 1918.

Les' message to his sister sticks to innocuous topics like the weather, but two weeks later he wrote a far more revealing postcard to a friend. His later message offers a cheeky glimpse into the social life of an Anzac soldier on leave: 'My word I have had some fun with the Blighty tarts; they like Aussies.'

Postcards from this period are both miniature works of art and rich sources of personal observation. The Library's collection includes 6000 of Shirley Jones' postcards, of which this is one.

How to respond

Please feel welcome to respond as creatively or literally as you wish.

We collect all kinds of materials including photos, diary entries, letters, written lists, oral histories, poems and objects ... our collection policy covers almost everything you could imagine, so try us!

If you contribute, we may contact you to discuss collecting and using your images, stories, objects and experiences. We may not be able to accept everything, but we will endeavour to do so! With your permission, your contributions may be added to the State Collection or used in future Library programs.

For this reason, please ask your respondent to save the message that you send them!

About The Collective Isolation Project

The Collective Isolation Project aims to cement this current moment in history, and is our inaugural Memory Bank campaign.

More to explore