Dome levels 4 and 5 will be closed to the public from Monday 13 May to Friday 24 May. Visit our refreshed World of the Book exhibition from Saturday 25 May.

World War I

The Library’s extensive World War I collection is a great resource for historians, students, genealogists, returned soldiers and academics.

CEW Bean’s pre-eminent work Official history of Australia in the war of 1914–1918 is complemented by the official war histories of other nations. Our collection includes modern and classic analyses of historic battles, as well as enlistment, embarkation, casualty and cemetery records. We have descriptions of campaign and service medals, and lists of people who received citations, honours and awards. Find these resources by searching our catalogue by topic, or visit our research guide to discover key sources of information about Australians in the war.

We have regimental histories, books on weapons and tactics, and examinations of the campaigns in Gallipoli, France, Egypt, East Africa, Russia, Serbia and Italy. We hold books about the battles of the Somme, Cambrai, Ypres, Fromelles, Amiens, Pozières and lesser-known campaigns such as Isonzo and the Eastern Front. Our map collection contains a number of war atlases and includes trench maps.

Drawn from archives from across the globe, the First World War eresource offers online access to primary sources, covering topics like propaganda, recruitment, and the lives and experiences of men and women during the war.

Many of the Library’s Victorian World War I-era newspapers can be browsed or searched on the Trove Newspapers website, including 216 regional community newspapers digitised in a major project commemorating World War I. We also provide online access to wartime issues of international newspapers like The Times (London), Illustrated London News, Scotsman, Irish Independent and Freeman's Journal. The Newspaper Collection includes many more newspapers to explore.

Australian Manuscripts is home to many biographies, diaries, photograph albums, letters and audio interviews with veterans, providing personal accounts of the war and its battles.

Our Pictures Collection includes photographs, posters and postcards of battlefields and service people. It also illustrates how workers supported the effort from home.

Our Ephemera Collection includes propaganda, posters and pamphlets relating to Australia’s conscription referenda.

We also have rare Australian and overseas war magazines that are full of interesting photographs, military and weapon reports, dispatches, cartoons, letters and poetry.

The Library has digitised a large number of contemporary pamphlets dealing with the war, covering a range of topics and published in many languages.

More to explore