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Voyages of Discovery

Europeans had been searching for rich new lands in the Southern Hemisphere long before Captain James Cook arrived on the east coast of Australia in 1770. Explore the State Library's incredible maps, journals, drawings and books to understand how the pieces of our continent were gradually put together.

Alec Chisholm: Bush Naturalist and Benign Nationalist

Alec Chisholm (1890–1977) was once famous in Australia. Although that’s no longer so, he’s a man worth remembering. Journalist, historian, literary critic, naturalist, conservationist and encyclopaedia editor.

Celebration: Jewish Community Photographs

The images from this collection take us into the lives of a Sydney community, revealing it’s religious and community events.

Michael Riley

A Common Place displays 15 dramatic portraits of Moree Murries taken by Michael Riley, one of Australia’s leading Indigenous contemporary artists.

Conrad Martens and George Edwards Peacock - Sydney Artists

Artists have always been attracted to the natural beauty of Sydney Harbour and its foreshores. Darling Point particularly, with its natural beauty and impressive villas, was a popular subject for both artists and photographers alike.

Thomas Sutcliffe Mort

Sydney Harbour's natural beauty has always enticed residents to settle on its foreshores.

Family Keeps Us Going

Portraits and Stories of Families of Aboriginal Nations Living in South-West Sydney by Jagath Dheerasekara.

Writing at Gallipoli

First hand accounts of the ANZAC landing at Gallipoli on 25 April 1915.

Crowd source

These “hidden camera” photos of Sydney street life from the 1880s instantly transport us back in time.

The Dixson map collection

Explore the extensive collection of 16th to 20th century maps donated by Sir William Dixson

Thomas Livingstone Mitchell: mapmaker

A larger-than-life character whose passions included the study of fossils, poetry and the mechanical and scientific arts, Mitchell looms large in Australian colonial history.

Francis Greenway: convict architect

Francis Greenway (1777- 1837) produced some of the finest colonial buildings in Australia.

Bodyline cricket series, 1932-33

The controversial cricket series where England introduced an aggressive bowling style.

 

Architect of the screen

Eric Thompson’s career as an architect, artist and filmmaker highlights the close connection between architecture and design in the development of the film industry.

Catching a cab

A surprise bestseller in 1886, Fergus Hume’s The Mystery of a Hansom Cab continues to intrigue.