Stories

Featured stories

The Story of May Gibbs

May Gibbs, author, illustrator and cartoonist, has captured the hearts and imaginations of generations of Australians with her lovable bush characters and fairytale landscapes.

The Dixson map collection

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

Harry Seidler collection

Designs and photographs from Australia's best known modernist architect.

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.

The Bowman flag

Our first coat of arms? The first recorded use of the kangaroo and emu supporting a shield is found on the Bowman Flag of 1806.

Eureka! The rush for gold

The gold rushes and the diggers who worked the goldfields are etched into Australian folklore. Follow the story of the people who sought the glittering prize.

Magna Carta

The Library holds a rare manuscript version of the 1297 statute of the Magna Carta that was signed by King John at Runnymede.

Convict artists in the time of Governor Macquarie

Many used their art to record and interpret the landscape and people of the early settlement.

Francis Greenway: convict architect

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

David Unaipon

A great inventor, an Indigenous rights advocate and Australia's first published Aboriginal writer.

The Sydney Royal Easter Show

Formed to encourage and promote the future of agriculture in the colony.

The Wallis album

The discovery and acquisition of a fascinating album compiled by Captain James Wallis reveals the artistic collaborations between a commandant and a convict.

The Spanish quest for Terra Australis

Spanish explorer Pedro Fernandes de Queirós' quest to discover Terra Australis is documented in a number of rare 'memorials' held by the Library.

A maiden over

"I thought they’d bowl lobs, but by Jove, they can play."

Bodyline cricket series, 1932-33

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