Stories

Featured stories

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.

Reconstructing the Holtermann

What do you do when one of the world’s largest wet-plate glass negatives, weighing over 30 kilos, smashes into hundreds of pieces?

Boy oh boy!

In 25 years at the State Library, our Curator of Photographs has seen four people cry.

Colour In Darkness

Hand-coloured scenes from the First World War are displayed together for the first time in almost 100 years.

Shakespeare 400

Commemorating the life and work of William Shakespeare and marking the 400th anniversary of his death in 2016.

State Library’s digitised collections showcased by Google’s Cultural Institute

In 2015 the Library began sharing some of its digitised collections on Google’s Cultural Institute. This is a free site to discover exhibits and collections from museums, libraries, galleries and archives all around the world.

Biography and me: Notes on the wonders of self (and some on self)

Kim Williams AM presented the 2015 National Biography Award Lecture.  He discussed a variety of biographies which have mattered to him and also his own critically acclaimed memoir Rules of Engagement.

The Holtermann Collection

In 1951, a hoard of 3,500 glass plate negatives from the nineteenth century was discovered in a garden shed in Chatswood.

The Tasman Map

The story of the Tasman Map is a tale of mystery, discovery and a chance finding on the Nullarbor Plain.

Success Story: The Mitchell Campaign

A passionate group of benefactors collaborated to support the refurbishment of the ground floor of the Mitchell wing.