The Library is open over the October long weekend, with reduced hours on Monday 2 October 2023. View the long weekend opening hours here.

Journals of the First Fleet

The State Library holds an unrivalled collection of journals from the First Fleet. Written by naval and marine corps officers, as well as seamen and surgeons, these journals paint, in vivid detail, the voyage to and early settlement of Australia between 1787 and the 1790s.

Read the transcripts here.

Discover Exhibitions, stories and more


Saturday 6 October 2018 to Sunday 5 May 2019

Our UNESCO World Heritage collections displayed together for the very first time.

First Fleet Collection

The First Fleet Collection includes journals, letters, drawings, maps and charts created by those who travelled with the First Fleet of British ships to Australia. It is one of the Library’s most significant and valuable collections.

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.