How does a book begin? I can pinpoint the exact moment when the idea for what became The Crying Years popped into my head. Almost five years ago, National Library of Australia pictures curator Nicky Mackay-Sim presented a talk to the Canberra Great War Study Group—otherwise known as The Estaminet.
In February 2016, near the end of a bright, hot summer, the National Library of Australia welcomed long-anticipated changes to the Copyright Act with genuine excitement. For the first time in its history, the Library could at last collect electronic publications under the legal deposit provisions of the Act.
The citizens of Port Adelaide now have a stronger presence in Trove, with the addition of five digitised newspaper titles focusing on the region. Support for this digitisation was achieved through a partnership with urban development agency Renewal SA and the State Library of South Australia, bringing the total of South Australian newspapers titles in Trove to 120.
As the Visitor Services Officer I am often asked about what to see at the Library. I always recommend visiting the Treasures Gallery to get a visual snapshot of Australian history as presented through the collection. There is a focus on twentieth century material relating to the development of rights for First Nations people, particularly the 1967 constitutional referendum. The best way to appreciate why these items are so significant is to look back through the colonial era displays and find Tommy McRae’s sketchbook.