The 20th anniversary of the Australian Memory of the World Register sees ten new inscriptions bringing the total number of inscriptions on the Register to seventy-eight.
The year 2020 was the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the UNESCO Australian Memory of the World Committee. This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the Australian Memory of the World Register. To add to celebratory mood, ten new inscriptions were added on 26 February, bringing the total of inscriptions on the Register to seventy-eight.
This year’s new inscriptions are a rich trove of documentary heritage of significance to Australia. They have been nominated by a diverse range of institutions and organisations, ranging from national, state and university libraries, our national war museum and a parliamentary library, Indigenous councils and university centres of excellence, heritage networks, and migrant communities.
They encompass famous names in Australian history: William Bligh and HMS Bounty, military historian Charles Bean and leading feminist Jessie Street; and Indigenous communities and missions in the Western Desert and South Australia.
Gaps that have been identified in our Australian Register, particularly in the coverage of the performing and visual arts, are now addressed by three of these new inscriptions: two from the performing arts sector and one visual arts collection, the first from a commercial gallery in Australia.
The records of early European settlement in Australia have been augmented by documentation of the population of NSW a little more than a decade after the First Fleet landed in 1788. The stories of a migrant community from the mid-20th century onwards have been added to the larger Migration Stories Oral Histories inscription.
The new inscriptions are:
AusStage: The Australian Live Performance Database
The diaries, photographs and records of C.E.W. Bean, Australian War Memorial and the State Library of New South Wales
Estonian Oral Histories 1952-2020, Estonian Archives in Australia
J.C. Williamson Distributed Collection, Performing Arts Heritage Network
Johnstone Gallery Archive 1948-c1992 and Arthur Davenport Photographs 1955-1992, State Library of Queensland
Kaurna Children’s Letters, University Library, University of Adelaide
Log of HMS Bounty (William Bligh), State Library of New South Wales
Papers of Jessie Street, National Library of Australia
Settlers’ Muster Book, 1800, New South Wales Parliamentary Library
Western Desert Verbal Arts Collection, Ngaanyatjarra Council (Aboriginal Corporation) on behalf of the Ngaanyatjarra people; Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language, The Australian National University