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Children on a slippery slide on board HMAS AUSTRALIA II

Date: 6 December 1930
Medium: Glass plate negative
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Photographs
Object Name: Photograph
Object No: 00034839
Place Manufactured:Garden Island

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    Description
    This image depicts children on a slippery slide probably on board HMAS AUSTRALIA II. The event was the annual children's Christmas party and was hosted 6 December 1930.
    SignificanceThe Samuel J Hood photographic collection records an extensive range of maritime activity on Sydney Harbour, including sail and steam ships, naval ships, crew portraits, crews at work, ship interiors, stevedores loading and unloading cargo, port scenes, pleasure boats and harbourside social activities from the 1890s through to the 1950s. They are also highly competent artistic studies and views - Hood was regarded as an important figure in early Australian photojournalism. Hood’s maritime photographs are one of the most significant collections of such work in Australia.
    HistoryMelbourne's 'The Australasian' gave a detailed report of the festivities on board HMAS AUSTRALIA II on 6 December 1930:

    'Such A Party!

    On Saturday afternoon, December 6, Rear Admiral Evans and the officers of H.M.A.S. Australia gave a delightful party on board the warship, which was moored at Garden Island. It was a very gay function, where extreme youth and unsophisticated charm met, and "chased the glowing hours with flying feet." The day was lovely with floods of golden sunshine, and the whole ship's company entered with spirit into the proceedings, on which much thought and care had evidently been bestowed. Naval pinnaces took the excited little people in charge of mothers or nurses to the Australia, which was transformed into a fascinating playground. Even the great cannon on deck became festive and fired off salvos of multi-coloured balloons in an unexpected manner that simply thrilled the little guests. A huge crane - a most dignified munition-lifter - also entered into the spirit of the hour, and its cage, filled with children, swung out, right over the sea, and landed them again, awed, but happy on the deck, while a gigantic diver in his weird undersea costume would, if you shouted in his ear, answer questions and tell you marvellous things about the bottom of the sea. Slippery slides, Aunt Sally, and Punch and Judy, and all the other celebrities did their bit, and one of the greatest thrills was "Mickey the Mouse" who led the revels, and elicited screams of joy - one little guest was indeed so overthrilled by his antics that she had to be taken home, but most of the small guests were on the friendliest terms with him.

    Afternoon tea was served on deck at long tables, and jazz caps "from the farm yard" were immediately donned, and each little guest was presented with a box of chocolate with a picture of H.M.A.S. Australia on the lid. The reputation of the navy as hosts, always brilliant, was proved once more.'

    'SYDNEY', 13 December 1930, 'The Australasian', p 13. [http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article140836751]
    Additional Titles

    Assigned title: Civilians, sailors, officers on deck of HMAS CANBERRA

    Web title: Children on a slippery slide on board HMAS AUSTRALIA II

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