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Souvenir programme - Victory Celebrations signing of Peace - Sydney, New South Wales 1919

Date: 1919
Dimensions:
Overall: 245 x 157 mm, 120 kg
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Peter Collins AM RFD QC
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Booklet
Object No: 00034296
Related Place:Sydney,

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    Description
    A souvenir program for the victory celebrations in Sydney on 19 July, 1919.It contains a summary of the terms of the peace treaty (Treaty of Versailles) that was signed on 28 June 1919 as well as the various official and sporting events held in Sydney to mark this important date. Events included rowing regattas, motor boat races, sailing regattas and naval and military personnel events.
    SignificanceThe return home of solders from the war and the peace celebrations that followed, were for many a bittersweet event. Despite peace after years of war, Australia had suffered heavy losses and many returned servicemen had been permanently injured and suffered lifetime scars. Returning home for them was a new set of challenges. The peace parade was an effort by a grateful nation to recognize the ultimate sacrifice made by so many and to celebrate the return home of those that were able. Much was made also of Australia’s new international profile and the pride that "Her voice is heard in the council of the world’s Powers".
    HistoryAlthough the war was over by the end of 1918, it was not until the signing of peace between nations in June 1919 that the world felt ready to formally celebrate. The 19th of July was designated Peace Day for the members of the British Empire. Despite protests by returned servicemen in some areas and countries who had been disillusioned by wartime experiences, their return home and the government, a parade was organized in Sydney for the 19 July 1919. "The State Government, as a compliment to the Allied nations, have prepared a scheme for the decoration and illumination of Macquarie Street. It is proposed to decorate sections of the street with the colours, coat-of-arms and other national emblems of each of the Allied nations. Remembering the Incapacitated In connection with the proposed naval and military parade arrangements are being made to provide accommodation for incapacitated returned sailors and soldiers on a special stand to be erected at the saluting base. Prior to taking up their positions they will, if possible, be taken in cars along the line of route to view the decorations" (Sunday Times, Sunday 8 June 1919).
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