Discover stories behind the latest exhibitions, fascinating explorations into maritime science and archaeology, and the surprising details of what happens inside (and outside) a modern working museum.

Japanned papier-mâché tea tray bearing the patent mark of Henry Clay and painted with a scene of the death of Captain Cook. Image Andrew Frolows/ANMM

Anyone for tea?

15 Apr 2019

The death of Captain Cook may seem a bizarre scene for a tea tray, but such an item was the perfect gift for wealthy industrialist Henry Bolckow.

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Australian nurses preparing to depart Sydney, May 1940. Photographer: Samuel J Hood Studio, ANMM Collection 00020450

In celebration of military nurses

10 Apr 2019

With the continued public interest in medical-based period dramas thanks to the wildly popular BBC series Call The Midwife, we thought it would be a great time to showcase some fabulous images of wartime military nurses from our collection. 

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Sailors' weather lore - myth or meterology? Image: moisseyev/istock.

Red sky at night, sailor's delight?

23 Mar 2019

Sailors' weather lore  myth or meteorology? When European sailors began arriving on Australian shores, they brought with them a host of sayings about the weather. What truth was there in these, and were any of them relevant to conditions in the southern hemisphere?

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Johanna Goggins is one of the Irish famine orphans who is inscribed on the Welcome Wall.  Image: Kim Tao/ANMM.

Remembering the Irish famine orphans

17 Mar 2019

Today some 80 million people worldwide claim Irish ancestry, including an estimated seven million Australians. For St Patrick’s Day, we take a look at the story of the destitute Irish orphans who arrived in Australia 170 years ago at the height of the Great Famine.

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Piecing together a 200 million year puzzle. Image: MNF/CSIRO

Investigating a rocky relationship

15 Mar 2019

Australia is surrounded by deep, mysterious oceans. The RV Investigator to explores these depths. But who is conducting the groundbreaking science on board? Enter Dr Joanne Whittaker, marine geophysicist, and Dr Rebecca Carey, volcanologist. Together they are gathering data to unlock the ancient history of the sea floor...

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When going to the beach required pyjamas

11 Mar 2019

There's a reason people are still so fascinated with the art deco style of the 1920s and 1930s...  Take these stylish 'beach pyjamas' from the museum's archives, for example. Why make a trip to the seaside looking drab when you could look fabulous?

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: The author (right) and Irini Malliaros from the Silentworld Foundation use ‘old school’ methods to obtain measurements of the Admiralty Old Pattern Long-Shanked Anchor found in the shallows at Boot Reef. Image: Julia Sumerling/Silentworld Foundation.

An anchor’s secrets revealed

07 Mar 2019

In December last year, maritime archaeologists and researchers from the museum and the Silentworld Foundation conducted a shipwreck survey of Boot Reef in the Coral Sea. While searching for the wreck of the Lancashire Lass, they also discovered something at the end of a large, long chain...

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