Philip Bacon Heritage Gallery (level 4)
Student activity book

This document has been designed as an activity sheet which we recommend be downloaded as a PDF and printed for students to use.  Download the Philip Bacon Heritage Gallery student activity book  (PDF 165.8 KB)

Teacher notes:

Teachers may wish to sort students into small groups to work through the questions in this activity.

The questions are presented in order of the text panels in the exhibition.

Teachers may wish to allocate each group a text panel (i.e. The Coming of the War, or For God, King and Country) to start from and request that they move around the exhibition by following the questions in the order they appear in the activity book.

The Coming of the War

This text panel provides a brief overview of the war.

Do This: Read the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. Where was the war fought?
  2. For how long did it last?
  3. Name the allies and the enemies.

Before the War

This text panel provides a brief overview of the following:

  • Who was living in Queensland before the war, where they lived, where they worked.
  • How Australia’s ability to defend itself was starting to take shape after federation.

Do this: Read the text panel

Answer these questions

Answer True or False

  1. Before the war the majority of the population lived and worked in Brisbane.
  2. One of the reasons the White Australia policy was introduced was because Australians feared that if non-British people were allowed to immigrate they would take the jobs of white Australians.
  3. During the early 1900s many Australians feared being invaded.
  4. After federation Australia had a large national army.
  5. An Australian Navy was formed after federation.
  6. Before the war Queensland’s economy was based mainly upon primary industries such as growing sugar cane and farming livestock.
  7. The White Australia policy meant that before the war most Queenslanders were of British heritage.
  8. Before the war, anyone who was not British was not welcome in Queensland.

Do this: Have a look at the cartoon by A.J. Kingston, ‘Monarch’s Meeting, 1908’.

Read this: During the First World War, Russia and England were allies; bound together not only by written treaties and alliances but also by family. There is a cartoon of the King of England, King Edward VII and his cousin Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. This cartoon shows how the cousins, and in turn their countries, were bound by bloodlines and were loyal to each other. This loyalty would be sorely tested during the First World War.

To the Last Man

The text panel provides information about:

  • Australia’s ties with England
  • Queenslander’s initial attitudes toward the war

Do this: Read the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. Australia was only a young nation in 1915, true or false?
  2. During the early 1900s Australians still considered themselves as primarily English. Why was this? What three ways does the text say that Australia was tied to England?
  3. When did Britain enter the war?
  4. Who was Andrew Fisher?
  5. Complete the following statement:
    When Andrew Fisher said ‘Australians will stand beside the mother country to help and defend her to our last man and our last shilling’ he meant…….

  6. Were men keen to enlist at the start of the war? Yes or No.
  7. For how long did most people think the war would last?

For God, King and Country

This text panel examines:

  • Why young men were keen to enlist in the war
  • How they were persuaded to enlist

Do this: Read the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. Many young men enlisted because they thought the war would be over within a couple of months. What does paragraph one describe as being another powerful motivator?
  2. Name three groups which supported and encouraged men to enlist.
  3. Why were rallies held in Queensland?
  4. List the three aims of the first ANZAC day held in Queensland?
  5. Did opposition to the war increase or decrease with time?
  6. How were people who opposed the war viewed?
  7. A Queensland Recruiting Committee was established in June 1915. What were some methods they used to recruit eligible men? Answers can be found by looking at the surrounding images on the wall and in the display box.

    Read this: In order to boost enlistment numbers patriotic songs and even stage plays full of phrases such as ‘loyalty to the Empire’ and ‘We’ll Never Let the Old Flag Fall’ were written and performed across Queensland. They were typically played and performed at recruiting rallies and concerts. They were designed to stir emotion into action and entice eligible men to enlist. They also reminded Queenslanders why they were sending their young men and women off to fight a war on the other side of the world.

    Do this: Look at the objects found in the display box. There are three songs, two concert programs and one play. Can you locate them?

    Answer these questions

    You are listening to a recruitment song.

  8. What is it called?
  9. Where was it performed?

You will find the answer on the text label in the display box to the right, which contains several photographs.

Your Country Needs You

This text panel examines the following:

  • Reasons for enlisting
  • How men were recruited
  • Indigenous Australians reasons for enlisting

Do this: Read paragraph 1 of the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. Of the 20,000 Australians who initially enlisted, how many came from Queensland?
  2. Approximately what percentage of the total number was this?* Answer not found in text

    Think about this question

  3. At the outbreak of war, Australia consisted of six states and two territories. Given the numbers above what do you think about Queensland’s contribution to the war? Do you think this was a reflection of the support for the war at the time?

    Do this: Read paragraphs 2 – 6 of the text panel

    Answer these questions

  4. List six reasons why Queenslanders wanted to enlist
  5. List two ways Queenslanders were encouraged to enlist
  6. Many Indigenous Australians enlisted to fight during the war. Were they officially allowed to enlist?
  7. Why did recruiting officers allow Indigenous Australians to enlist?
  8. List two reasons why Indigenous men wanted to enlist?
  9. When did recruitment figures peak?
  10. Why did they decline after this?
  11. What did the decline in figures force the government to consider?

    Do this: Look at the recruitment posters, songs and images of recruitment rallies found in this room.

    Think about these questions

  12. How do you think they made young men and women feel?
  13. How do you think eligible men who did not enlist might have felt?
  14. How do you think they might have been treated?

Anti-Germanism: the Beastly Hun

This text panel examines the following:

  • Queenslanders feelings towards Germany and Germans living in Queensland
  • Anti-German propaganda

Do this: Read the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. List 5 mediums (methods) which were used to promote patriotism and nationalism at the start of the war?

    Read this: Atrocity propaganda was used extensively throughout the war. Atrocity propaganda refers to the exaggeration of crimes committed by the enemy. It turned enemy war crimes into ‘atrocities’ and played on public fears.

    Answer these questions

  2. Why did ‘atrocity’ propaganda emerge during the war?
  3. How did anti-German propaganda impact upon Germans living in Queensland during the war?
  4. How does this text panel describe the mood of the Queensland public at the time?
    P _ _ _ _ _ _ d
  5. List some other groups in Queensland that fell under suspicion during the war.
    _ _ i _ h C _ _ _ _ _ _ c _
    T _ _ d _ u _ _ _ n _ _ _ s
    S _ c _ _ _ _ s _ s
  6. Did this suspicion and paranoia of different groups in Queensland continue after the war?

    Do this: Locate the three German atrocities propaganda posters on the wall beginning with the one with a large ? on it.

    Think about these questions

    Poster 1: A lot of symbolism has been used in this poster.
    How is Germany represented?
    What is on Germany’s hands?
    Where does the blood initially fall on the map?
    Where does the blood extend and what does this suggest?
    What do you think the question mark represents?

    Poster 2:
    What reasons does it give for Australia’s involvement in the war?
    What does it say Australia owes Great Britain?
    Which two countries within the British Empire had already enacted conscription?

    Do this: Look at the photographs in the corner of the room. They represent Germans living in Queensland before and during the war. Read the text label that begins with the words Pre-war Queensland……

    Answer true or false to these questions

  7. Queensland had the highest percentage of Germans living in Australia.
  8. German immigrants were considered lazy and were unwelcome in Queensland.
  9. German immigrants brought few skills with them.
  10. Germans were viewed with suspicion after the outbreak of war.
  11. German immigrants still continued to practice cultural days such as German Empire Day during the war.
  12. No Germans from Queensland were interned (placed in prisoner camps) during the war.

Will You Be Next

This text panel examines the following:

  • Queensland’s feelings towards conscription
  • Results of the conscription referenda

Do this: Read paragraphs 1 and 2 of the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. How many conscription referenda were held and in what years?
  2. What was the result of each referendum? Which got the most vote, Yes or No?

    Read this: After news of the Gallipoli campaign and the 1916 Somme offensive (Battle of the Somme) filtered back to Australia, recruitment rates dropped. The Labor Prime Minister of the time, Billy Hughes, thought conscription would be the best way to solve the shortage of men enlisting. To enact conscription he needed the support of his government and they would not support him until they were sure the public agreed with the idea of conscription. In view of this Billy Hughes decided to hold a public vote (referendum). He asked the Australian public to vote ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ for conscription. It caused great debate across the country.

    Do this: Read paragraphs 3 of the text panel

  3. What were people who opposed conscription labelled?
  4. What were people who supported conscription accused of?
  5. Queensland was one of three states to vote ‘No’ absolutely. What do you think this means?

    Read this: Prime Minister Billy Hughes was confident the public would vote ‘Yes’ in the conscription referenda. So confident in fact that he had proclamation (official announcement) posters printed before the referendum telling men how they were required to enlist. When the referendum returned a ‘No’ vote, this poster and others like it, became redundant (of no use).

    Do this: Read the proclamation poster then answer True or False to the following statements. If the statement is False, write the correct answer next to it.

    True or False

  6. G.F. Pearce was the Governor-General at the time.
  7. Men between the age of 21 and 35 were encouraged to enlist.
  8. Married men would have been required to enlist.
  9. Queen Victoria was the ruling British monarch at the time.

    Do this: Read the Proclamations Reinforcement Referendums poster. It is a pro-conscription poster explaining how conscription would work if passed and was displayed throughout Queensland before the referendum.

  10. How many men did Australia need to provide each month to maintain its war effort?
  11. How did the government propose to call eligible men up? Finish this sentence, Men would be called up by
  12. List five criteria for exemption:

Who Threw the Egg?

This text panel examines the following:

  • Queensland’s feelings towards conscription
  • How the federal Labor government tried to control the conscription debate in Queensland

Read this: At the beginning of the war the Labor Party held power in Federal Parliament and the Liberal Party held power in the Queensland Parliament. Soon after the outbreak of war, Labor won power in Queensland.

Do This: Read paragraph 1 of the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. Knowing that the prefix ‘anti’ means ‘against’ and the prefix ‘pro’ means ‘for’, who were the Queensland State Liberal Party at the start of the war, for and against?

    For (pro)

    Against (anti)

  2. Did both Queensland parties, Liberal and Labor, initially support the war?
  3. What was the name of the Queensland Labor Party leader?
  4. What year did Labor win power in Queensland?
  5. What was the name of the Federal Labor Party leader (The Prime Minister)?

    Read this: As the war progressed the Labor Prime Minister, Billy Hughes, asked Queensland to vote for or against conscription. T. J. Ryan, Queensland’s Labor Premier, was finding it difficult to maintain support for the idea of conscription. Hughes saw this as ‘disloyal’ and in turn tried to suppress the anti-conscription movement in Queensland. One way he tried to do this was through censorship. Hughes appointed a government official to censor anything that might influence Queenslanders to vote ‘No’. Hughes did not censor any material that supported the conscription debate.

    Do this: Have a look at the Memorandum to all Postmasters 5 June 1916. Read the label card then the letter.

    Answer these questions

  6. Label card: List what the Assistant Censor was allowed to censor.
  7. Letter: Who was the letter addressed to?
  8. What is the date on the letter?
  9. How many years into the war is this?
  10. What does it ask this person to do?

    Read this: In 1917, Prime Minister Hughes spoke at a pro-conscription rally in Warwick.

    Do this: Read the label card in the display box between the letter and the pink telegram to find out more about what happened at the rally.

    Answer these questions

  11. Where was Hughes pelted with eggs?
  12. Were the offenders arrested? Why/Why not?
  13. How did Hughes initially react to this result?
  14. After the rally what did Hughes do?
  15. What did the Commonwealth Police Force have to do with this incident? 

    Do this: Look at the Queensland cartoons drawn in response to this incident.

    Answer these questions

  16. Which leader do these cartoons support, Prime Minister Hughes or Queensland Premier T. J. Ryan?
  17. Who does the cartoon titled Who Threw That Egg by James Case depict as having thrown the egg?

Comforts From Home

This text panel examines the following:

  • How Queenslanders at home supported those serving

Read this: After the war began, many new organisations were established to support those serving on the front line. One way they did this was by gathering and sending the troops things they needed such as socks, clothes etc. Every parcel received from home provided not only physical support for the troops but also the knowledge that they were not forgotten and that their sacrifice was greatly appreciated. As well as helping those serving on the front line, these organisations also gave those left at home a sense that they were contributing to the war effort.

Do this: Read paragraphs 1 – 4 of the text panel.

Answer these questions

  1. The Red Cross Society was typical of the type of support organisations which existed at the time. List some of the ways it helped those serving at the front.

  2. Comfort funds were money raised for goods which would provide ‘comfort’ to those serving on the front line. What types of goods did comfort fund organisations purchase and send to the troops?

    Do this: Read the text label and look at the photographs on display.

    Think about these questions

  3. What are the two women doing?
  4. Look at the photograph of the women with the young boy standing in front. Who do you think these women are? Why do you think this?
  5. Look at the photograph in the brown frame. What are the people packing?
  6. What do you notice about the flag sticking out of the right hand side of the pram? Read the text label to discover why this is.

    Do this: Have a look at the objects and text panel in the display cabinet.

    Answer these questions

  7. Patriotic memorabilia was distributed in Queensland and throughout Australia in an effort to remind people why Australia was at war.
    List 4 patriotic items found in this cabinet.
  8. In order to raise funds, different organisations held events such as concerts. What was the name of the concert held on Tuesday 23rd July 1918?
  9. Each Battalion had its own Comfort Fund attached to it. What are the two Queensland Battalions shown in the open book

Read this: Each Battalion had their own colours. Look at the diamond shape drawn above the Battalion names. The 26th Battalion colours were purple and blue. If you have already visited the SLQ exhibition in SLQ Gallery, you may have seen this symbol before, if not look out for it when you do.


This text panel examines the following:

  • How the war affected everyday Queenslanders
  • How soldiers were treated once they returned home

Do this: Read the text panel

Answer these questions

  1. When did the war end?
  2. How many Queenslanders went overseas
  3. How many did not make it home?
  4. Did everyone who came home returned unharmed?
    Explain your answer.
  5. Was every soldier who died overseas buried in a marked grave?
  6. How did the community try to honour and remember those who had died?
  7. What were soldiers given when they returned home?
  8. Was it successful? Why/why not?
  9. Did all soldiers who returned home receive the same rewards and recognitions?
    Explain your answer
  10. How would you describe Queensland after the war?

    Do This: Look at the images and the text labels in this area.

    Answer this question

  11. List at least three ways Queenslanders celebrated when Queensland soldiers returned home from the war?

    Do This: Have a look at the images of the returned soldiers, beginning with the image taken by David Wilmott Hooper.

    Think about these questions

  12. What do you notice about these soldiers?
  13. How do you think David is feeling? Why do you think this?

    Do This: Look at the text label with the first line, ‘Henry Binnie McCall Challinor’. Read the text at the bottom of the label.

    Answer these questions

  14. What were many returned servicemen resentful of?

    True or False

  15. There was a shortage of eligible men to marry after the war.
  16. All soldiers fitted easily back into life at home.

    Do This: Look at the text label with the first line, ‘Unknown Photographer’. Read the text at the bottom of the label.

  17. Explain what soldier settlements were.

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