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state library of queensland
John Oxley Library

Maryborough Peace Cake, 1919

By Myles Sinnamon, Engagement Officer, State Library of Queensland | 26 November 2015

This photograph from State Library of Queensland's collection was taken on April 29, 1919 in Maryborough. The cake was specially made for the Mayoral Victory Ball at Maryborough's Town Hall to celebrate the end of the First World War. The night's program featured dancing, music provide by a 'Naval Band' and a 30 foot model airship to be suspended from the ceiling. The main attraction however was the massive 'Peace Cake'.

Peace Cake in Maryborough April 1919. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. neg 46488

The Maryborough Chronicle reported on the intricate details behind the design of the Peace Cake.

"Messrs Stellmach and Sons, the well-known bakers, were commissioned on short notice to prepare a cake worthy of the occasion, and in fulfilling the order have combined skill and ingenuity, and marked artistic taste, with most pleasing results. The cake stands about 5 feet high (1.5 metres), is approximately 24 inches in diameter (61 cms), and weight from three-quarters to one hundredweight (38 to 51 kgs)."

'Peace Angel' on the Maryborough Peace Cake

"No trouble or expense has been spared in the decorations. Hovering over the cake is the 'Angel of Peace', accompanied by white doves. There are four stories, separated by silver stands. Pretty ornaments symbolic of the great peace event are neatly arranged on the different tiers. Battleships, cannon, lighthorsemen, the British lion and bull dog, the rose, shamrock and thistle (representing England, Ireland and Scotland), rifles, the emu and kangaroo, are among the list of dainty adornments."

Decorations on the Maryborough Peace Cake, 1919

Myles Sinnamon - Project Coordinator, State Library of Queensland


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