State Library content, loved by millions across the world!
Our collection's value is in its use! For staff at the State Library it's exciting to see the diverse ways our collection is being used by the public, not only in Queensland but across the world! Two platforms that have been very successful in helping State Library make our digitised photographic collection accessible to the world is Wikipedia and Flickr.
How popular?.....From July to December 2021 State Library images uploaded to Wikimedia Commons were viewed over 42 million times! In December 2021 images uploaded to State Library's Flickr Commons account hit a total of 30 million views.
To celebrate, let's take a look at what content is the most viewed on each platform and where our images are used. The results might surprise you!
In 2011, in partnership with the Wikimedia Foundation, 50,000 copyright-free Queensland images from State Library's collections were made available through Wikimedia Commons. This was the largest collection donated by an Australian cultural institution and the fourth largest collection made available on the site since the establishment of Wikimedia Commons, an online repository of free-use images, sound and other media files.
Where did these images end up? Let's take a look at the top 5 most viewed Wikipedia pages containing State Library photographs.
Number 5 - Dianne Cilento with Peter Finch, London, 1954. Negative number: 194558.
The 5th most viewed Wikipedia page containing a State Library of Queensland photograph is the Academy Award for Best Actor page. Embedded in the page is a cropped photo of English-Australian actor Peter Finch who won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Howard Beale in Network (1976), becoming the first and, to date, only actor to win this award posthumously. At the time of writing, the Wikipedia page and photograph has been viewed over 129,000 times.
The State Library photograph is of Queensland actress Dianne Cilento with Peter Finch during the filming for their movie together, Passage Home (1955).
Number 4 - Fourex beer advertisement by Castlemaine Perkins Ltd., 1920. Negative number: 150402.
The 4th most viewed Wikipedia page containing a State Library of Queensland photograph is the XXXX (beer) page. We are not surprised the Milton Mango page made the list! Embedded in the page is a State Library photograph of a 1920s Fourex beer advertisement by Castlemaine Perkins released in connection with the Prince of Wales' visit to Queensland. The advertisement features the cartoon character of Mr Fourex being Queensland's very own "Prince of Good Fellows". At the time of writing, the Wikipedia page and photograph has been viewed over 275,000 times.
Number 3 - Diane Cilento, 1954. Negative number: 194556.
The 3rd most viewed Wikipedia page containing a State Library of Queensland photograph is very surprisingly the Sean Connery page! How did Queensland content end up on a Scottish actor's page? Well it's a cropped picture of Queensland actress Diane Cilento who was Sean Connery's first wife.
Embedded in the Sean Connery page is a photograph of Diane Clilento in 1954. Diane Cilento was born in Mooloolaba, Queensland, in 1933. She was one of six children of Lady Phyllis and Sir Raphael Cilento, both eminent doctors. Diane achieved international acclaim as a stage and screen actor in the 1950s and 1960s, featuring in over 30 movies and earning an Academy Award nomination for her work in "Tom Jones" (1963). She was a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. Her marriage to actor Sean Connery in 1962 attracted feverish attention the world over. She turned her back on stardom in the 1970s. After her marriage to Sean Connery ended in 1973 she moved to the rainforest of North Queensland where she ran the Karnak Playhouse until her passing in 2011. At the time of writing, the Wikipedia page and photograph has been viewed over 287,000 times.
Number 2 - Duke and Duchess of York at Eagle Farm Racecourse, Brisbane, 1927. Negative number: 65218.
The 2nd most viewed Wikipedia page containing a State Library of Queensland photograph is the George VI page. The photograph embedded in the page is of the Duke and Duchess of York at Eagle Farm Racecourse, Brisbane, 7 April 1927.
The primary reason for the Duke and Duchess of York's 1927 Royal visit to Australia was to open parliament in Canberra but the Royal couple also visited Queensland between the 5th and 12th April. They travelled by train from the border town of Wallangarra to Toowoomba; Gatton to Beaudesert; Brisbane and Tweed Heads, stopping everywhere in between. During their visit the Royals wanted to meet as many Queenslanders as possible but they prioritised visiting returned soldiers, new settlers, war widows, bereaved mothers and school children. The Duke of York laid a wreath at the Toowong Cemetery Cross of Sacrifice and visited Rosemount Repatriation Hospital. While in Brisbane the couple visited the Royal National Agricultural and Industrial Show (the EKKA) , the Eagle Farm Racecourse for the running of the Duke of York Stakes (where this photograph was taken) and the University of Queensland where the Duke was granted an honorary Law Degree. The couple also got to enjoy some rest and relaxation time with private visits to the stations “Coochin Coochin” near Boonah and “Tamrookum” near Beaudesert.
You can read more about the Duke and Duchess of York's visit to Eagle Farm Racecourse in this newspaper article by the Telegraph on the 7 April 1927.
At the time of writing, the Wikipedia page and photograph has been viewed over 423,000 times.
Number 1 - Guests seated on stage in front of a backdrop of giant posters at the Aid to Soviet Congress, Brisbane City Hall October, 1941. Negative number: 105739.
The number 1 most viewed Wikipedia page containing a State Library of Queensland photograph is (drum roll)........... the Winston Churchill page! A surprising result but our photograph of giant posters of Churchill and Stalin at the Aid to Soviet Congress event held in Brisbane's City Hall perfectly sums up the sentiment at the time where Queenslanders were supporting the British and Russian war effort to defeat the NAZIs during the Second World War.
On the evening of the 31st October 1941 3,000 people attended the opening of the Aid to Soviet Congress, organised to support closer military, cultural, trade and diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union. A collection raised 155 pounds. Speakers at the Congress included Mr G. C. Taylor, MLA, President of the Australian-Russian Association. A huge portrait of the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, was a feature of the stage decorations. You can read more about the Aid to Soviet Congress event in this newspaper article by the Courier Mail on the 1 November 1941.
At the time of writing, the Wikipedia page and photograph has been viewed over 472,000 times!!!
In 2008, State Library joined with other cultural institutions world-wide, uploading a selection of images linked to Queensland’s people and places on Flickr Commons. This global initiative was an exciting new phase for sharing Queensland content - increasing worldwide exposure to our collections. By placing out-of-copyright images of Queensland onto Flickr Commons, State Library invited wider sharing and encouraged new audiences to access curated content in albums, allowing them to explore the vast collections of the State Library. At the time of writing we have over 7,500 images available through Flickr Commons and 277 curated albums. New content is being added regularly.
So out of all those images which photographs are the most popular and have the most all time views?.....let's find out!
Number 5 - Trick dog jumping through a ring of fire. Image number: 7708-0001-0071.
The 5th most viewed State Library of Queensland photograph on Flickr Commons is 'Trick dog jumping through a ring of fire'. We weren't surprised about this one. It's a pretty impressive photograph of man's best friend performing a death defying, highly trained trick. The photograph is from the collection, 7708 George Jackman Photograph Albums 1920-1945. George Jackman was the Gold Coast correspondent for the Courier Mail and the Daily Mail from the 1920's to the 1940's. His collection contains newspaper shots as well as personal images of the Gold Coast, Brisbane and southeast Queensland.
Number 4 - Young women enjoying a day at the beach at Southport, 1940. Negative number: 201111.
The 4th most viewed State Library of Queensland photograph on Flickr Commons is 'Young women enjoying a day at the beach at Southport, 1940', a classic Queensland photo of two 1940s beauties fashionably dressed at a Gold Coast beach. One of the women wears a bathing suit and holds a pair of sunglasses; the other wears a play suit and holds a conical bamboo hat.
Number 3 - Motor bike racer getting a push start at the track, Brisbane. Image number: 7708-0001-0152.
The 3rd most viewed State Library of Queensland photograph on Flickr Commons is 'Motor bike racer getting a push start at the track, Brisbane'. Photographs of vintage motorbikes, cars, boats, planes, any mode of transport really, have always been popular with State Library clients. This photograph is also from the collection 7708 George Jackman Photograph Albums 1920-1945.
Number 2 - Young women running over a sand dune on an unidentified beach, ca. 1935. Negative number: 45726.
The 2nd most viewed State Library of Queensland photograph on Flickr Commons is another bathing beauties photograph, 'Young women running over a sand dune on an unidentified beach, ca. 1935'. We don't have much information on the background of this photograph so if you know anything more please comment on the blog below.
Number 1 - Four boys riding goats at Isisford, Queensland, ca. 1918. Negative number: 10258.
The number 1 most viewed State Library of Queensland photograph on Flickr Commons is (drum roll)...........Four boys riding goats at Isisford, Queensland, ca. 1918!
Why goat riding you may ask? Believe it or not our collection is full of goat riding images. Besides being used as livestock, goats were also used as transport and to pull carts. As early as the late 19th century it was common for people living in rural Queensland to ride goats or hitch a hand-made cart to the family’s billy goat. 'Billy Carts' originated because billy goats were the preferred animal to pull smaller carts designed to transport people or goods. Billy goats were not only a practical part of people’s lives, they provided a source of entertainment, joy and independence.