Tag SLQ's photos in Flickr Commons

The State Library of Queensland has more than 1.5 million photographs in its collection dating back to the late 1800s. Just over 60,000 are available online. Many photographs are missing information about who is in the photo, when it was taken, where it is and what’s happening in the image. You can help us to add value to these photographs by tagging them in Flickr Commons. We'll know more about the photos and it will be easier for people to find them online.

Before you start, you will need to create an account in Flickr or log in with Facebook, Google or Yahoo.

Tips and tricks for tagging:
Choose a photo you'd like to tag, then click on the “add a tag” tab in the bottom right corner of the page. Add keywords, things you can see, what people are doing, or words to describe the mood of the photo.

Get tagging:
Choose one of the assignments below to get tagging in Flickr Commons - World War 1 portraits, Fashion of the 1920s and 30s and Gold! Gold!.

Current assignments

 Soldier portrait before leaving Australia

One hundred years since World War One, the State Library of Queensland has provided portraits of men in uniforms during World War 1 from our collection. Help to identify, connect and tell the personal stories behind our World War 1 soldiers.

Difficulty: Beginner

Two little babies sitting on the grass each wearing caps and warm jumpers

Photographs of children are fascinating, not least because the way babies have been dressed over the last century has radically changed. Do you know the difference between a bonnet and romper, a matinee jacket and a presentation blanket? Help us by tagging the photos in this gorgeous collection.

Difficulty: Beginner

Chinese workers carrying bananas to a train near Innisfail

Chinese migrants, mostly from Guangzhou Province, arrived in north Queensland in large numbers in the wake of the Palmer River gold rush of the 1870s. After the gold had been worked out they settled in townships such as Cairns, Cooktown, Innisfail and Atherton, becoming merchants and market gardeners, or working on banana plantations. Today, the carefully restored Chinese temples, or “joss houses”, in a number of Queensland cities and towns, are a poignant reminder of the contribution made by early Chinese migrants to the development of Queensland.

Ideas for tags: joss house, silk, Cooktown. If you recognise someone, you could tag their name, or if the photo is of a place such as plantation, or town, you could use those names as tags.
Difficulty: Beginner

Maude Rose Lores Bonney Queensland aviatrix ca 1935

State Library of Queensland has several photographs depicting unidentified people, places and times. Can you help to solve some of the mysteries? We invite you to add information to these photographs if you know who might be in the photograph or where it is. There might also be other clues relating to people's dress and the architecture that could help you to date the image.

Difficulty: Intermediate

Gold digger panning for gold Queensland

The first major gold discovery in Queensland was made in 1867 by a prospector named James Nash near what is now the town of Gympie. News of the find caused great excitement in the colony and soon great numbers of would-be miners flocked to the area. As prospectors spread out across the state, other gold rich areas were soon exploited, particularly in the far north of Queensland. Various techniques were used to extract the gold, depending on the nature and the location of the deposits. Help us identify places, people and equipment in these fascinating photographs that show some of the diverse and challenging experiences of prospectors and miners and the environments they worked in.

Difficulty: Beginner

Young women modelling for an advertisement at Surfers Paradise 1951

There are hundreds of photographs showing the life and fashion style of Queenslanders in the 1920s and 30s. We need your help to tag the garments people wore as well as the activities they took part in.

Ideas for tags: cloche hats, flapper, shorts, swimwear, sash, bow, satin, velvet
Start here: 1920s fashion, 1930s fashion. If you're keen to keep going, try some tagging in the 1940s and 1950s albums.
Difficulty: Beginner

Tell us what you’ve been working on

We’d like to hear all about your discoveries and hard work. We want to celebrate with you! Email us at discovery@slq.qld.gov.au
Share on SLQ's Facebook page
Start a conversation on Twitter by using this hashtag: #pitchinslq

Completed assignments

Queensland bands

These photographs showcase some rare and vibrant moments in Queensland’s musical history. Can you name the band/ensemble and the instruments? What are they doing? Name the venue or town and the year if you know it. Who is the Conductor/Director or can you name any other people in the photo?

Ideas for  tags: banjo, trumpet, violin, drum, marching, seated, band, music
Start here: Strike up the band
Difficulty: Beginner

Darling Downs - The Way We Were

Life in Toowoomba and the surrounding Darling Downs Region has changed drastically over the past hundred or so years. Those who read The Chronicle will have seen the regular posts of historical photos from the region under the headline "The Way We Were". Now you can also tag those photos in Flickr too.

Ideas for tags: Toowoomba, Chinchilla, Darling Downs, The way we were, The Chronicle
Start here: Darling Downs
Difficulty: Beginner

Bottles, boxes and jars

These vibrant images are of commercial packaging for Queensland food and beverage products. Some of the brands are still operating across Queensland such as Wimmers in Cooroy and Castlemaine Perkins in Brisbane. The vivid colours and branding are a hive of creativity just waiting to be tagged!

Start here: Bottles, boxes and jars
Ideas for tags: brewery, Cooroy, beverage, graphic design, label. Or, any details you know about one of the companies, such as their location.

Pet parade

Animals have always been a part of the Queensland family. From our canine friends to the more exotic variety, see how our pets shared our history all over the State.

Start here: Pet parade
Ideas for tags: pet, native animals, goat riding, wagon, foal


Before they were school aged, many Queensland children went to kindergarten or spent time in the care of nannies. By the looks of these photos, they enjoyed themselves! See how many young ones of our recent past spent their days in childcare.

Start here: Childcare
Ideas for tags: kindergarten, crèche, Paddington, sandpit, nursery

Beautiful beaches

We're celebrating summer by sharing this album of beautiful beaches in Queensland. Help us add detail and tag the elements and whereabouts of each photograph.

Start here: Beautiful Beaches
Difficulty: Beginner

George Jackman Photographs

George Jackman was the Gold Coast correspondent for the Courier Mail from 1920 -1945. He was a superb photographer who captured many iconic moments of the time. Enjoy looking through his collection and add tags or comments to memories of the Gold Coast.

Start here: George Jackman
Difficulty: Easy

Afghan Camel Drivers in Queensland

European exploration and settlement of inland Australia depended heavily on the expertise of Muslim cameleers from Afghanistan and British India. During the late 19th century their network of transport routes opened up the arid interior, and they were often seen working through the interior parts of Queensland. The women in the Queensland outback looked forward to a visit from the Afghan cameleers and hawkers. They brought news, haberdashery and household items.
Ideas for tags: cameleers, Afghan, turban, harness.
Start here: Afghan Camel drivers in Queensland

Australian South Sea Islanders

Australian South Sea Islanders have a special place in Queensland's cultural diversity and history. They are the descendants of South Sea Islanders brought to Queensland from 1863 to 1904 from 80 Melanesian islands to work the state's cotton and sugar plantations. Recently digitised Australian South Sea Islander historical photographs need more detail and tags added. We’ve put 40 on Flickr to get you started.

Ideas for tags: sugar plantation, traditional dress, farm worker, indentured, deportation. Words describing people, places and lifestyles are often used as tags. For example, if you recognise someone, you could tag their name, or if the photo is of a place such as plantation, an island or boat, you could use those names as tags. Games or other daily activities depicted in the photographs would also be great tags.
Terminology: It can be  uncomfortable to see words used to identify groups of people in a way that is unacceptable to us today.  However, in order to search historical documents, we often need to use words and phrases that were commonly used in the past to describe indentured labourers from the South Sea Islands.  We often see terms  “coloured labour”, “kanaka”, “blackbirding” and “black labour”.  We also see the phrases “children labourers” and  “orphan labourers”.  The preferred term at State Library is “Australian South Sea Islanders”
Start here: Australian South Sea Islanders (set 1) , Australian South Sea Islanders (set 2) Difficulty: Beginner

To mark the contribution of Australian South Sea Islanders to Queensland over the past 150 years, State Library of Queensland, Queensland Museum and Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art presented a range of exhibitions, projects and events from June to November 2013.