Celebrations and commemorations | State Library of New South Wales

Celebrations and commemorations

From visiting royalty to victorious sporting heroes, drawing a crowd has never been a problem in Sydney. During the past 160 years, commemorations, both joyous and solemn, have been captured through the camera's eye.

In 1918, Hugh Wright, the Mitchell Librarian specified the types of photographs to be collected by the Library: 'celebrations, pageants, festivities, great functions, etc. no matter whether they are political, civic, social or religious'.

Children's Day

Detail from Children's Day, 1932, NSW Government Printer
Film negative    GPO 2/51421

In 1879, a photographic unit was set up within the NSW Government Printing Office. The unit was responsible for producing images for all government reports and documenting the growth of Sydney and the State. Over 250,000 copy negatives from the Government Printer, documenting over 100 years of work, are now held by the State Library of NSW. A selection of these images are highlighted in Sydney Exposed.

 > View a selection of Sydney's commemorations, both joyous and solemn

Bicentenary Fireworks

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Sydney Exposed
Made possible through a partnership with Moran Health Care Group