Due to the sheer size of our collection, only a fraction of the Australian National Maritime Museum’s objects can be on display at any one time. 

Don't let our lack of physical space get in the way of making new discoveries. You can explore a rich and diverse collection of artefacts online ranging from rocket boats to gold buttons, and discover a wealth of remarkable stories.

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Colonial Wallpapers - Pacific Encounters

 

Based on the conventions and elements of early European sea charts, the painting 'Colonial Wallpapers - Pacific Encounters' incorporates a central compass rose, rumb lines and wind gods in a reconstruction of the Pacific.

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From the collection

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Illustrated log of the whaling barque TERROR

Illustrated log of the Terror

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HMT Queen Mary assisted by a tug

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Hobart Town 1856

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Arch in the Sky

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Emeret Nar: ghost net canoe

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The Charlotte Medal

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Operation: Torpedo

20 Feb 2015

Working as a registrar at the museum often requires one to think outside the box, and today was no different. Today’s task was to organise the return of a 1200 kg dummy torpedo class 21″ MK9 to the Naval Heritage Collection – simple, right?

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You have to be in it to win it – trophies from the collection

03 Feb 2015

I have never won one and at my age I do feel that the chances of me ever winning one are fast slipping way. In my mind I know exactly where I would put it – front and centre of the room so no one could miss it. I would casually and modestly dismiss it and then proceed to tell the winning tale behind it. Ah, yes, a trophy.

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A pilot steamer for the collection

07 Jan 2015

In 2014 the museum was very fortunate to receive a bequest of a model of the pilot steamer Captain Cook III made by David Radford. The pilot ship was constructed at Mort’s Dock in Balmain and was in service from 1939 until 1959, providing a valuable service to both cargo and passenger vessels.

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The last performance

05 Jan 2015

The museum has an extensive collection of broadsheet ballads covering 100 years and every topic that our modern barrage of social media would also relish: death, drama, shaky morals, heroism, political activism, nationalism, murder, the royals, and the occasional happy ending love story.

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Tidings at sea

24 Dec 2014

Whether by choice or by obligation, spending the festive season on the water is part of many people’s lives. From early journeys when Christmas was celebrated by a devout few, to modern times when Christmas is widely celebrated in so many different ways, thinking of the shores of home seems part of every Christmas spent at sea.

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A dog's life at sea

23 Oct 2014

We love them. Their loyalty, good humour and appreciation for simple pleasures—dogs are quite simply the ultimate companion. And for hundreds of years, sea farers have also thought so. Other pets such as monkeys, cats, birds and even goats may have their place, but dogs and boats are truly a match made in maritime heaven.

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Who said sand paper was dull?

21 Oct 2014

In 2012 the museum acquired a vast collection of negatives of Australian commercial photographer Gervais Purcell (1919-1999). Purcell worked for a variety of clients such as David Jones, P&O, Ansett Australia, Jantzen and many others.

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The ‘triumphant procession’ of the ANMEF

18 Aug 2014

On this day, 100 years ago, a contingent of the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force (ANMEF) marched through Sydney for final embarkation. Fourteen days after Britain declared war on Germany, the ANMEF contingent made their way through streets flooded with tens of thousands of well-wishers.

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After 82 years, still cruising the Southern Oceans

05 Aug 2014

Going through the museum’s archives I came across an old photo album featuring a yacht and two men photographed during the 1930s – nothing unexpected for a maritime museum’s collection. Little did I know that I would fall in love with the boat’s story.

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