Independence Day

The 24th of August is Ukrainian Independence (such as it is now) Day.

Here is the tryzub – the trident of Ukraine – printed over a Russian stamp during Ukraine’s struggle for independence during the fall of the Russian Empire and the formation of the Soviet Union. Circa 1918.

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The tryzub - the trident of Ukraine - printed over a Russian stamp during Ukraine's struggle for independence during the fall of the Russian Empire and the formation of the Soviet Union. Circa 1918.

105 Years Ago

Ukrainians are photographed harvesting in Separator, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1915.

At this point in time Ukrainians were forced to register as “enemy aliens”, and many were put into concentration camps to perform forced labour during World War One.

Ukrainians are photographed harvesting in Separator, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1915. At this point in time Ukrainians were forced to register as enemy aliens and many were put into concentration camps to perform forced labour

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Ukrainians are photographed harvesting in Separator, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1915. At this point in time Ukrainians were forced to register as enemy aliens and many were put into concentration camps to perform forced labour.

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On this day: Japan Surrenders

The_Far_East-_Singapore,_Malaya_and_Hong_Kong_1939-1945_A30522Indian soldier who'd been kept as a Japanese prisoner of war in Hong Kong, being cared for by British nurses aboard the hosp

Imperial Japan surrendered on the 15th of August, 1945, effectively ending the Second World War (the official surrender came on the 2nd of September).

The moment resulted in the liberation of occupied regions across Asia and the Pacific, where many sex slaves and prisoners of war were kept in appalling conditions.

The photograph shows an emaciated Indian soldier who’d been kept as a prisoner of war in Hong Kong, being cared for by British nurses aboard the hospital ship Oxfordshire.

From the collection of the Imperial War Museum.

On this day: Australians under siege in North Africa

 AustraliansAtTobrukAustralian troops occupy a front line position at Tobruk. Between April and December 1941 the Tobruk garrison, comprising British, Australian and Polish troops, was be

This photograph, dated the 13th of August, 1941 shows Australian troops on the frontline in North Africa in the Second World War.

Some 14 000 Australian troops spent 241 days under attack from combined Nazi and Italian forces in the Siege of Tobruk, Libya. Control of the harbour town was crucial to Allied interests in the region.

The Australians involved became known as the Rats of Tobruk.

P. L. Travers’ 121st Birthday

australian p. l. travers in the role of titania in a production of a midsummer night's dream, c. 1924 state library of new south wales. mary poppins

P. L. Travers in the role of Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, circa 1924.

State Library of New South Wales

Today would have been the 121st birthday of the Australian creator of Mary Poppins, P. L. Travers.

Born Helen Lyndon Goff in Maryborough, Queensland on the 9th of August 1899, she moved to Bowral, New South Wales in 1907.

As an adult she travelled Australia and New Zealand, and later England as an actress, changing her name to Pamela Lyndon Travers.

Travers created Mary Poppins while renting a cottage in Sussex, England in 1933, and the first book was published in 1934.

The eighth and final book in the series was published in 1988.

Travers died, aged ninety-six, in April of 1996.