Australia Day

Increasingly controversial as it is, tomorrow is Australia Day, marking 231 years since the British First Fleet arrived in New South Wales.

Here’s a publication from 1901, announcing the “new” Australian flag.

Source

The edition of the Review of Reviews; front cover signed by Egbert Nuttall, after the winning designers of the 1901 Federal Flag design competition were announced. Australian flag 1901

 

And things aren’t going to be very comfortable for the official, mostly outdoor events here in Canberra (the capital city), that run over the 25th-26th!

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On this day…

This image is of a reenactment of the First Fleet of British ships arriving in Sydney Harbour in 1788.

Taken on Australia Day (26th January), this was Australia’s bicentenary in 1988.

first-fleet-reenactment-for-australias-bicentenary-australia-day-26th-january-1988-sydney-harbour

The First Fleet

A 1938 image depicting the First Fleet arriving in Australia on the 26th of January, 1788. This was the beginning of European colonisation of the continent, and the 26th is now called Australia Day.

From the collection of the National Library of Australia in Canberra.

Reproduction of John Allcot (1888–1973), The First Fleet in Sydney Cove, January 27, 1788, from The Sydney Mail, January 26, 1938. National Library of Australia, Canberra.

On this day: the First Fleet in 1788

View_of_Botany_Bayengraving of the First Fleet in Botany Bay at voyage's end in 1788

On the 20th of January, 1788, the main body of the First Fleet arrived in Botany Bay, modern-day Australia.

The First Fleet, consisting of eleven ships of convicts, marines and seamen, had left England in 1787.

Botany Bay was deemed unsuitable for a colony, with concerns about the lack of fresh water and the swampy land, and the fleet moved further north, to Port Jackson. The fleet’s arrival in the second port is marked by Australia Day on the 26th of January.

Emigration poster c. 1948: ‘Australia, land of tomorrow’

I think this poster is a tad disgustingly optimistic (and misleading!). As the product of refugees from the Soviet Union who arrived in the country the year after this poster is supposed to have been produced, I know for a fact Australia hardly welcomed their immigrants with open arms! The term “New Australian” is still thrown about by Anglo-Saxon people of a certain age, and it’s not a compliment. My mother was born here, and they even call her that!

Australian immigrantion poster 1948