Reading time: 1 minute
A look at the novel Chickenhawk, Robert Mason’s bestselling account of his service as a chopper pilot in Vietnam–a no-holds-barred autobiography that reveals the war’s shattering legacy in the heart of a returning vet.

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The A to Z of the Royal Navy Captains’ letters project

Reading time: 11 minutes

This is the first of a planned series of blogs charting the progress of the Royal Navy Captains’ letters volunteer project. In it I make reference to letters which use terminology and refer to practices that may cause offence.

This project, scheduled for completion in 2024, involves cataloguing letters written by Royal Navy Captains to the Admiralty during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars (1793-1815). The National Archives holds these letters in 564 boxes in the record series ADM 1, archived by year and the initial letter of Captains’ surnames.

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Why the Romans weren’t quite as clean as you might have thought

Reading time: 5 minutes
Prior to the Romans, Greece was the only part of Europe to have had toilets. But by the peak of the Roman Empire in the 3rd century AD, the Romans had introduced sanitation to much of their domain, stretching across western and southern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Their impressive technologies included large multi-seat public latrines, sewers, clean water in aqueducts, elegant public baths for washing, and laws that required towns to remove waste from the streets. But how effective were these measures in improving the health of the population?

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Military History


Traitors to King and Country: Inside the British Free Corps, Hitler’s British Legion

Reading time: 11 minutes From the moment it took power, the Nazis ruled over a German state possessed of two armies. One was the inheritor of the imperial lineage of the First World War, and the second was the Waffen-SS, which grew from a tiny band of Hitler’s most hardened antisemites to a force of nearly a million men from over two dozen nations before its demise.

Political and Economic History


What Australia’s convict past reveals about women, men, marriage and work

Reading time: 5 minutes It is not the presence of convicts that matters, but the drastic distortion in the ratio of men to women that came with it. Convict men outnumbered convict women by roughly six to one. These numbers were even more skewed at the start of settlement. Convicts were joined by free migrants, especially in the second half of the 19th century, whose numbers also skewed heavily male. The ratio of men to women was consistently skewed in favour of males in Australia until the start of the first world war.

Social and Cultural History



Reading time: 9 minutes In the pantheon of Western classical music an esteemed list of names has captured the admiration and attention of the public for centuries. From the Baroque masters of Bach and Handel, the classical giants of Beethoven and Haydn, and the romantic poets of Chopin and Liszt, much of society’s collective fascination with these composers has extended far beyond just their musical creations. Who were they and how did they write such exquisite melodies? In attempting to learn more about the lives of these men who continue to move so many around the world, personal portraits emerge of seemingly ordinary beings. An ordinariness that vanished when pen was put to paper, and a musical sublimeness was born.

History Audiobooks

A Voyage Towards the South Pole and Round the World – Audiobook

On his first journey Cook mapped the east coast of Australia, on his second the British Admiralty sent him into the vast Southern Ocean. Equipped with one of the first accurate chronometers, Cook pushed his small vessel not merely into the Roaring Forties or the Furious Fifties but become the first explorer to penetrate the Antarctic Circle, reaching an incredible Latitude 71 degrees South, just failing to discover Antarctica.

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History Guild would like to acknowledge the Boonwurrung people, the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are based, and pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging.