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A Nation Divided: the Great War and Conscription

Contact A Nation Divided: the Great War and Conscription

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The debate over conscription during the darkest years of the Great War has been described by some historians as the most bitter, divisive and violent ever to consume the nation. From 1916-1917 thousands of impassioned speeches were made, endless newspaper columns written, mass meetings and huge rallies were held throughout Australia. As families, communities and organisations divided in bitter recrimination, it seemed as if the soul of the grieving nation would tear itself apart.

This exhibition at the Old Treasury Building tells the story of this extraordinary period in our history. It is a tale of political intrigue, industrial turmoil, civil unrest and a lurid propaganda war. But it is also a story of passionate idealists, who faced down government repression in pursuit of their beliefs. In the end, it is the story of the triumph of democracy amidst the most testing circumstances ever experienced in Australia.

This exhibition is closed on Saturdays.

Supported by the Victorian Government as part of the Anzac Centenary, 2014-2018.

Event Dates

  • Friday 2nd September
  • Sunday 4th September
  • Monday 5th September
  • Tuesday 6th September
  • Wednesday 7th September
  • Thursday 8th September
  • Friday 9th September
  • Sunday 11th September
  • Monday 12th September
  • Tuesday 13th September
  • Wednesday 14th September
  • Thursday 15th September
  • Friday 16th September
  • Sunday 18th September
  • Monday 19th September
  • Tuesday 20th September
  • Wednesday 21st September
  • Thursday 22nd September
  • Sunday 25th September
  • Monday 26th September
  • Tuesday 27th September
  • Wednesday 28th September
  • Thursday 29th September
  • Friday 30th September
  • Sunday 2nd October
  • Monday 3rd October
  • Tuesday 4th October
  • Wednesday 5th October
  • Thursday 6th October
  • Friday 7th October
  • Sunday 9th October
  • Monday 10th October
  • Tuesday 11th October
  • Wednesday 12th October
  • Thursday 13th October
  • Friday 14th October
  • Sunday 16th October
  • Monday 17th October
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  • Friday 21st October
  • Sunday 23rd October
  • Monday 24th October
  • Tuesday 25th October
  • Wednesday 26th October
  • Thursday 27th October
  • Friday 28th October
  • Sunday 30th October
  • Monday 31st October
  • Wednesday 2nd November
  • Thursday 3rd November
  • Friday 4th November
  • Sunday 6th November
  • Monday 7th November
  • Tuesday 8th November
  • Wednesday 9th November
  • Thursday 10th November
  • Friday 11th November
  • Sunday 13th November
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  • Tuesday 15th November
  • Wednesday 16th November
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  • Friday 18th November
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  • Thursday 24th November
  • Friday 25th November
  • Sunday 27th November
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  • Wednesday 30th November
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  • Monday 26th December
  • Tuesday 27th December
  • Wednesday 28th December
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