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Listed under:  Society  >  Citizenship  >  Politics  >  Industrial relations  >  Industrial conflict  >  Strikes
StillImage

Non-unionised workers unloading coal during a strike, 1911

This is a black-and-white photograph showing non-unionised workers unloading coal from rail wagons during a strike at the Sunshine Harvester Works in Melbourne in 1911. About 11 men stand in the rail wagons with a pile of what is probably coal sits to their right. The men are dressed casually in shirts and trousers, with ...

StillImage

Letter from prime minister Andrew Fisher to Hugh Victor McKay, 1911

This is a letter from Andrew Fisher, then prime minister of Australia, to Hugh Victor McKay, owner of the Sunshine Harvester Works, dated 24 February 1911. The letter concerns the 1911 strike at the Works over compulsory trade unionism. Fisher writes: 'I should like to meet you in reference to the harvester industrial dispute. ...

StillImage

Handwritten poem by Nathaniel McKay, 'The burial of the hatchet', 1911

This is a handwritten poem by Nathaniel McKay, the older brother of Hugh Victor McKay, which probably refers to the end of a strike that took place at Hugh McKay's Sunshine Harvester Works in Melbourne in 1911. The poem celebrates the end of the strike by describing a mock burial of the hatchet, and concludes with the words ...

Video

Ben Chifley: the aftermath of the miners' strike, 2008

This clip is an excerpt from the documentary 'Infamous victory: Ben Chifley's battle for coal', produced in 2008. This documentary about coal, communism and the Australian Labor prime minister who went to war against his own during the national miners' strike is a Screen Australia Making History production, made in association ...

Moving Image

Strike for better pay and conditions

How can not going to work help to improve pay? Find out the reasons why school teachers went on strike in June 2008. See how strike action can be used by workers to improve their working conditions and pay.

Collection

Trade unions in Australia

This collection of 25 digital curriculum resources traces union activity since the second half of the 19th century. It is organised into eight categories - the eight-hour day campaign; significant union leaders; women and unions; the shearers' strikes of the 1890s; the great General Strike of 1917; unions on the waterfront; ...

Video

November Victory, 1955: 'A fair go for the working people'

This clip from a black-and-white narrated and dramatised 1955 documentary by the Waterside Workers' Federation (WWF) Film Unit, shows the WWF 1954 campaign to unite workers and the public behind their fight against the 1954 amendments to the 1949 Stevedoring Act. Waterside workers' wives support the cause by packing food ...

Video

November Victory, 1955

This black-and-white narrated and dramatised clip from a 1955 documentary made by the Waterside Workers' Federation (WWF) Film Unit recounts the story of the waterside workers' victory in rendering the 1954 amendment to the Stevedoring Act of 1949 unworkable. Scenes show the Bill's signing, the WWF leader Jim Healy speaking, ...

Collection

Aboriginal stockmen and the pastoral industry

This is a collection of ten digital curriculum resources focusing on the contribution of Aboriginal stockmen to the Australian cattle industry, particularly in northern Australia. It is grouped into three categories: working on cattle stations; occasional work as guides; and striking for better pay and conditions. The collection ...

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Bob Hawke at a Canberra 'dismissal' rally, 1975 - asset 1

This is a colour photograph that shows Bob Hawke, then President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) and National President of the Australian Labor Party (ALP), speaking at a rally to protest the dismissal of the Whitlam government by the Governor-General Sir John Kerr. The photograph was taken on the lawns ...

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'The great Mt Dromedary strike', c1898

This is a black-and-white photograph, taken by William Henry Corkhill (1846-1936), of 25 striking miners clustered on the veranda of a Mount Dromedary Gold Mining Company building. They probably constitute a picket line, or a delegation representing other miners. The men all wear hats, heavy trousers, boots and light-coloured ...

Video

'The hungry miles', 1955 - part 1 of 12

This is a clip from a black-and-white Australian dramatised documentary titled 'The hungry miles' that outlines the history of unionism among waterside workers and their attempts to maintain and improve their working conditions in the early 1950s. The film opens with a shot of the Australian coat of arms on old Parliament ...

Video

'The hungry miles', 1955 - part 2 of 12

This is a clip from a black-and-white dramatised Australian documentary titled 'The hungry miles' that outlines the history of unionism among waterside workers and their attempts to maintain and improve their working conditions in the early 1950s. Set to music, with a brief voice-over by Australian actor Leonard Teale, ...

Video

'The hungry miles', 1955 - part 10 of 12

This is a clip from a black-and-white Australian dramatised documentary titled 'The hungry miles' that outlines the history of unionism among waterside workers and their attempts to maintain and improve working conditions in the early 1950s. A cord is pulled and a whistle emits steam. Two men look up from inside a bag-filled ...

Video

How the West Was Lost, 1987: Four dollars a fortnight

This clip shows an interview with Sam Coppin, one of the Indigenous stockmen who, in 1946, went on strike for better conditions. Coppin describes working conditions before the strike. Archival colour footage of Indigenous workers handling stock is shown, followed by Crow Yougarla, another stockman, describing the strike ...

Video

Friends and Enemies, 1987: Unity is strength

This clip shows Queensland Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen at a press interview, telling workers not to be intimidated by their union during a strike at the South East Queensland Electricity Board (SEQEB). This is followed by footage of unionists handing out leaflets, a band playing and shots of supporters in a stadium applauding ...

Video

For Love or Money, 1983: First women's union

This clip shows etchings, newspaper headlines and archival photographs of individuals and women in factories that illustrate the history of women's employment in late-19th-century Australia. The visuals are accompanied by a voice-over narration, readings of original texts and an avant-garde soundtrack. All these elements, ...

Video

Blood Brothers - From Little Things Big Things Grow, 1993: Wave Hill walkout

This clip shows singer-songwriters Kev Carmody and Paul Kelly discussing the background to their song 'From little things big things grow', which tells the story of the Wave Hill walkout. The clip includes footage of Kelly performing the song, black-and-white television footage of the striking stockmen and their families, ...

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'Strike', 1917

This is an oil painting on paper by Australian artist Grace Cossington Smith of a speaker haranguing a group of miners. They are standing on a road leading upwards to two small buildings and two tall chimneys. While there are fields on either side of the road, the image is dominated by the speaker and his audience. The ...

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Gurindji strikers after the Wave Hill walk-off, 1966

This is a black-and-white photograph of a group of men and children at a camp in the mostly dry bed of the Victoria River in the Northern Territory. It was taken a few weeks after the men walked off the Wave Hill cattle station in a protest over discrimination. The man on the left-hand side who is facing the group and not ...