Banner Image
Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Sydney TAFE buildings historical photo

TAFE NSW Heritage Collection: Anzac Centenary 2014-2018

Labourers, Luminaries & Lieutenants: Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I

Sydney Technical College was at the centre of society and training in the period of The Great War. It contributed staff, students and skills to the war effort. From the outbreak of the war, August 1914, staff and students immediately enlisted and served with valour and many paid the ultimate sacrifice. Sydney TAFE remembers them by acknowledging the labourers, luminaries and lieutenants who served their country; as seen throughout our exhibition of artefacts, artworks and archives of the Sydney TAFE Heritage Collection.

To commemorate the centenary of the Gallipoli landing, TAFE NSW hosted the exhibition - Labourers, Luminaries & Lieutenants: Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I which was held at The Muse, Ultimo College from 20 April to 1 May 2015.

Using the collections of the TAFE NSW Heritage Collection, National Archives of Australia, Australian War Memorial, Commonwealth War Graves Commission and the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, the contents on this page are highlights from the Exhibition.

Scroll down and select a theme

Introduction to the Exhibition

This resource contains the Introduction panel as shown in the exhibition: Labourers, Luminaries and Lieutenants Sydney TAFE remembers World War I. It covers a brief history of Australia's involvement in the World War I campaign, acknowledgements and names of Exhibition Committee members.

Names of Soldiers

Geoffrey Lewis Hargrave

This exhibition honours the memories of the soldiers who served in World War I. Their extraordinary stories make compelling reading and have been told through this past exhibition and now online.


Left: Portrait of Geoffrey Lewis Hargrave (image courtesy: Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences P2903-1/17)

ABBOTT, Frederick

BARBER, William Wilfred


Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Soldiers: A-C

ESDAILE, Sydney George

FRY, Dene Bennett

Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Soldiers D-F

HARGRAVE, Geoffrey Lewis

HUNT, Sinclair Edward

IDRIESS, Ion Llewellyn

KING, William Lyttle


Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Soldiers G-K


LOCKLEY, Alexander Hamilton

McNIVEN, Ronald James

Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Soldiers L-N

OGG, William

SAWTELL, Sydney Clyde

SAXBY, Kenneth Knowlten

SAXBY, Eric John

TUXWORTH, Frank Vincent

Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Soldiers O-T

Women in the First World War

A portion of the exhibition has been devoted to examining the theme of women - those who stayed on the home front and contributed to the war effort, like Miss Mary Ellen Roberts (pictured), and women who went overseas and served their country, such as the Morehead sisters. These women have a connection to Sydney Technical College.

Sydney TAFE remembers World War I - Women

Left:  Portrait of Miss M.E. Roberts, TA1313b

Department of Women's Handicrafts Sydney Technical College c1909

Ruby Melville was a student at Sydney Technical College before and during World War I. Read about Ruby's life story and other women featured in the exhibition.

Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Women

Above: Dressmaking Class, Department of Women's Handicraft, Sydney Technical College, c1909

Group portrait with Ada Morehead (nurse) from J00660 Australian War Memorial

Trained as nurses, two sisters Ada and Clara Morehead enlist in the Australian Army Nursing Service at different times during World War I. Read about their stories as featured in the exhibition.

Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Women

Above: Group portrait - Sister Ada Morehead is pictured third from left, from the Australian War Memorial collection J00660


Department of women's handicraft STC

Miss Mary Ellen Roberts was a teacher in dressmaking and then Lecturer-in-Charge of the Women's Handicraft Department at Sydney Technical College from 1900 till her death in 1924.

Read about her contributions to the war effort and vocational training and education of women.

Sydney TAFE Remembers World War I - Women

Above: Formal group portrait -staff of the Department of Women's Handicraft, Miss M.E. Roberts third from left, Sydney Technical College, c1909

Sydney Technical College Helps the War Effort

Sydney Technical College contributed to the war effort both on the ground and in the air. It fostered links with industries, produced footwear for the military and trained pilots at Richmond. The war also involved Sydney Technical College in a new form of instruction - the training of returned service personnel.



The newspaper clipping 'The prophecies of Colonel Harrison', published in 1915, was recently discovered inside the door of a late 19th century large wooden cabinet belonging to the former Technological Museum building, now called The Muse (Building C). The door was removed from its hinges and put on display for the exhibition. More newspaper clippings were found, but this one attracted attention because it predicted the end of the war in December 1915.

Anzac Day Observance 2015

A special Anzac Day Observance was conducted at the War Memorial, Ultimo TAFE College on 22 April 2015. Invited dignitaries and guests at the ceremony included the Honourable John Barilaro MP, former Managing Director of TAFE NSW Ms Pam Christie, former Sydney TAFE Director, Mr David Riordan and descendents of the soldiers featured in the exhibition. The commemorative address was given by Mr Ken Stevenson, former Head of Mathematics, Sydney Technical College and Secretary/Treasurer, Teachers’ RSL Sub-Branch RSL NSW .

Anzac Day Observance ceremony 22 April 2015 Ultimo TAFE College


These videos and interactive timeline were featured in the exhibition Labourers, Luminaries & Lieutenants: Sydney TAFE remembers World War I held at TAFE NSW Ultimo College.

Frank Hurley photograph

Timeline: Australia in the First World War, 1914-1918

Courtesy of the Australian War Memorial


The TAFE NSW Heritage Collection holds a framed original poster called the Military Service Act 1916 that was on display in the exhibition. Learn about the Military Service Act 1916, why this poster was on College grounds and the issue of conscription in Australia during World War I.


Using the theme of commemorating the Anzac Centenary, the following artists exhibited their artwork:

  • Adele Bishop - The Trousseau - 2015 - Photographic paper - Artist statement included
  • Adele Bishop - Untitled - 2015 - Photographic paper
  • Jadden Bruhn - Sunday in Canberra - 2015 - Photographic paper - Artist statement included
  • Jadden Bruhn - Midnight in Hyde Park - 2015 - Photographic paper - Artist statement included
  • Rosalie Duligal - Various - Watercolour and oil on canvas
  • Sue McArthur - Tomb of the Unknown Soldier - 2015 - Photographic paper
  • Anna Ryland - Three Generations of Service - 2015 - Acrylic on canvas - Artist statement included
  • Wendy Sharpe - East Timorese with Green Light - 2000 - Gouache and pastel - Artist CV (2015) included


Contact Ultimo Library for more details.