View wartime photos - thanks to the Australian War Memorial

We are pleased to share a selection of photographs from the Australian War Memorial collection. Below you will discover a small sample of the thousands of military images available on the Australian War Memorial website. You can view the full collection on the Australian War Memorial website.

Search these captivating images from various wars and conflicts around the world. View images of soldiers in action and witness the camaraderie that occurred between them. Through the weight of their responsibilities and burden of their load they still managed to smile. Despite their often bleak circumstances many of the photos show their young smiling faces full of hope.

Portrait of 1144 Private L.J. Langdon, 11th Battalion, killed in action 26-04-1915.
Studio portrait of 926 Private John Buchanan Young, 34th Battalion of Weston, NSW. Prior to enlistment, Pte Young served for one and a half years in the 14th Battalion, Citizens Military Forces (CMF) before enlisting on 22 January 1916, aged 19 years. He embarked from Sydney with the 34th Battalion on HMAT Hororata (A20) on 2 May 1916, and whilst in England, was promoted to Lance Corporal (L Cpl) on 21 August 1916. He proceeded to France on 21 November of the same year. L Cpl Young was reported missing in action on 7 June 1917 near Ploegsteert Wood.
Three unidentified soldiers at their sniping position. A rifle is leaning against the trench wall next to the soldier at right who appears to be spotting for man aiming his rifle over the parapet.
Photo of Clifford Bottomley, 2nd AIF. 25-06-1940.
"Rats of Tobruk", NX36694 Corporal Alexander Robert McHutchison of Northcote, VIC (left) and NX35323 Private Patrick Joseph McKenna of Griffith, NSW, both of the 2/13 Battalion.
When Private (Pte) Joe Horton of Townsville, QLD gets stuck in the mud during landing practice, Pte Kelly Otto of Tara, QLD gives him a helping hand. Dutch New Guinea, 12 April 1944.
Portrait of 2717 Private H.J.M. Manson, 60th Battalion, killed in action 27-04-1918.
Left to right: VX26801 Corporal W. G. Scott; VX42505 Private A. Whyte; VX138135 Corporal A. Kealy; VX56408 Private C. Gill and VX28606 Private H. Proctor. All of the 2/24th Battalion, returned home on the transport vessell Duntroon. No. 1 wharf, Circular Quay, Sydney NSW 07-11-1945.
SX31156 Private L. A. Waller, 2/27th Battalion smiles as he waits his turn to embark on USS Winchester Victory for the voyage home to Australia from Macassar, Celebes 03-02-1946.
Portrait of 1234 Private Frank King, 23rd Battalion, died of wounds 15-10-1915.
Although covered with the mud of battle-practice, these two Aussie boys can still afford to smile about it and consider it all in a day's work. They are Private (Pte) Joe Horton of Townsville, Qld, and Pte Kelly Otto of Tara, Qld. Dutch New Guinea. 12 April 1944.
These Australian men smiling and displaying the Australian flag they are so proud of were amongst 231 prisoners of war (POWs) released and brought into Yokohama in the middle of the night. The lateness of the hour did not stop them from demonstrating their joy at release. The flag was made and sown by hand from pieces of coloured parachutes used to drop supplies to them while still in camp. All these men were members of 8th Division. They were captured in Singapore and Malaya three and a half years earlier. They had been in Naoetsu prison camp ever since. Yokohama, Japan. September 1945.
Trooper F A Dellar, on his mount, a typical New Zealand Trooper with the New Zealand Light Horse. February 1919.
25-Pounder guns of B Troop, 14th Field Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery being pulled through dense jungle in the vicinity of Uberi on the Kokoda Trail, Papua New Guinea. Members of the regiment are being assisted by 2/1 Australian Pioneer Battalion. Identified are; second from right, WX12285 Private George Samuel Gillett 2/1 Pioneer Battalion, (bare chested, looking at camera); fifth from right, N58727 Staff Sergeant James Edward (Jim) Nugent, (first fully visible face on right side of rope wearing hat and smiling); second on the left of the rope, NX141419 Corporal Douglas Alfred Wray, (fully body visible wearing shorts, hat and belt); fourth on the left wearing a hat, shorts and belt NX20046 Sapper Ernie Chester Walker.
Portrait of 101, Private E. Gentle, 25th Battalion who died of wounds on 04-08-1916.
Studio portrait of left to right: 2042 Private Archibald Cyril Barker, 35th Battalion; Private Thomas Barker; and probably 4983 Private Willam Barker, 1st Battalion. Two of the men are brothers while the other man is their cousin. Australia c. 1916.
The unidentified crew of a Royal Marine Artillery 15 inch howitzer, supporting the Australians. Note the writing on the shell 'RMA Peace Germies'. Western Front (Belgium), Ypres Area, October 1917.
An unidentified soldier carrying on his back a wounded member of the Australian Army Medical Corps (AAMC) through a trench during the Third Battle of Ypres in 1917. The injured member of the AAMC has a bandaged right foot.
Portrait of three smiling lads await the hour to go into the battle zone to lay signal wires so that the infantry of 29th/46th Battalion may maintain contact with the command posts. Left to right: Corporal E. Negro of Richmond, Vic; Signalman S. Eastwood of Collingwood, Vic; Sergeant W. Young of North Melbourne, Vic. Papua New Guinea, November 1943.
Unidentified gunners of the Australian Heavy Artillery loading an 8in Howitzer gun.
Lieutenant Walter Edward Back, 4th Battalion, 1st AIF.
Studio portrait of Major General J. W. Parnell, Commandant, Royal Military College, Duntroon from 1914-1920.
An Australian Battery in the Uria Valley covers the Japanese road to Madang. Lance Bombardier J. Kenny of Essendon, Vic, and Sergeant F. McLaughlan of St Kilda, Vic, are cooking on an improvised stove made from shell case boxes and tins during the Upper Ramu Valley advance. Papua New Guinea, 1 November 1943
Portrait of Lieutenant Colonel Arnold Brown DSO OBE MC (twice MID), President of the War Crimes Tribunal. His military record includes service service at Gallipoli and in France during WW1 and the Middle East and the islands during WW2. He was responsible for the administration of the famous "Bulldog Road" in New Guinea. Darwin, NT. 28-02-1946.
Captain O'Sullivan's 'Corner', in the officer's quarters of the 5th Battalion, showing his bed in the corner, a shelf above with two hats and possibly a belt, two pair of boots on the floor at left, clothes at right hanging on the wall, a table with photographs and personal belongings at right and his travelling trunk on the floor.
Australian Victoria Cross winners from World War 1 invited by the Prime Minister of Australia, The Honourable W. M. Hughes, to return home to assist in a recruiting campaign. The photograph was taken as the ship HMAT Medic was berthing. The identified men are, from the left; front row, 506 Sergeant R. R. Inwood, 10th Infantry Battalion; 4061 Sergeant S. R. McDougall, 48th Infantry Battalion; second row not identified; third row, 2060 Lieutenant J. J. Dwyer, 4th Machine Gun Company; 958 Lieutenant L. Keysor, 42nd Infantry Battalion; 1946 Lieutenant W. Ruthven, 22nd Infantry Battalion; back row, 114 Sergeant W. Peeler, 3rd Pioneer Battalion; 4195 Corporal T. J. B. Kenny, 2nd Infantry Battalion; 2902 Sergeant J. W. Whittle, 12th Infantry Battalion; 2389 Corporal J. C. Jensen, 50th Infantry Battalion; 1804 Private J. Carroll, 33rd Infantry Battalion. Port Melbourne, Vic. 1918.
Original Herald caption: "Sergeant R A "Pop" Howes MM (aged 58), 7th Australian Division, in full dress uniform." Sgt. Howes enlisted in the AIF in 1916, serving with the 54th Battalion. He enlisted in the 2nd AIF in May 1940 understating his age by sixteen years. In 1941 he was awarded the Military Medal (MM) for "outstanding gallantry" at Adlum in Syria while serving with the 2/7th Battalion. Discharged in 1942 he enlisted again in 1944, this time understating his age by only fourteen years, and was finally discharged from the Army as a 62 year old corporal posted to the British Commonwealth Occupation Force (BCOF) at Eta Jima in Japan. Watsonia, Vic. 18-04-1944.
Turkish and German officers captured during the operations at Magdhaba. North Africa: Egypt, Frontier, Magdhaba. c 1916.
Personnel on the deck of battlecruiser HMAS Australia (I) engaged in the operation of coaling ship. Note the port 12 inch gun turrett on the right. In the top left a superstructure position for a secondary armament 4 inch gun is closed off by shutters, the muzzle of the weapon protruding aft. Another 4 inch mounting can be seen further forward between the derrick arms of the collier.
Recruits from the boys' training ship HMAS Tingira (ex Sobraon) practising rifle drill during field training. They are armed with Lee Enfield .303 rifles with hooked quiilian bayonets. They are wearing 1901 pattern belts with ammunition pouches mark I. Sydney NSW c.1912.
The ship's company attending morning prayers on board the boys' training ship HMAS Tingira (ex Sobraon), Sydney NSW c.1912.
The cruiser HMAS Adelaide (I) launched by Lady Munro Ferguson, Cockatoo Island dockyard, Sydney NSW 27-07-1918
Rear Admiral Patey presenting a commemorative medal to Sub Lieutenant Turner who instructed the winners of the challenge shield, Largs Drill Hall, Sydney NSW 21-02-1914
The 28cm German railway gun, known as the Amiens gun, on the day of its capture by AIF troops. The words 'captured' and partly obscured 'Australia' has been painted on the mounting. The camouflaged barrel is displayed at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra ACT.
A fatigue party of three unidentified soldiers carrying duckboards along a duckboard pathway. c 1918.
Lieutenant General (Lt Gen) Sir Philip Chetwode General Officer Commanding (GOC) XX (twenty) Corps (foreground), Lt Gen HG Chauvel, (GOC) Desert Mounted Corps and Brigadier General JR Royston, Commanding Officer, (CO) 3rd Australian Light Horse Brigade, conversing. North Africa: Egypt, Frontier, El Arish. January 1917
Barbed wire entanglement in front of the 50th Battalion trenches. A Light Horse patrol found its way there every morning at 3AM. March 1916.
Soldiers, probably 5th Battalion men, sitting on the sand during a foot inspection. Greece: Aegean Islands, Lemnos. 1915.
Australian Light Horsemen, possibly 4th Brigade Headquarters, watching the first stages of the Battle of Rafa. Note the red cross arm bands worn by the two medics and the emu feathers attached to the felt hats of the men in the background. Tripod mounted telescopes can also be seen. North Africa: Egypt, Frontier, Rafa. January 1917.
5th Battalion men constructing trenches with the use of sandbags at 'Thirsty Gully' near Heliopolis. An officer is sitting on sandbags. c 1916
5th Battalion AIF men at a unit outpost in the defensive trenchlines. The soldier is using a tripod mounted telescope, others are lying down and resting (rear). Their rifles are resting on the parapet and pointing towards the enemy lines at right. North Africa: Egypt. c 1916.
Men being dunked into a canvas water tank at a crossing the line ceremony on an unidentified troop transport. c 1916
Three unidentified members of the 9th Australian Light Horse, the soldier on the left is having his hair cut with horse clippers which are being run by a manual air compressor of which the handle is being rapidly turned by the soldier on the right. The latter has the reins of the horse behind him and an unseen one to the right wrapped around his left wrist. Ottoman Empire: Shellal. 17 August 1917.
Major Victor Francis Back, 53rd Battalion, 1ST AIF.
A soldier standing outside 'Factory Corner ', a shelter made from sand bags and other materials. Duck boards are in the foreground as the mud was appalling. It was here the 22nd Battalion had their Headquarters during the operations at Flers. France: Picardie, Somme. 1917.
The 3rd Light Horse Brigade preparing and awaiting orders for the advance on Magdhaba. North Africa: Egypt, Frontier, Magdhaba. c 1916.
A group of unidentified Australian Lighthorsemen digging trenches on the banks of the Wady Ghuzze. Note the emu feather attached to the felt hat of the man in the foreground. Ottoman Empire: Wady Ghuzze. 1916.
No 7 Outpost showing dug outs in the sand, which were constructed by members of 9th Australian Light Horse. North Africa: Egypt, Suez Canal, Serapeum. April 1916.
Following the evacuation from Gallipoli each AIF Battalion was split in two. One half retained the original designation and was reinforced to full strength. The other half became the core of a new battalion. Here the men who remained with the 5th Battalion are cheering and waving their hats as half of the unit march off to become the core of the new 57th Battalion. North Africa: Egypt, Heliopolis. c 1916.
A gun, probably a 9.2 in/31.5 caliber BL Mark III, for use against submarines on the ship 'Briton' bound for France.