Brisbane in WW2

In 1942, Brisbane's modest population of 300,000 doubled, as US servicemen flooded the riverside city following the rapid expansion of Japanese forces throughout the Pacific. This sudden expansion marked a period of growth in Brisbane, that would change the face of the city forever.
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Military vehicles crossing the William Jolly Bridge in Brisbane, with views to the suburb of South Brisbane.

Military vehicles crossing the William Jolly Bridge in Brisbane, with views to the suburb of South Brisbane.

Queen Street, during an air raid test alarm, Brisbane, 1942  ...Brisbane could never claim to be a metropolis. One of the biggest problems for out-of-towners, including Australians from other States, was actually finding the city centre...  John Oxley Library, State Library of QLD Neg: 99716

Queen Street, during an air raid test alarm, Brisbane, 1942 ...Brisbane could never claim to be a metropolis. One of the biggest problems for out-of-towners, including Australians from other States, was actually finding the city centre... John Oxley Library, State Library of QLD Neg: 99716

Happy young brides on board a ship bound for their new homes in America, Brisbane, September 1945  Several thousand Australian brides left Brisbane and headed to the United States after the war. Most travelled by sea in groups and were unaccompanied by their husbands.   John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg: 43466

Happy young brides on board a ship bound for their new homes in America, Brisbane, September 1945 Several thousand Australian brides left Brisbane and headed to the United States after the war. Most travelled by sea in groups and were unaccompanied by their husbands. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg: 43466

Young American soldier gets his first tattoo, Brisbane, 1943  It wasn't that local girls... were any more desirable to Americans than the wives or sweethearts back home... "One Yank who'd hooked up with an Australian girl got a letter from his girlfriend asking what have Australian girls got that American girls haven't got? He wrote back saying, 'Nothing - only they've got it here.'" John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg: 64349

Young American soldier gets his first tattoo, Brisbane, 1943 It wasn't that local girls... were any more desirable to Americans than the wives or sweethearts back home... "One Yank who'd hooked up with an Australian girl got a letter from his girlfriend asking what have Australian girls got that American girls haven't got? He wrote back saying, 'Nothing - only they've got it here.'" John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg: 64349

Remains of a Japanese Zero exhibited in an Air Training Corps march through Brisbane streets, 31 July 1943. The march was designed to stimulate the drive for Air Training Corps recruits. 'Remains of a Zero exhibited in yesterday's Air Training Corps march are all that was left of Jap machine shot out of northern skies...' (Information taken from: Sunday truth, 1 August 1943). (Description supplied with photograph)

Remains of a Japanese Zero exhibited in an Air Training Corps march through Brisbane streets, 31 July 1943. The march was designed to stimulate the drive for Air Training Corps recruits. 'Remains of a Zero exhibited in yesterday's Air Training Corps march are all that was left of Jap machine shot out of northern skies...' (Information taken from: Sunday truth, 1 August 1943). (Description supplied with photograph)

American soldiers on a delivery cart in Brisbane, Queensland  "...the trickle of American troops into the city had become a steady flow. Everybody called them 'Yanks', even after it was politely explained that many came from south of the Mason Dixon line." John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg: 105721

American soldiers on a delivery cart in Brisbane, Queensland "...the trickle of American troops into the city had become a steady flow. Everybody called them 'Yanks', even after it was politely explained that many came from south of the Mason Dixon line." John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg: 105721

Members of the US servicemen's boxing team, Brisbane, February 1943  Members of the US boxing team who competed against Australian servicemen at the inter-allied boxing tournament at the Brisbane Stadium on Saturday 27 February 1943. [Sunday Truth, 21 February 1943]   On the night, the Americans finished behind on points 32-24 and lost 9 fights to 5. It was described as a boisterous and raucous night. [Truth newspaper, 28 February 1943] Neg: 102776 John Oxley Library, State Library of QLD

Members of the US servicemen's boxing team, Brisbane, February 1943 Members of the US boxing team who competed against Australian servicemen at the inter-allied boxing tournament at the Brisbane Stadium on Saturday 27 February 1943. [Sunday Truth, 21 February 1943] On the night, the Americans finished behind on points 32-24 and lost 9 fights to 5. It was described as a boisterous and raucous night. [Truth newspaper, 28 February 1943] Neg: 102776 John Oxley Library, State Library of QLD

View of the Victoria Bridge and South Brisbane, ca.1940 - View of the Victoria Bridge over the Brisbane River looking across to South Brisbane. The Cremorne building and various residences are visible along the bank of the river. The 'Plume sign, advertising Plume brand petrol, appears over the entrance to the bridge on the north side.

View of the Victoria Bridge and South Brisbane, ca.1940 - View of the Victoria Bridge over the Brisbane River looking across to South Brisbane. The Cremorne building and various residences are visible along the bank of the river. The 'Plume sign, advertising Plume brand petrol, appears over the entrance to the bridge on the north side.

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