Museums & Galleries Queensland (M&G QLD) proudly announced the Winners of the 2015 Gallery and Museum Achievement Awards (GAMAA) at a gala event hosted by The University of Queensland Art Museum on Thursday 19 November 2015. This year’s award winners were presented with an exquisite trophy specially created for the event by Queensland artist Madeleine Brown.
The North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum, was announced the Winner for its outstanding achievement in the category of ‘Engagement: Organisations with Paid Staff’ for its project Stradbroke 100: Remembering North Stradbroke Islanders Overseas and at Home During the First World War. In awarding the Museum the Winner in this category, the judges acknowledged the many achievements of this remarkable research project.
The project began with the Honour Board in the Dunwich Hall, which was donated to the community in 1917 by Tom Welsby. It lists thirteen names of men who had served overseas in World War One with several blank spaces.
Intrigued by these spaces, the North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum undertook an ambitious research project. This was a major exercise in community engagement, connecting with family members of the service personnel, and with families with links back several generations, to those living on the Island in 1914 to 1918. Eventually, twenty-two men were identified and researched, fourteen of whom were Aboriginal. The personal stories of all the men, their recruitment, war service and resettlement was documented, and the Museum used oral histories to capture family memories and experiences of the service personnel, and how life was on the Island 100 years ago.