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Interpreting the Great Strike of 1917

Gathering of 100,000 men and women in The Domain on a Saturday (Sydney Mail, 15 August 1917, p. 22. Courtesy NLA)
See event description for details on how to connect.

Wednesday 25 August from 1pm to 2pm

The Great Strike of 1917 erupted on the NSW railways and tramways in August 1917 in response to a new way of monitoring worker productivity. The strike officially lasted just over 6 weeks, the consequences lingered for decades.

The Great Strike began on 2 August when employees at Eveleigh railway workshops and the Randwick tramsheds walked off the job to protest the new working conditions imposed during wartime.

In July-August 2017, the City of Sydney and Carriageworks presented an exhibition to mark this centenary. ‘1917: The Great Strike’ was a commemorative show featuring large-scale images, moving footage, oral history excerpts and commissioned artworks depicting this important moment in Australian history.

Laila will consider how complex labour and economic histories can be interpreted and presented, using a range of sources and art forms.

Laila Ellmoos

Laila Ellmoos is a professional historian who is passionate about communicating history through exhibitions, talks and the written word. She is a historian at the City of Sydney, and a long-standing member of the Professional Historians Association of NSW & ACT.

Other events in this series:

The Great Strike of 1917 on film, Wednesday 1 September, 1pm–2pm

Remembering and forgetting the Great Strike of 1917, Wednesday 8 September, 12-1pm

Contact event organiser

City of Sydney



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