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Memories from a Soldier Settlement

At the close of the First World War, Australia began an ambitious and controversial soldier settlement scheme, allocating small parcels of potential farming land to returned soldiers. 33,000 acres were set aside in Red Cliffs, and in 1920, the returnees started clearing the Mallee Scrub, making Red Cliffs the largest Irrigated Soldiers' Settlement in Australia.

The Red Cliffs Military Museum, part of the Red Cliffs-Irymple RSL Sub-Branch, began around 1995, when a small billiard room was used to store wartime artefacts donated by local families. By 1997 the collection had grown so much that the museum developed and started opening to the public.

The collection continues to grow and holds artefacts from the Boer War, WW1, WW2, Vietnam and East Timor, and includes diaries, albums, arms, documents and uniforms, scale models and trench art.

A range of these artefacts, and interviews with soldiers and their families, telling of life in and between the First and Second World Wars, are presented here.

For more digital stories about Victoria’s wartime history see Victorian Veterans Virtual Museum and In Our Words: Veterans' Digital Stories.

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