Discovering the world’s largest kangaroo- Part 1: In the field

By Rochelle Lawrence, Palaeontological Research Assistant, and Scott Hocknull, Senior Curator, Geosciences, Queensland Museum  As the weather begins to cool, the ‘dig’ season starts for us (palaeontologists) as we venture off along the coast and into the outback heart of Queensland. Over the last ten years we have been investigating a series of fossil sites at South Walker Creek located near the town of Nebo, … Continue reading Discovering the world’s largest kangaroo- Part 1: In the field

What are megafauna?

By Rochelle Lawrence, Palaeontological Research Assistant, and Scott Hocknull, Senior Curator, Geosciences, Queensland Museum. Megafauna are giant animals usually weighing over 44 kilograms (kg). Most megafauna are now extinct (no longer exist) and were closely related to living species of animals we see today. You have probably heard of the more commonly known megafauna species, like the saber-toothed cat and woolly mammoth from North America. … Continue reading What are megafauna?

Electric Vehicles: Technology recharged

Electric vehicles (EVs) are gradually becoming visible on Queensland roads. The pioneer of this cutting-edge electric technology was a plain 1980s parcels van.

The converted Bedford van carried the digital clock showing Robert de Castella’s time in the 1982 Commonwealth Games marathon in Brisbane. For a short time the van was perhaps the most watched vehicle in the world. The Lucas Bedford van was virtually silent and produced no exhaust fumes, making it perfect for use in sporting competitions like the marathon and 30 km walk. It has a range of 100 km and a top speed of 80 kph.

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19th century Australia: grog and salad dressing?

Written by Nick Hadnutt , Curator, Archaeology.

Many of the artefacts recovered from historical archaeology sites in Australia are essentially the same types of material. Any researcher investigating these sites will expect to handle a range of material including various metal fragments, spent munitions, lost buttons, broken slate pencil tips, fragments of tools, bits of bridles and horse gear, lost coins and tokens, pieces of fabric, discarded leather material and ceramics. Amongst the most common objects are those made of glass: either whole vessels or as fragments. In fact, so much glass material is recovered from sites, it could be easy to assume 19th century Australians lived on a diet of alcohol and salad dressing, simply from the kinds of bottles we find most often.
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Meaning in Maps

Written by Dr Geraldine Mate, Principal Curator, Industry, History and Technology.

It’s a nerdy boast, I know, but I love maps! Colourful touristy maps, contour maps, historic maps with wheat, sugar and gold country blithely shaded out, hand-drawn maps with names of people as important as names of places, and even the busy cadastral maps – dimensioned and officially (officiously?) denoting gazetted reserves, roadways, property boundaries and survey points. They all somehow convey a little bit about the landscape they depict. So what do maps have to do with archaeology?
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From Paris with love

Written by Senior Curator of Cultural Environments,  Mark Clayton.

Can you ever imagine sending an email, knowing that there was every reasonable chance it might never reach its destination? After a day or so frustration would morph into annoyance, but after four months of this we’d probably be gripped with anxiety, if not fear. Scaling this scenario up, to a population of 600,000, perhaps affords us some insight to how metropolitan Parisians must have felt 145 years ago when their city was surrounded and put to siege by Prussian armies. For four months, beginning mid-September 1870, all usual communications were severed leaving the city’s entire population isolated from the rest of the world.
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Quinn’s Post: Gallipoli

Written by Mark Clayton, Senior Curator, Social History, Queensland Museum.

This hand-drawn map of Quinn’s Post, Gallipoli, documents – in great detail – the disposition of Australian forces including the location of mines, trenches, tunnels, and winzes. The right-hand table also chronicles the forty-seven mine explosions that occurred there during the eight month campaign.
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Women in Science, Queensland Museum

Happy International Women’s Day! In the lead up to 8 March 2015,  Queensland Science have been busy celebrating International Women’s Day by shining the spotlight on women in science on their Facebook & Twitter pages and via the #womeninscience & #makeithappen hashtags. During the week a number of Queensland Museum scientists put their hand up to provide an insight into what inspired them to pursue a career in science and offer a few words of encouragement for all the young women and girls out there enthusiastic about science.
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A day in the sun

By Queensland Museum Curator of Queensland stories, Tracy Ryan.

Queensland Museum’s social history collection receives a lot of donation offers each year, and sadly many of them are refused for various reasons, one of which is a lack of provenance. But when we were approached last year with the offer of a bicycle called the Solar Tandem, we got pretty excited. Here was an object that ticked all our boxes.
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Meet the Curator – David Parkhill

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Photography by Michelle Legg

Queensland Museum Assistant Collection Manager David Parkhill writes about his personal journey, from being captivated by Museums as a young boy growing up in England to arriving in Australia to peruse a livelihood as a jackaroo to finally finding his calling… a journey he describes as “a long strange trip”.
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Anniversary of when QANTAS took flight

The Queensland Museum is calling on the public to become involved in preserving the stories within the State Collection. Through the Become a Part of Queensland’s DNA Campaign, people have the opportunity to link their name to an item from the Collection and in essence preserve that story. Queensland Museum, Senior Curator, Mark Clayton has written about his favourite item, an Airmail Bag. The notion of … Continue reading Anniversary of when QANTAS took flight

Meet the Museum Teams of Tomorrow – Everyday Einstein student challenge

By Maryanne Venables

On Saturday 23 August, National Science Week may have been winding down, but here at Queensland Museum, we were cranking up!

Twenty one students from years 7-9 participated in a workshop called the Make your Museum student challenge. This (mutual) learning experience was generated in partnership with Queensland Academies as part of their Young Scholars program.
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Out of the Box Festival : We chat to the jellyfish from Songs of the Sonar

The Out of the Box Festival is returning to Brisbane tomorrow and bringing along 8 days of fun workshops, musical performances & lively concerts for children 8 years and under. This year’s festival is all about the many relationships children have with living creatures, both real and imaginary – an absolute must for your child’s calendar.

The Queensland Museum is thrilled to have hybrid human jellyfish, and mystical sea songstress Deepstaria Enigmatica, join us for 10 days of under the sea activities that feed on mystery, music and fun! She took time out of her busy sea-schedule to invite us into her cavernous underwater realm to discuss Songs of the Sonar, learn about her deep ocean friends and chat about the discovery of her musical talent.
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Museum for teens: Deep Oceans

Written by: Tim Janetzki is a student at Ferny Grove State High School who has taken it upon himself to discover the Queensland Museum and the amazing things within it. Over the coming months Tim will blog about his personal experiences and views on the Museum. His next assignment was discovering Deep Oceans. The unknown is a terrifying thing, to not know what lives in … Continue reading Museum for teens: Deep Oceans