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Women in World War 1: Women in World War 1

9 Mandatory History

Resources in Oliver

Here are some books that you may find useful during your studies.  Search the Bennies catalogue Oliver for more, or browse the Non-fiction collection NFS.

Dictionary of Sydney

Women played prominent roles in the anti-war, anti-conscription and peace movements that existed independently but sometimes overlapped between 1914 and 1918.

Australian Government- Women in Action

For centuries women have been involved in every kind of war and conflict imaginable, especially as nurses. Australian nurses have dealt face-to-face with war - the sick, the wounded and the dead. They have served in Australia, in war zones across the world and on hospital ships and transports.

Museum of Victoria Collections

Early in World War I local women's groups in Australia began working to provide provide tobacco, cakes, puddings, condensed milk, sugar, biscuits, newspapers and other 'luxury' items to supplement the Australian soldier's army rations

Kitty's War- Podcast

Kitty's War, an award winning book by La Trobe historian Dr Janet Butler, tells the story of a Victorian nurse on the front line. During World War I the only Australian women allowed to serve overseas were nurses (and masseurs). In Kitty's War, we share in the journey of Kit McNaughton, who joined the 3,000 nurses working overseas in the Australian Army Nursing Service.


They laboured in the factories and enlisted in the services, often serving overseas. They made a significant contribution to the war effort, and their lives were changed and would never be the same - they thought. While the horrors of war and the loss of loved ones are remembered, many working women also recall this as a period of unparalleled freedom and camaraderie. And yet when the war ended, career expectations and hopes were discouraged. The jobs they had done so well were given back to the men, while they and other women were strongly encouraged to return to the traditional roles of mother and wife. 

Podcast- Australian nurses in World War 1

Dr Janet Butler (History, La Trobe University) talks about the Australian women who went to the frontlines in World War I and supported their men in their time of need.


The Australian War Memorial

State Library NSW

Women were able to serve in the Australian army as nurses and other medical workers, but only if they were already trained. They served in places such as Egypt, Lemnos, England, France, Belgium, Greece, Palestine and India. About 2139 nurses served overseas between 1914 and 1919, while many worked in military hospitals in Australia. Seven women received the Military Medal during the war.

Women at War (DVA) PDF

World War 1 saw the commitment of large numbers of women employed as nurses and other medical workers. They served in many different places, and were engaged in many different types of nursing. What can we learn about these women’s experiences?



Department of Veterans Affairs

This educational resource provides teachers and students with self-contained classroom ready activities and teaching strategies to investigate the roles and experiences of Australian women during more than a century of wars, conflicts and peace operations.

Australian Women at War

Australian Women in War lists Australian women and women's organisations who participated and assisted in the Boer War, World Wars and subsequent conflicts, with links to biographical, bibliographical and archival information about a small selection of them.