A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca.1948

A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca.1948 is a recently digitised film from the Sylvia Brown Films collection.

Still from A visit to Australia's Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

Still from A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

This colour home movie contains footage of a trip to the Great Barrier Reef and Palm Island and shows extensive scenes of reef life including underwater footage.

Still from A visit to Australia's Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

Still from A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

The last five minutes of the film was taken on Palm Island and features footage of school children, beach scenes, climbing coconut palms, basket making and Aboriginal dancing.

Still from A visit to Australia's Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

Still from A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

Still from A visit to Australia's Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

Still from A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca. 1948, 7432/3. Part of 7432 Sylvia Brown Films . John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland

A visit to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef home movie, ca.1948 can be viewed through our One Search catalogue.

This film is part of the Sylvia Brown Films collection which comprises eighteen reels of film and one audio reel. The films are home movies spanning from the 1930s to the 1980s. The earlier films, shot by J. K. Brown, include movies showing a history of Paxton Farm in Slacks Creek; Townsville and Magnetic Island; and the Great Barrier Reef and Palm Island. There is also home movie footage relating to the Brown family showing suburban scenes and recreational outings. Some of these films relate to the Brown family’s association with Paxton Farm – a communal farm run by members of the Quakers (Society of Friends). The later films show trips around Australia and abroad. The films are mostly 16mm or Super 8 and silent.

27 October is World Day for Audiovisual Heritage, a day to honor audiovisual preservation professionals and institutions who safeguard this heritage for future generations. This year, State Library of Queensland embarked on the Reel Rescue project to save more than 4000 fragile film and videos in our collection with the help of donor support.