Soldiers disembarking at Port Melbourne, 1919

Photograph showing soldiers disembarking from a troopship at Port Melbourne after returning from overseas, 1919

Soldiers disembarking from a troopship at Port Melbourne after returning from overseas, 1919

Bringing Australian troops home after the Armistice was signed was an enormous undertaking – nearly 200,000 soldiers needed to be repatriated. Worldwide shipping shortages meant most soldiers had to wait weeks and sometimes months for a sea passage. Vocational schemes in British factories, workshops and farms were set up to keep the waiting troops occupied and cheerful.

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