Lord Mayors and Wartime Morale
Would you expect a Lord Mayor of Melbourne to issue a pamphlet with a quote from Stalin on its front cover? Or King George VI? Or even both?
During the Second World War Melbourne’s Lord Mayor convened a committee called the Lord Mayor’s Committee for Civil Morale. It issued a series of notes for speakers throughout the city to use as a reference when encouraging the war effort. The notes were printed on lightweight paper, a few points to a serrated page, so they could be torn off and referred to during a speech. By their very nature they were ephemeral and unlikely to survive whole or even in part.
Just one copy of the publication has been previously recorded in an Australian collection - at the National Library of Australia – it is the twelfth issue (30th April 1943) issued while Sir Thomas Sydney Nettlefold was Lord Mayor. It is noted as being incomplete.
The RUSI of Victoria Library has two complete copies of these notes:
No 2 (29th July 1942), with a King George VI quotation on its cover, published during period of office of Sir Frank Beaurepaire (he had been knighted on 11th June). It is Item 17829 in our catalog. Beaurepaire had also issued a press statement saying, “Throughout my term of office as Lord Mayor, I have been concerned, along with many citizens from all walks of life, with the strengthening of civil morale”
The second copy we have, No 8 (14th December 1942) with a quote by Stalin on its cover was issued during Nettlefold’s period (Item 17830 in our catalog). Both are these items are important additions to our collection.