This hand coloured photographic postcard demonstrates the enthusiasm to which Sydney greeted the US Navy's Great White Fleet visit in 1908. It depicts a Sydney railway station, possibly Central Station, illuminated with coloured lights. Postcards were the most popular and cheap souvenir available to mark the American fleet's visit.
In December 1907 United States President Theodore Roosevelt sent the US Atlantic Battle Fleet of 16 battleships, all painted white in peacetime colours, on a 14 month goodwill cruise around the world. The voyage came at a time of tense relations between Japan and America and gave the US an opportunity to demonstrate its blue-water naval capabilities as well as strengthen diplomatic ties. The fleet arrived in Australia on 20 August 1908.
For more information on lightshows of the past, see our blog
If reproduced or distributed, this image should be clearly attributed to the collection of the Australian National Maritime Museum; and not be used for any commercial or for-profit purposes without the permission of the museum. For more information see our Flickr Commons Rights Statement
The ANMM undertakes research and accepts public comments that enhance the information we hold about images in our collection. This record has been updated accordingly.
Object number: 00004068
Owner: Australian National Maritime Museum on The Commons
Source: Flickr Commons