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  • Title
    James Brunton Gibb further papers, 1873-ca. 1990
  • Creator
  • Call number
    MLMSS 3446 ADD-ON 2220/Box 1X
    MLMSS 3446 ADD-ON 2220/Boxes 2-3
    MLMSS 3446 ADD-ON 2220/Folder 4X
    POSTERS 1204/1-4
  • Level of description
  • Date

    1873 - ca. 1990
  • Type of material
  • Reference code
  • Issue Copy
    Partly Digitised : 2014
  • Physical Description
    0.95 metres of textual material (2 boxes, 1 outsize box and 1 outsize folder) - manuscript, typescript, clippings, ephemera, printed, photographs
    4 posters

    James Brunton Gibb was born in Sydney on 13th January 1897. He commenced the study of elocution at 8 years of age, and soon after he took part in many of Mr Lawrence Campbell's recitals. He was baptised James Thomas but used his mother's maiden name as a performing artist. In printed material throughout his life he was variously referred to as James Gibb, James Brunton Gibb and James Brunton-Gibb.
    Enlisting in the Australian Imperial Forces in July 1915, the young man sailed from Sydney in R.M.S. Osterley in January 1916, bound for Suez. In March 1916 he was transferred to the 7th Field Ambulance(B) which sailed for Marseilles, then saw active service in the heaviest battles in France and Flanders.
    His diaries provide detailed accounts of his time at war, and reveal a man of great sensitivities. He returned to Australia on the transport ship "Rio Pardo", which sailed from England in May 1919. During the war, James Brunton Gibb was selected as one of the Anzac Coves Company, a band of entertainers for the soldiers at the front.
    This was the first Field Theatre of the A.I.F. and was financed by the Australian Comforts Fund, which supported veterans. The Anzac Coves not only performed at the front using hand made props and costumes but they also toured Britain. This collection contains posters and programmes from English theatres in which they were welcomed. Before returning to Australia the Anzac Coves appeared by command at Buckingham Palace before the Royal Family and distinguished guests. While in England James Brunton Gibb became a close friend of Mr and Mrs George Mc. A. Scales. They corresponded with each other, Lillie Scales signing herself "your English Mother". Her letters are preserved from 1920 to 1923. In 1921 the English couple visited James in Sydney.
    After his return to Sydney James began taking pupils and soon became well known as a teacher of elocution and a performer at many and varied dramatic and humorous recitals. Over the years he became one of Sydney's prominent theatrical and concert personalities, and was recognised as one of the foremost teachers of speech in New South Wales. He adjudicated at the eisteddfods of the State.
    In 1923, he married Ethel Isabel Lang, whom he had known for several years. Miss Lang was also a performer and continued her career for many decades. The husband and wife often appeared on the same programmes as James Gibb and Ethel Lang, and Miss Lang became widely known for her acting in radio serials such as "The Lawsons" and "Blue Hills". She also took part in lunch time theatres at the Palace Theatre and the Q Theatre. Some of her papers are included in this collection. As well as her stage career Mrs Gibb raised two sons and two daughters.
    James Brunton Gibb enlisted again in December 1942 and rose to the rank of Captain. During the Second World War he was amenities officer at the 113th Australian General Hospital at Concord, where he organised concerts by leading entertainers. He was an early member of Sydney Legacy and was active in several community organisations, including the Freemasons.
    He died on 28 June 1968.
  • Scope and Content
    SERIES 01
    James Brunton Gibb diaries and papers, 14 January 1916-15 June 1919

    SERIES 02
    James Brunton Gibb photographs and postcards, ca. 1915-1940

    SERIES 03
    James Brunton Gibb military papers, 1915-1960

    SERIES 04
    James Brunton Gibb correspondence and poems, 1918-1968

    SERIES 05
    James Brunton Gibb family history papers, 1873-1940

    SERIES 06
    James Brunton Gibb miscellaneous booklets and magazines, 1943-1963

    SERIES 07
    James Brunton Gibb newspaper cuttings

    SERIES 08
    James Brunton Gibb invitations, 1930-1960, 1986

    SERIES 09
    James Brunton Gibb programmes, 1917-1960

    SERIES 10
    James Brunton Gibb posters, 1918
  • Access Conditions

    This material is held offsite and is usually available after 4pm on the next business day. Please submit your request through Ask a Librarian
  • General note

    State Library of New South Wales collection of World War I diaries
    State Library of New South Wales collection of World War I papers
    Partially Microfilmed : Refer to Contents for locations
  • Name
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  • Place

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