Censors, Conscripts & Queensland


Censors, Conscripts & Queensland

Conscription and Censorship in WW1

A song and story performance by John Thompson.

In 2015, Brisbane-based lawyer, songwriter and performer, John Thompson was a awarded a QANZAC100 Fellowship from the State Library of Queensland to research stories of conscription in Queensland in the First World War.  The show consists of six songs, five of which are original compositions written for the performance, illustrated by still photographs of events and documents that inform the tales of this great era of conflict in Australian political history.

The show is available for school or stand-alone performances.

Songs from the show are available from the shop on this site.


Here’s a sample – Stable’s March.  It tells the story of the soldier’s raid on the Government Printer’s Office in Brisbane at the behest of the Prime Minister, Billy Hughes.  They were ordered to seize every copy of Hansard #37, which contained the transcript of an anti-conscription speech by the Premier, TJ Ryan.  Only 3 copies of that Hansard survive.