The State Library holds a large collection of ephemera, which are the transient documents of everyday life such as pamphlets, leaflets, flyers, tickets and posters. Thousands of items are available and range from festival and concert programs, shipwrecks and materials produced during an election through to real estate advertisements to sell properties and biographical information on many Western Australians.

Ephemera Stories

Black and white photo of performers in makeup backstage
Posters from Connections Nightclub
WA history
Many think that 'treasures' have to be old - we do not believe this. Many of our treasures are simple items that reflect what was happening at the time.
Westralias Wonderful Wildflowers page 17
Pressed wildflowers
SLWA on ABC Radio
Dr Kate as she discusses the ‘wildflower work’ of Lilian Wooster Greaves (1869-1956) who produced and exhibited pressed wildflowers from 1915.
Prime Minister Robert Bob Hawke c1984
SLWA on ABC Radio
Damien Hassan, Senior Archivist at the State Records Office of WA, talks about Mr Hawke’s student record and why school records are important State archives.
WW1 illustration of soldier on cigarette card
Letters, stories, maps and cigarette cards
ANZAC stories
SLWA on ABC Radio
WA history
Peter Edwards, Heritage Team Librarian, discusses original ANZAC materials from the State Library archives.
DH Lawrence letter to Mollie Skinner envelope 1923
SLWA on ABC Radio
Dr Kate unpacks why we have a surprising collection of D.H. Lawrence letters that were written to WA’s Mollie Skinner.
Page from Scrapbook of memorabilia from the Coffee Pot Northbridge c1950s-1970s
SLWA on ABC Radio
On 19 May 2020, Dr Kate discussed a more recent piece of Western Australian social history: a scrapbook containing mementos of a Perth café that was around from the 1950s to the early 1980s.

Highlights of the Ephemera Collection

The collections listed below are a small selection from the thousands of items available. Others can be found through broad collection listings or in the State Library Catalogue.

Biographical Information - biographical and genealogical information on many Western Australians.

Catalogues of Exhibitions held at Western Australian Art Galleries - gathered over a number of years and for many Western Australian art galleries. Biographical details of artists are included in some catalogues.

Concerts Organised by the Australian Broadcasting Commission -  programs for concerts organised by the Australian Broadcasting Commission since 1934 and includes concerts by the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra.

Country Women's Association of Western Australia. Pioneer Women's Memorial Fund - a series of nine volumes of photocopied cards compiled by the Country Women's Association Pioneer Women's Memorial Fund. The cards provide brief biographies of many country women pioneers. Some entries include birth and death dates, also maiden and married name.

Deaths and Tombstone Inscriptions Gathered From Western Australian Graveyards and Cemeteries  -  tombstone inscriptions for many Western Australian cemeteries transcribed by various members of the Western Australian Genealogical Society.

Firms and Businesses Operating in Western Australia - materials produces by WA businesses. The names of people associated with these businesses may also be found.

Local Government Elections -  information on candidates at the time of those elections may also be provided.

Localities (Suburbs and Towns) in Western Australia -  files arranged alphabetically by locality name (i.e. town or suburb name) containing information about church groups, schools, local businesses, community organisations, social and sporting activities, buildings.

National Trust of Australia (WA.) -  materials issued by the National Trust of Australia (WA.) which contains material about the Trust as well as some National Trust listed buildings.

Programmes of Concerts Organised by the Australian Broadcasting Commission -  since 1934 and includes concerts by the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra

Programmes of Festival of Perth Events - events staged by the Festival of Perth since 1953.

Real Estate Advertisements Relating to Residential and Commercial Properties and Land Sales - advertisements produced at the time of selling a property or house. They may include a history of the house or property and information on the owners.

Record of Deaths and Tombstone Inscriptions from Western Australian Graveyards and Cemeteries - transcribed by various members of the Western Australian Genealogical Society (Inc).

Royal Visitors to Western Australia -  since 1901.

Schools and Teachers, 1867-1985 - four files of newspaper clippings about Western Australian schools and teachers, organised in alphabetical order by the main subject of the article.

Ships, Boats and Shipwrecks in Western Australia - arranged in subcollections for each ship name and includes a large number of wreck reports published by the Western Australian Museum.

Western Australian State Government Election - material produced at the time of State elections, including handbills, how to vote cards, posters, stickers, etc., which may contain information on candidates at those elections.

This page last updated on