diaries / reminiscences

Not being an avid diary keeper, there is however, the occasional diary of a trip.

A new addition written in late 2017 is a recount of a conference held in Atlanta, Georgia (USA) in 1986. In recalling the events it was found that certain memories did not match either photographs or diary entries of the time.

Another diary is from 1955 and concerns an extensive outback trip around half of Australia for the NSW Board of Architects’ Bursary.

travel films

Some travel films from the mid 1950's.

Reminiscences of 1986 Atlanta

The celing of the banquent hall of the Biltmore Hotel in Atlanta... or is it?


Illustrated diaries / reminiscences


Reminiscences 1986 Atlanta - Real or False Memories (2017).

Ross Thorne (illustrated with photographs taken during the trip)

Previously unpublished; 11 pages, 114 photographs  

Memories were a starting point but proved to conflict with photographs of the time. Further research lead to even more inaccuracies in the recall of time, place and events.

This reminiscence explores, in part, the disentangling of memories (which seemed perfectly clear and accurate just last week), from the truths of events 31 years in the past.

Time does change our perceptions and the validity of even the most solid recollections.

File size 1.6MB




Diary of a NSW Board of Architects’ Bursary Trip to Northern and Central Australia, 1955.

Ross Thorne (illustrated with photographs taken during the trip)

Previously unpublished; 78 pages, 194 photographs / diagrams  

For two months in 1955 the author and a companion travelled in an ex-army Land Rover over the rough tracks of northern Queensland, the Barkly Tableland, and Central Australia, recording on film and diary, the cattle stations, buffalo shooting and later-to-become tourist destinations of the MacDonnell Ranges and Uluru. The tour finished at Cooper Pedy (before returning home).

File size 41.4MB


Travel Films (on DVD)


Gulf Country (1955)

This 16mm, professionally-recorded sound film, was a part outcome of an architectural bursary research trip from Cairns, to Normanton, Mt Isa, across the Barkly Tableland to Darwin, Alice Springs and Cooper Pedy. Film photographed aimed at recording the general environment of an area such as the Normanton-Gulf Country on the Cape York Peninsula, as recorded in this film. It includes the township, cattle stations, and wild-life at water holes. It supplements a portion of the 1955 diary, also on this web-site. (DVT-61)

Flight Across South America (1957/2000)

Flight Across South America (1957/2002) is a tourist, colour, sound film photographed on 16 mm “Kodachrome” in 1957 and completed in 1960. Glimpses included are of Montevideo, Buenos Aires, Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Cuzco and Machu Picchu. The music track was by Manny Pearce playing impromptu to the film. (DVT-62)

For copies of these films please contact the National Film and Sounnd Archive.

Gulf Country

South America