Many institutions and individuals hold items and photographs relating to the 1919 Air Race and the Vickers Vimy flight. We are sincerely grateful to those who have shared their treasures with us.


Stuart Reid oil painting

Frederick Brook Hitch sculpture

William McInnes oil painting

Norman Clifford oil painting

Stefan Twaine-Wood mural

John Dowie sculpture


The Great Air Race of 1919 gripped Australia and the world – indeed, experts say that in its day the Vimy landing in Darwin was as awe-inspiring as man landing on the moon 50 years later. Many commemorative pieces have since been created to celebrate the epic achievement of Sir Ross Smith and his crew.

Sir Ross Smith button – Andrew Bennett

Adelaide Mint medallions

1969 phone book – Wendy Robertson

Ross Smith stamp

Souvenir buttons – Steve Harrison

Official Souvenir Booklet – Les Parsons

Vickers Vimy flag

Ross Smith maquette – Pam Hausler

Our Flying Boys music

Tivoli Theatre ‘Welcome Home’ program

Sir Ross Smith Aeroplane Race Game

50th Anniversary Silver Dish

Image: silver dish featuring engraving around its lip. The engraving includes maker's marks and the logo of Vickers for both 1919 and 1969.

Commemorative Fan

Image: paper fan on a wooden stick

Private Collections

Many treasures are held by individuals who have generously shared them with us for the Epic Flight centenary.

Vimy in Adelaide 1920 – Richard Koehne

John Dowie sculpture – Simon Casson

The Wonder Book of Aircraft – Toby

Letter of introduction

Brass plaque – Peter Lane

Ross Smith statuette – Peter Docking

Vickers Vimy crew lead figures – Tom Young

Captain Frank Hurley attaching a camera to the top of the Vimy at Northfield – Ron Blum

Scrap book of the Vickers Vimy arriving at Northfield – Thomas W Farmer

A man and a young girl in a garden looking up at something – Daryl Austin

Vickers Vimy in Adelaide – Eric Van Kruyssen

Vickers Vimy arriving in Darwin – Judith Wirtz

Arrival of the Vickers Vimy at Northfield – Ron Dearing

Vickers Vimy at Northfield Aerodrome – Henley & Grange Historical Society

Robertson Collection

Arthur Robertson was born in 1919 and became fascinated by Australia’s aviation pioneers after seeing the first commercial flight from Adelaide to Perth pass just 20 metres overhead on 2 June 1929. In later life, he used skills developed at Adelaide’s School of Fine Arts to create an incredible array of historical records on the epic flight for use by schools, museums and community groups. His artworks, scrap books and talks were all aimed at rekindling interest in South Australia’s aviation heritage. And by coincidence, Arthur’s wife Eileen was a second cousin to Wally Shiers. Arthur, we salute you!

Vickers Vimy model

Decorative scrapbooks

Framed posters, photos and artworks

Painting on glass – Wendy Robertson

Vimy models


Original Vimy fabric


Etched goblet

Picture boards

The Smith Brothers

This collections relates to the lives of Ross and Keith Smith. After spending┬ápart of their childhood on Mutooroo Station, near Broken Hill, the boys were educated at Queen’s School in North Adelaide. In 1910, Ross joined the Australian Mounted Cadets and was selected to represent South Australia in an international tour. He enlisted in August 1914, joining the 3rd Light Horse Brigade, and fought in the Dardanelles and at Romani before transferring to the Australian Flying Corps. Keith joined the Royal Flying Corps in Britain in 1917.


Queen’s School medallion

Sir Ross Smith watch

Adelaide Harriers Running Club

1909 autograph book drawings

Medal Minatures

Image: 6 medals and ribbons aligned. Five of the six are circular and the sixth is a cross with a circular middle and a crown on top.

Cigarette Case

Image: external photo of metal cigarette case. Engraved are the initials KMS and the insignia of the Royal Flying Corps above and underneath

Pilots Wings

Image: two sets of gold braid wings on navy fabric