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A Morning at the World’s Greatest Agricultural Show (c.1926)


This fragment is from a documentary about the Royal Agricultural Show held at the Sydney Showground in approximately 1926. Horses and cattle are prepared for display prior to the agricultural events. We see children grooming, saddling and riding ponies in an imitation of what the adults do. Also included are scenes of the Grand Parade in the main ring of the showground and the large crowds in attendance sitting in the pavilions. The film contains intertitles.

Curator’s notes

This straightforward documentary provides a glimpse into the lives of the trainers, handlers and owners of horses and livestock competing and on parade at the Show. An intertitle indicates that in the year the footage was filmed, the Show attracted over 150,000 visitors in one day. Its popularity continues to this day.

A highlight is the young boy in clip one who shows that children will always follow in the footsteps of adults. He grooms, saddles and mounts his pony with the confidence of a true performer.

It was shot on 35mm nitrate film and is one of many short documentaries produced in the 1920s and 1930s to promote and present Australian industrial, agricultural and manufacturing achievements. However, like so much historical non-fiction film, its provenance remains unclear and the context of its production is unknown. There are no production credits evident in the surviving fragment and the film’s title derives from the first title card appearing in the footage.