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Andrew Kilsby

Cooee History & Heritage

Andrew is an early career historian, published author and researcher. His strengths as an historian lie with military, biographical, business and social history in the period 1850-1920, but he has wide ranging history interests across most periods. His history consulting firm, Cooee History & Heritage, was established in 2009. He also works as the Operations and Marketing Manager at the National Vietnam Veterans Museum in Phillip Island, Victoria.

Andrew graduated from RMC Duntroon with a B.A. in Military Studies from UNSW. Eleven years of Defence Force service and a further 11 years with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade followed, with postings over that period to Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand. Andrew completed a Bachelor of Letters (Lit.B.) in Asian History from UNE, based on the thesis The Indonesian Nationalist Resistance to the Dutch Occupation of Jogjakarta 1945-47. From 1994 to 2009 Andrew worked in a variety of public relations and corporate affairs roles in both consulting firms and multinational companies in Asia and Australia. He is currently completing a PhD in history at the Australian Defence Force Academy. His thesis looks at The Rifle Club Movement and Australian Defence 1860-1941.

He has written several military history books. Lions of the Day (2008), which told the story of the SA Contingent to Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, including 26 individual biographies, followed by The Bisley Boys (2009), which told the story of the Victorian Rifle Team which travelled to Bisley in England in 1897 to compete successfully against the best of the Empire for the Kolapore Cup, including team biographies. Andrew has also co-authored fallen leaves (2010), a local history detailing the WWI fallen of the Oakleigh district of Melbourne, and most recently, The Forgotten Cruiser: HMAS Melbourne 1913-1928 (2013) with Greg Swinden. His next book also to be published in June 2013, is The Riflemen: A History of the National Rifle Association of Australia 1888-1988 (the NRAA is Australia’s oldest national sporting organisation).

Andrew has convened military history conferences including In the Shadow of War: Australia 1942 (2012) and Choppers: Helicopters and the Vietnam War (2013) and produced military history exhibitions, including Citizen Soldiers of Oakleigh (2012) at the Monash Federation Centre, and most recently, the major centenary exhibition at the Royal Historical Society of Victoria, Fear God and Honour the King: HMAS Melbourne 1913-1928 (2013). Andrew is a member of the Professional Historians Association and volunteers as Executive officer of the Military History and Heritage Victoria Inc.