History of The Big Soldier
The Big Soldier in Uralla stands guard in front of the Hassett’s Military Museum in Uralla, a small town on New England Highway, New South Wales.
The sculpture symbolises the Military Museum’s collections by its owner and former Lieutenant, Hassett Darcy. He started collecting military paraphernalia during his time in service and later decided to open up the museum in 1989. His collections consisted of service arms and objects from World War I to the Vietnam War.
Unfortunately, Mr Darcy took ill with bone cancer and could not continue managing the museum, as it was far from his home in Ballina. As a result, he decided it was time to let go of his collections.
The museum’s auction attracted many potential buyers from across Australia. Although Mr Darcy had grown fond of his collection over the years, he did not have a hard time letting them go. Instead, he believed that their new owners would give them better care in their new home, continuing with the work that he had started many years ago.
Although the museum closed shop, the Big Soldier remains on guard. Like Mr Darcy, the Big Soldier preserves memories of military service and visitors, both international and local, who graced the museum while it was operational. Mr Darcy particularly remembers meeting the British High Commissioner among other international celebrities who showed a lot of interest in his collections.
More Big Things in New South Wales
Other than the Big Soldier sculpture, there are several other Big Things worth checking out in this state. Some great examples include:
- The Big Miner’s Lamp in Bowenfels
- The Big Gold Panner in Kelso
- The Big Knight in Knockrow
- The Big Headphones in Newcastle
- The Big Mosquito in Hexham
- The Big Oyster in Taree