Please note: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website may contain images, voices or names of deceased persons in photographs, film, audio recordings or printed material.

Some material may contain terms that reflect authors’ views, or those of the period in which the item was written or recorded, but may not be considered appropriate today. These views are not necessarily the views of AIATSIS. While the information may not reflect current understanding, it is provided in an historical context.


Our online exhibitions are best viewed on a larger screen.

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The story of the 1967 Referendum begins with the Australian Constitution, which came into effect on 1 January 1901, establishing the Commonwealth of Australia. It is an important living document that continues to shape the Australian nation.

It's not easy to change the Constitution. It takes years of campaigning, to win hearts and minds, as well as a whole army of dedicated people all coming together to form a massive groundswell of public support.

This online exhibition is a tribute to the thousands upon thousands of voluntary campaigners who worked tirelessly for a decade, educating a nation, towards a referendum Australia had to have, which was held on 27 May 1967.

References, further reading and image credits.

AIATSIS acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land, culture and community.

We pay our respects to elders past and present.