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Christmas 2009
Christmas 2009

Our History

Keeping it Alive history project logo

Please support our “Keeping it Alive” history project. Volunteer to help sort through archives or contact us about any historical items you have of relevance to The Salvation Army. Find out more at Keeping It Alive

Whether you want to know two or three sentences about Our History, or a whole lot more, we would like to help you...

Navigate through this section to find out about:

  • The Salvation Army’s establishment in London’s East End during the latter part of the 19th century by Salvation Army founders, William and Catherine Booth
  • The Army’s beginnings in Australia and service to the Australian community over the past 125 years
  • William Booth’s In Darkest England scheme, a blueprint for modern-day State welfare systems
  • Some amazing pioneering ventures initiated by The Salvation Army, including the first safety matches and the world’s first feature film.
  • Other surprising bits of information about The Salvation Army - see our 'Did you Know?' page. For example, did you know The Beatles song “Strawberry Fields” was named after a Salvation Army children’s home where John Lennon spent time as a child?

Need more information?

If you have a detailed historical project and need more information, contact our Heritage Centres in Sydney and Melbourne Includes a useful timeline.

You may also wish to visit our International Heritage Centre in London online at This is a great website, full of interesting information and photographs.

See also our suggested Further Reading list and/or contact Salvationist Supplies for reading material.

Periodical Newsletter

The latest issue of the Legends heritage newsletter can be downloaded from