Margaret Harris’ Diary – 1939



1 January            Desperately hot again.  Tom, Neville & Co. went to Weir again.  Marg Cooke holidaying with us.  Talking to Jim and George from Sydney – they are having a good time.  Dave Cooke in hospital they think it may be tetanus – leaned his elbow on a rusty nail.  Doctor had to open it tonight and clean it out.

Tommy and Herbie went to see doctor about Nick – have not seen them since they came back.  Took œ4 for Doll’s board.

2/3 January         Desperately hot.  Nothing happening only people flying thro to the dam to try and keep themselves cool.  Dib went back to work – Herb Newham was going fishing so he went with him.

4 January            Tommy, Herbie and Nick left at 5.30 am for Sydney.  Nick going to Lewisham Hospital for an x-ray.  Mrs Ryan leaving for Sydney too.  Darcy going to see his wool sold.  Stormy all round yesterday evening – very little rain but the air is fresh this morn.  Aub was in on the inquest of Jimmy Larson’s death.  The finding was accidental.

Tommy wired they reached hospital 1 pm.  Nick very comfy.  Edie went to doctor tonight – says she has a bad bilious attack and gave stuff to rub on knees.

5 January            Slightly cooler – storm around but we only got a few drops of rain.  Alex Sligar taken to Sydney same night as Nick.  Symptoms seem same – gone to Lewisham too.

6 January            Still very hot and no sign of change.  No word from Nick yet.  Georgie went fishing this evening arrived home 1.30 am but fish still in river.

7 January            Heat wave still on.  Races today.  I won a few bob.  George went to see if any fish on lines but alas and alack, none.  Letters from Tom about Uncle Nick.  He is much better altho not much treatment – wishing for corn beef and steak.

8 January            Fr O’Kennedy.  Desperately hot – all hands went away swimming and left me and George to swelter.  Boys playing cricket at Holmwood with Western Stores.  Darbys won.  Trying to rain.  We had a few drops but storm went round.  Aub and Tilly down.

9 January            Heat wave still – Georgie going to town for goods.  9 pm.  Lovely cool breeze blowing from the south tonight.  Charlie finished on other road – went thro to see Dave.  He is better.  Tommy rang up said doctor says as far as he can see the trouble is misplaced gall bladder – if so, they must drain.  They have not the result of x-ray. Tis a good thing Nick is out of this awful heat – the temperature yesterday was 110.

10 January          Very hot again.  Edie went via Maryamma with George – staying with Nellie tonight.  Jimmy rang up from Griffith – he had a great time in Sydney – went back last Sunday.  Received first copy of the paper with the punch.

11 January          Very hot still.  Jim Ward got load of logs for F.C. Rowlands [Woodstock] – delivered today.

12 January          Beastly hot.  Nick’s operation tomorrow.  Not real well.  Satisfied to operate if not a growth.

13 January          Bad news about Nick.  Malignant growth in gall bladder.  Can leave hospital in two weeks.  Tom will stay with him.  Aunty Nick very sad – great shock to them all.

14 January          Still very hot, don’t know how we are going thro it.  George taken to hospital – could not stop his nose from bleeding.

15 January          Fr O’Kennedy this morning.  His voice was very weak.  Thelma Murray rang up and thinks Uncle Nick very bad – put in a call to Tom and he says there is a little improvement.  Jim took the pledge today till Easter.  Lovely change in weather.  No rain.

16 January          Very hot again but expecting change.  No rain but much cooler.  George coming home from hospital.  Lovely night for sleeping.  New road to Cowra started today.

17 January          Wonderful cool change but no sign of rain.  Jim delivered load of logs to Mr Rowlands.  Georgie went to Cowra to bring him home.  Finished Form 100.  Edie gone with Georgie.  Anne went home.

18 January          Still beautiful and cool.  Did not get up till about 7 am – a bit of change to last week rising at 5 am and showering.  Pictures tonight ‘The Awful Truth’.  I’ve seen it but if Nick still improving I may go.  Nick ever so much better.

19 January          A trifle warmer today.

20-22 January     Only heat to talk about.  I ring about Nick every night – he is improving.  Ena went home for a few days – her mother’s leg is bad.  She thinks she will rest better if the children are away.  Talking to Jimmy last night the 22nd – he is well.

23 January          Beastly hot yet – no sign of rain.  Georgie starting out on his run again.  Aub and Jack came for dinner every day while Thelma is in Sydney.

Edie went up and stayed with Nellie last night.  I think we can get Mrs McDonald to stay with the children while Nellie has a holiday.

25 January          Very hot again – stormy looking but we get no rain.  Rodeo here tonight over on Mrs Daniel’s allotment.  All heads at Weir today – talk of touring camps up above Aub’s.  Nick doing well – had a lot of visitors tonight.  Mrs McElligot and daughter Alice, Greg Jordan and Beryl.  Had lovely storm in the night – quite a steady shower.  Rodeo show had to shut down owing to rain.

26 January          Jack’s [Ward] birthday.  Very muggy.  Hoping for more rain.  Georgie in Cowra.  Paid W.H.Hill œ1.6.6 for papers also final payment on table.  Lovely cool change this evening.

27 January          Very cold today.  I had to put my warm coat on.  Mrs Nick in bed resting bad leg.  Nick doing well so I’m not ringing tonight.

31 January          Another heat wave – not so bad as last.  Tommy says his father gradually growing weaker.  May live a month.


1 February          Bid, Ena and Herbie left for Sydney at 8.30.  Edie staying with Aunt Mary.  Bid Ward not well – children are very concerned – think her heart is weak.

1 February      Very hot again.  Bad news from Tommy.  Sister told Nick he was dying and he was annointed.  Tommy says he seems resigned – he is too weak to bring home.  Aub working on culvert till 8pm.

2 February          Bill [Markham] rang this morning – he would like to see Nick so we may go down.  Dreadfully hot again.  Bid Ward seems better this morning.

4 February          Going to Sydney.  Left at 4.10 am.  Bill, myself, Winnie and children.  Had a good trip – arrived Sydney about 11 am.  Tom met us at Ashfield – went straight to hospital.  Nick knew us and was pleased to see us.  He is very weak.  Winnie went from Lewisham in taxi.  Staying at boarding house with Tom, Ena and Bid.  Jimmy gave cheerio call from Griffith.  I was not here to hear it.

5 February          Went to Mass at Lewisham then to see Nick.  Getting weaker each day.  Went back to hospital after dinner – met Mat [Walsh], Hannah and Kit.  Left for home at 4 pm, brought Fred Millhouse from hospital – he is over 65 and it was his first trip in a car and his longest trip.  He works for the nuns.  Arrived Cowra 11 pm and home before midnight.  Herbie came home with us.

6 February          Very warm morning – no news from Nick – he is wishing for the end.  Seems strange without the kiddies – I miss them very much.  Dawsett took Herald and paid one week.

7 February          Uncle Nick died this morning 3.30 am at Lewisham.  Bringing him home tonight – funeral here 3.30 tomorrow.  Tommy bringing his mother home today.  Very warm again.  Putting Plume [Brand of Petrol] in bowser.

8 February          Nick’s funeral over – largest ever in Darbys – 47 cars.  Everyone came to show respect.  Mr Rodwell lined the children up as the funeral passed the school.  All the relief men got time off to come up – it was really beautiful.  His nephews carried the coffin to the grave, the three Markhams, Bill’s two son’s and Georgie.

9 February          Very hot day – went up to see Aunty Bid.  She is very sad.  Mrs Cusack and Molly Ryan still there, also Ena.  Beryl and Sam here today – called to take the kiddies home.

10 February        Roasting hot today again.  Georgie gone to town for goods.  The Pope passed away this morning at 5.30.

11/12 February   Nothing startling – desperately hot, no sign rain.  Aub and Thelma down.

13 February        Still heat wave – no sign rain.  Dib gone to town with Geo selling Frankie’s bottles.  Doll gone to doctor again.  Aida sold her first afternoon tea to Mr McInerney, S.British agent.

14/16 February   Nothing but heat to write about – Doll went to doctor and had injection for piles.


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24 May                Our annual Catholic ball is to take place tonight.  Nell Ryan and Edie secretaries.  Everyone working and hope to have a good night.  Haywood’s orchestra coming from Orange

25 May                Ball a great success.  Supper was best we’ve had.  Turkey, tongue, pork – beautiful dishes of trifle.  Door takings œ22.3.1 – made œ38.17.0 altogether – expenses œ16.13.11.  Juvenile tonight.  Orchestra arrived two and a half hours late.  I just went up to play when they landed.  Edie gave them a tongue banging.  Dot Ellery won 10/- note.  Mrs T. Whitty whisky.  Tot playing for Juvenile tonight.

31 May                Small boy named Whatmore killed today.  He and three other children were on the back of a lorry and he didn’t jump clear.  The wheel ran over his head.


1 June                 My birthday – 62 years old today and thank God I feel splendid.  Tis raining too.  Had a telegram from Jimmy and Nellie sent me a lovely nighty.  This book is George’s present and I believe a little surprise for Phil to come later.  Jim Ward went in today thinking he will get a ticket to go to work.  Received case of apples from Jimmy.  My surprise that I mentioned early was a lovely porcelain wash basin for the bathroom, also a piece of linoleum.

2 June                 Mr Dolman arrived today to take charge of shop for one month.  Raining still and cold.  Very good day in shop – money coming in fairly well.  Started Geo account for shop in Savings Bank.

3 June                 Still raining and cold.  Had fair day at races.  Neville and Georgie gone to town.  Aubrey and Thelma also went thro.  Nellie moved from Keswick Street today to cottage in Brisbane Street.

4 June                 Still raining.  Mass this morning.  Mr Dolman a Catholic too.  Dib and George gone to Koorawatha to play tennis.  George joining Holy Name Society.

5 June                 Raining lightly and very miserable.  Mr Ball from Wright Heatons came out today for a little pow wow with us and gave George some good advice re managing the shop.

6 June                 Still raining – washing held up.  Jack laying linoleum in the bathroom.  A bit of a brawl happened between Jack, Edie and Winnie but they cooled off after a while.  Emilie did not ring up and George is going to say all sorts of things to her when she does.  Senr not too well today – has bad head.  Mr Stanners, the butcher, brought the mail today.  Deafy was with him.  Aunty Bid went up with Georgie today to see Ena.  Super Shell Bowser filled this morning.  Had a good day at races.

7 June                 Fine day but cold.  Road men started on culvert down at Wards.  Letter from Jimmy.  Done well at races.  Charlie went home to let Nellie go pictures with Neville to see ‘Girl of the Golden West’.  Jack finished putting porcelain dish in bathroom – my present from the family and Edie and Jack.  I had first wash and called it Margaret’s Basin.  Jack also laid linoleum.  Mr Dolman sees us all out at night.  He is nearly last to go to bed.

8 June                 Very cold but fine.  Country Women’s birthday today – girls making cakes for afternoon tea.  Tot had wire from Mrs Bragg – she is coming out.  Chas. brought smallgoods and butter out for me this morning.  Mrs Bragg came to CW birthday and brought three other visitors – enjoyed her evening very much.  Said twas jollier than the meeting at Koorawatha.

9 June                 Very cold this morning but fine and the sun is trying to struggle out.  I’m hugging the fire as I have a bad cold.  Dib and Georgie gone to town – Dib to get a tooth out.  Jim Ward is cementing a tank for Mrs Taylor.

10 June               Nothing startling today – only races.  Weather not too nice.  George went to pictures and took Thellie and Eric.

11 June               Mass this morning – Archdeacon out.  Good attendance.  Weather fair.  Aub and Thelma to Mass and stayed all day.  Georgie is in town playing in tennis tournament.

12 June               King’s birthday.  Races again at Randwick – I won a certain amount.  Georgie stayed in town, he is playing again today.  Got two loads of wood from Geo. Elliott’s.  Dib helps Percy Ford to load.  Nellie and family out for the afternoon, brought me a dear little pup.  I have called it Tip as each little foot has a white tip and he is all black.

13 June               Dull morning again.  Jim Ward running water into Taylor’s tank to see if cement is OK.  Georgie had good tennis but was beaten in last round.  He is very tired but has to do his rounds again.  Went to see Bid Ward this arvo.  Pup doing trouble all over the verandah.  Mr Chesher [Baker at Woodstock] called today re price of bread – first time I met them – they are very nice people – he is sending bread by mailman in future.

16 June               Boys busy today cutting two loads wood with saw.  Dib rolling tennis court, but had to come and finish wood as Jim had to go on the road.

17 June               Mr Barr called this morning – did not give big order but a œ7 cash order for jam and matches.  Races this arvo – I only won œ2.  Georgie, Eric and Thelly and Jack went in to pictures.

18 June               Holy Mass – Archdeacon out.

19 June               Miserable morning, misty rain but Thellie will wash.  Georgie to town on business – home to dinner.  Hargans came out with new V8 truck.  Aida put meals down to 1/- for permanents and 1/6 casuals.  Some new men on the road today.  Gift evening in CWA rooms Cowra for Lyn Doble who is to be married [to Norm Oliver] this week – Georgie said twas a good turn out – he went with Ray Oliver and did not get home till 3 am.

20 June               Finer this morning but cold.  Tiger’s court case on today – no school as Mr Rodwell has to attend the court.  Later – Tiger and co. home – case adjourned.  Rodwell had no witnesses, so it comes on again in a fortnight.  Aida rang Cudal, Canowindra, Eugowra where men are coming from next week to let them know of the boarding house.

21 June               Rained last night after we went to bed – until morning – but fine now.  John Cooke is five years old today.  Geo Senr is planting onions.  Junr. gone to Graham as usual.  Norm Oliver is to be married today.

22 June               Edie, Georgie and Nellie went to Hospital Ball at Cowra – wonderful turnout.  Charlie took them in and they all came home about 4 am.  Jack went in too to see Gunga Din.

23 June               Tommy Markham’s birthday.  Urban and Lee finished job with Tom, Norm Oliver’s house.  Mrs Darcy Ryan still in hospital after big operation – looks very well.

24 June               Races again.  Edie lost, so did Winnie.  Withers was over here.  Tot sitting saying shoo all thro.  Ron Oliver operated on for appendicitis.

25 June               Darbys played tennis against Cowra and won.  Thirty new men arrived this afternoon from Eugowra, Cudal, Canowindra for this road.  Women’s Sunday and Fr Masterton out – Holy Hour tonight.

26 June               Very miserable morning.  Thellie will wash no matter what the day is like.  George went to Cowra – Ray Newham went too.  Races in Melbourne – only a few lady punters.

27 June               Still misty rain.  Writing to Aida to see if she’ll sell me one of her blocks.  Tommy finished up at Norm Oliver’s.  Men drawing wood to camps at River.  Eric had to leave work this morning with flu.  Jim got new pants from Palmers – on for first time today – bellbottoms.

28 June               Sun trying to struggle out this morning.  Georgie gone to Graham – his father went with him to open the gates.  Walter Howarth put sheep in Mrs Taylor’s yard to eat down grass.  Jim Ward making cutting over creek in Ray’s paddock to get wood over.  Mrs Eric Newham in hospital. Dib and Georgie doing bills in kitchen – tomorrow is pay day on Murringal side.  Edie won at races today – backed Lappin all the time.  Eric Ward still sick, they rang doctor – he has gastric flu.

29 June               Pouring rain this morning.  Men on the road cannot work.  Eric Newham and Charlie went to town for timber – ran out of petrol on the road – too late for Eric to go to Neville’s for tea so he and Chas. brought in one pound of steak each and we fried it for them.  Aub and Thelma went in to see ‘The Mikado’ – took Dos with them.  Eric Ward still sick.

30 June               Showery and cold this morning.  Men at work.  Just blowing up rock at Ward’s corner.  Just sent 48 labels to Bushells for two large bath towels.


1 July                  Raining at intervals all day – very miserable.  A good turn up to the races – won a few bob myself.  Georgie went to town on business and out by dinner – did not go to town tonight.  Stayed home to do the bills but postponed it till Sydney night.  Just about to go to bed at 11.30 and Clement’s rang to say Hyle’s house burnt down – they are at a gymkhana at Newhaven Park and a dance at woolshed.  Cannot get in touch with them.

2 July                  Mr Hyles was found this morning dead in Oliver Markham’s bed.  Don’t know yet what happened.  Mrs Hyles at Dunn’s.  She went to gymkhana with Dunns.  Mr H. did not go. [Oliver worked on Hyles property and had room in shearers’ quarters].   Very cold today but sun shining.

3 July                  Very heavy frost this morning but a lovely day after.  Georgie went to town had a few passengers – Cookes out yesterday afternoon – Margaret and Murray walked from Cowra driving a cow.  Marg. in bed today very tired and not too well.  John also has a bad foot – stuck an old pitchfork in it.

4 July                  Aunty Bid Ward 80 years old today and is in very good health.  Sammy rang from Orange.  Beryl and kids are in bed with flu.  Jim Ward out at Elliotts gathering charcoal for road.  Charlie had to go home tonight.  John’s foot not too good.  Hesse’s truck gave Pluto [dog] a nasty bump today – he has a bad habit of chasing cars and is too slow to get out of the road.  So we think he might die.  He seems badly hurt.  May have broken his hip.  Aunty Bid Markham went up to Ena’s with Georgie to stay a few days.

5 July                  Sun shining this morning but not very warm.  Georgie gone to Graham.  I’m just writing to Jimmy.  Charlie says John’s foot OK.  He took him to the doctor.  Nellie was just frightened.  Pluto a little better tonight.


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4 August              I have not written for ages – all hands have had the flu.  Tess was off for several days, Thellie too.  Nellie and kids have been in hospital with flu and discharging ears – had about ten days there.  Betty Ryan’s baby born.  I must find the right date – a little daughter – they say calling it Suzanne Philomena.

5 August              Tonight Church of England should hold a dance to pay expenses for their Ball but owing to bad weather and the flu it had to be postponed and I had a bad side so couldn’t play, so they are holding it this week-end.

6 August              Fr Reen out this morning – forgot bread and wine so we were late home.

7 August              Raining and very cold – could not wash.  I went to town with Georgie – my teeth were hurting me so had a little filed off.  Had dinner with Nellie – John much better.

9 August              Only doing washing today.  Seems to be always raining and cold.

10 August            You should just see Darbys street today – about 90 men with picks and shovels and Jim and Clarrie digging two holes for COR bowser and the men here to put it up.  Shell man here too with petrol for Super and Ordinary – Georgie has gone to town and taken men for their tickets.  Ray Newham is coming home with him – has been in Moira hospital for about ten days with flu.  Heard this morning there is a case of measles in town – don’t know if true – I’m going up to Aub’s this afternoon.  Frost this morning – we expected a nice day but tis cloudy.  Edie’s brother Jack [Smart] just informed her that he was married by Fr Morison at Young yesterday.  His wife Mrs McDonald said she hadn’t heard of her husband for 3 years and to best of her belief he was dead.

11 August            Bitterly cold morning – snow at Mt McDonald 2 inches deep.  Poor men out on the road trying to get their time in – COR not yet finished.  Four electricians out to put lights in bowsers – Georgie took snap of the road – tis a regular beehive here.  Reg Ward came home tonight.  Anne Cooke eight years old today.

12 August            Sun struggling out today but no warmth.  Dance a great success tonight.  Secretary’s to Church of England functions had œ15.10.0 clear – I earned 18/6d.

13 August            Fr O’Kennedy out – everything over quick and lively.  Emilie out for weekend.  Ceremonies tonight in Cowra enrolment in Holy Name.  George came home at midnight shivering.  Had aspros and lemon and went to bed.

14 August            Georgie very sick this morning – Doctor says tonsilitis and ordered him to bed for a week:  gargle his throat every four hours.  Nolan’s started to pull down old shop this morning.  Jean Murray had son today calling it Robert Murray Hughes.

15 August            This is our unlucky day although I went to Holy Mass this morning.  Georgie is still very sick.  Shop boys took truck out this afternoon and turned it over – groceries all over the road – but thank God they were not hurt.  I got a shock when Bill Sopp walked in and said did you know your truck was turned over?  Charlie took men up to put it back on wheels again and Jack has gone up to bring it home.

Raining like one thing all the afternoon.  Georgie may go to hospital tonight.  He thinks the other side of his throat is swelling.

Sent Geo to hospital. Doctor is keeping him a few days.  Percy and Noel had mishap today – truck had broken spring and tipped over and spilt groceries.

16 August            Cold day again but fine.  Percy and Noel served Maryamma in Percy’s truck.  Eden Whitty won œ200 sent bullet to Sun Innocents abroad and he put ‘Street Singers in Glasgow’. [This was a competition for acaption for a picture – Eden also very clever at writing poetry]. Nolan’s still taking old shop down.  George more comfortable today.

17 August            Lovely morning – men working on road.  Percy and Noel gone up to Ossie with food.  George better but cannot come home.

18 August            Raining again, very miserable.  The men seeking shelter under the verandah.

19 August            Fine morning but dull.  Jack took truck in to garage to have spring fixed.  Winnie took baby to doctor to show his arm but says he’s OK.  Aub and Tilly went thro to town.

20 August            Father Masterton.  Raining like blazes all went to Mass tho.  Nellie and kids out in afternoon – Marg and Anne had to stay in town for concert practice.  Herb Wass brought a 12lb. trout down – gave Senr. half of it.  Talking to Jimmy tonight.

21 August            Raining again – Sam Howarth went with Noel today.  Percy thought he had to go for wool but rain stopped him.  Tess took Form 100 home to do it.  Charlie and Eric Newham went to Cowra to children’s concert.

22 August            Pouring rain again.  Sammy Howarth gone to town for goods and to bring George home from hospital.

25 August            Church of England Ball.  Phyllis is a bit inclined to postpone owing to water over the bridge.  Several people were coming from the other side.  Water came over the spillway about 4 pm. Thursday and over the bridge here about 1 o’clock.

26 August            Ball a great success considering all things.  œ16 door takings.  Tis really wonderful where they come from in such bad weather.  Tonight a juvenile.  I am playing.  Nellie was out to the Ball.  Aub and Tilly could not get over the bridge.

27 August            Dib’s dray just arrived.  He’ll be permanent; now.  Good crowd at Juvenile.  They danced till 12.15.  They did not offer to collect so I played the medley.  Phyllis says they have œ22 clear.  Geo just took Emilie home.

28 August            Not a bad morning but wind is always keen altho the sun is warm.  Dib has the cold and a sore hand so Charlie Howarth is on his dray.  Jim is digging an important hole in the back yard [pit toilet].  Geo Senr is not very well – I want him to see doctor but he will not go.

There was a brawl at Henderson’s Store at Mulyan Saturday night and Andrews his son-in-law is charged with manslaughter and Henderson died on his way to hospital. Some woman a bit out of her head jumped into the river – but the shock brought her round but she is in the mental hospital.

29 August            Bitter wind blowing this morning – all men at work in the road.  Dib is on his dray – the children are funny they are real thrilled about Daddy’s dray.  Jim still digging the hole.  Just eleven o’clock and Edie is still in bed.

5.30 pm.  Jim just finished hole and they have moved lavatory.  Edie had a letter from Alice Murray.

30 August            Weather still unsettled.  A few showers.  Men all working on the road – Georgie gone to Graham – Edie went to see her father.  Little Maria Wass was scalded on the arm today – they say Herbie picked her up and in doing so tipped up a saucepan of soup.  Aunty Bid went up tonight.  Had a good day at the races.

31 August            Very nice day.  Just a keen wind.  Senr went to see doctor with Georgie but Dr Mahon is away so didn’t bother.  Stayed with Nellie all day.  Ena took Maria to doctor and stayed in.   He said he’d like to see it again.  Went up to Aub’s this afternon – the water is still pouring over the spillway.  Stayed for tea, had grilled chops and they came down to the pictures.  Deanna Durbin in 100 Men and a Girl.


1 September       Beautiful day, quite like springtime.  George went in to pay Wright Heatons.  Went along the road this afternoon collecting from the men – they go off this afternoon.  First post just gone up in Nolan’s house down on the old factory ground.  Jim Ward putting up Mrs Taylor’s fence.  Edie and Thellie sweeping the yard.

Germany invaded Poland.

2 September       Waiting for war news.  Expect to hear of war declared.  Riverslea ringing up to get war news.  Their wireless out of order.

3 September       England declared war on Germany.  Holy Name Sunday.  Doll’s birthday.

4 September       Very cold morning.  Barney Palmer gone to work in his own new International truck.  Came over the air this morning that Rowley Ryan knocked old Mr Bateman down on Saturday night.  Broke two legs below the knees.  He is in hospital in a serious condition.  Geo not well so sent Sam Howarth and Noel on the run.

10 September     Winnie moved to Woodstock today.  I went out to see her home.  She has every convenience and will be very comfortable.  Boys brought me home through the Mount and up to the lookout to view the Dam.

11 September     Jim Ward and Sammy Howarth have a job at Aub’s sinking holes for the bowsers.  They are being moved from Aub’s boat site.

12 September     First show day.  Georgie went in to take John.  Not a very nice day, in fact it looks much like rain.  Not making much headway with holes at Aub’s.  Ground very stoney.

13 September     Second day of show.  Edie gone to take Thomas and Anne to the show.  They had a great time.  Thomas a bit scared of the aeroplanes.  Gate takings œ150 short of last year.  Sam Howarth went to the show so Jim had to get Percy Howarth to help him and they are both failures.

14 September     Races today.  Edie and Mrs Ford went in.  I had no inclination to go.  Georgie went to town for chaff for the camps (?) and then on his rounds in the afternoon.  Very nice day.

Bowser man put Sammy off he’s not a good worker – so they took Jim Anderson up to blow the holes.  Mrs Anderson drove them up.  Eric Newham gone to Sydney to bring up another lorry for the road.  He is to bring furniture up for Winnie.

15 September     Today is much nicer than yesterday.  Edie, Dos and Aida to the races.  Hired a taxi, only cost 11/-.  Lost their money of course and Nell Ryan brought them home.  Georgie and I went to the pictures to see Dad and Dave Came to Town and Alexander’s Ragtime Band.

16 September     Quite warm today, everything as usual after show and races.  I had a few punters and only won very little.  Dos and Aida went back to pictures with Tiger.  Georgie had a load too.

17 September     Beautiful day.  Fr O’K. out and Fr Reen brought electricians to put light on pole for the mission.  Georgie leaving his car at garage for repairs – they are lending him one for his run until it is OK.  Men expect to finish bowser holes today.

18 September     Men finished bowser holes at Aubrey’s.  Aub and Thelma called tonight.  They took the mechanic in to the train.  Aunty Bid Ward went to doctor tonight he says high blood pressure and to be very careful – gave her medicine.

19 September     Margaret Cooke came out this morning with Mr Bobbin to stay a while.  She has not been well since they went to Cowra to live so a little holiday here should be good for her.  Went down to see Aunty Bid this afternoon.  She had a day in bed and seems better.  Thelma got permission to cross the wall to school.

20 September     Margaret went to Graham with Georgie today to open the gates – he had a good day there.  C.O’Connor, B.Smart and Smith paid accounts.  The weather is beautiful now.  Read in paper today where Maggie Kearins has a daughter – a few days old, calling it Mary Bernadette.  Talking to Nellie today.  Races this afternoon – had a win.

21 September     Just heard Noel Freebairn’s father died in Sydney.  Georgie has gone to town in the little truck – has Mrs Jim Vaughan, G.Day and Nick Jordan.  I don’t know how he’ll manage to bring goods.  Received new frock from Hordern Bros. not an expensive one and it is a good fit.

22 September     Very nice day.  Had a letter from Jimmy, he is talking of going to the war if he can get an easy job, such as a tank driver.  Margaret is going in with her father this evening to return on Monday and finish her holiday.  Edie and Mrs Ford are up at the church cleaning up for the mission.

23 September     Jim Ward’s birthday – he is 58 years today.

24 September     Mission started today.  Fr Freen.  Speaks loudly and well but somehow does not hold you.

27 September     George is not very well, his throat is sore again.  He stayed home tonight to let his father come to Benediction.

30 September     Epsom Handicap run today and won by Geebung.


1 October            Mission finished today, very good attendance towards the end.  We are all very tired.  Edie especially as she had to go in the afternoon as well as to attend to the altar.  Beautiful weather all thro, only a little rain.  Talking to Jimmy tonight.

2 October            We are lost today, everything seems so quiet after our week of mission.  Weather warming up.  Jack Ward is not well.  Edie rang doctor about him.  He was digging on the road and did not put his coat on after and seems to have caught a chill.  Races at Randwick today.  Feminist won the Metropolitan.

Jack should have gone to work for Murringal Shire today but is not well and thought he’d just take things easy down here this week.  Bryce Marks in bed with measles.

3 October            Quiet today and warmer.  Men still on the road.  There is talk of it closing down.  A great shock to us all.  Apart from giving all hands work we will still have a bad road to travel to Cowra.

4 October            Nothing startling to relate, only the dull old daily life.  Get up and go to bed again seems to be all we do here.  Edie took Jack to the doctor tonight – he has to stay in bed – has a slight touch of pleurisy.  He is very upset as he was to go up to Aub’s this week working for Murringal Shire.

This is our first night without a fire.  Meeting tonight to make arrangements for having the road work continue.  About 30 there – four reporters from Guardian and Leader.  Here’s hoping!

5 October            Change in the weather today, tis like rain.  Charlie is taking a party to Woodstock to see Winnie tonight.  Jack a trifle better.

2 pm.  Raining a little.  Ena and Herbie coming down last night and had a blow out – car ran into some rocks and gave them a bit of a shock.  Baby is not well today.  Ena sent for her mother – she thinks it may be the effect of the accident, but I think tis only her teeth.

5 October            Country Women’s meeting – Jim gone to Weir today.  COR.  Party arrived home from Woodstock at 3 am.  Say they were bogged on the road some time – terrific rain and thunder.  I had to get up at 20 minutes to twelve to put up a shutter.  Jack still very ill.

6 October            Pouring rain, men cannot work.  Water six inches over spillway.

7 October            Fine this morning – men have to work on road to make up for yesterday.  Georgie taking his father in to see Dr Mahon.  Water well over our bridge this morning.  Dib went home this afternoon.

8 October            Fine today but cold.  Archdeacon O’Kennedy out but did not seem real well – had not much to say.  Jimmy did not ring.  Nellie and family out for an hour.

9 October            Very cold again – raining last night.  Dib came out this morning.  Theo Marks has the measles.  Bridge clear again.  Jack still in bed but better.  Georgie in town.  Men are doing wonders on the road now – they are to be finished round here by 20th.

10 October          Beautiful sunny day but a cold wind blowing.  Georgie has not to go to Maryamma today.  Young Webb was in the shop and took the groceries along to Townsends and Paulls.

11 October          Lovely day again, nothing startling.  Men still on the road – working a bit better trying to fix it up before the 20th.  I’m going to pictures tonight to see Four White Sisters and A Girl Must Live – taking Nellie with us.

Home from pictures – midnight.  Brought Aub Toomey with us – half shot – says he is a proud father but I think he was that three times already.  Geo was taking him up to his camp above Aub Murrays.  I went too for company coming back.

12 October          Ordered 3 lbs chops yesterday and did not get them.  Georgie took Aunty Bid into see doctor.  She is OK but he said to come back in a week.  Lovely spring day.  I’ve just written to Jimmy.

15 October          Dib did not go home this weekend.

16 October          Edie and I went to town today – purchased a few things for spare bedroom – doing it up in green.  Jim Ward finished up at Murrays today.  They all came to pictures tonight (All’s Quiet on Western Front).  No one liked it.  Very nice weather, a bit cool if anything.

17 October          Girls spring cleaning today.

23 October          Tommy and Jim started cutting out timber for new post office today.

24 October          Pulling down old post office today and everything in a muddle.  Tess carrying on business on the verandah.  Very nice weather.

25 October          Nice morning but pouring rain this afternoon.  Men cannot work on office.  Mechanics out to put telephone on fresh studs – working under a tarpaulin.

26 October          Beautiful morning and everything going on merrily.  Office almost finished.

27 October          Work as usual – men are very disappointed on the road – they cannot hear if work is to stop today.  Dib got Charlie to take him home thro Woodstock.

28 October          Men at work on roof of office today.  We are still on the verandah.  Tess thinks her mother has the measles.  Guardian tell us this morning work on the road to go on for another month.

29 October          Went to Bathurst for procession today.  Edie, Emilie, Geo, myself, Margaret and Enid Ford.  Called at Dib’s going and coming – had a grand day.  A bit warm if anything.  Met Cooke’s at Dib’s – had been to Dam.

30 October          Wee bit tired today after our trip.  Tom and Jim still working at post office. Tess was going to Bathurst too but her mother has the measles.

31 October          Warm and fair today.


1 November        All Saints’ Day.  Mass this morning – not many there.  Fr O’K threatens us if they do not attend better to cut out holy days and one Sunday.

1 November        Aub rang tonight he is very angry as Jim did not cut his timber.  Percy Ford got a bad turn of nerves this evening – had to be taken to hospital.  Like rain this evening, in fact sprinkling a little.

2 November        All Souls’ Day.  Have been to Mass again.  Georgie and Dib got up at 5 am to do the bills.  Geo went back and had a sleep when they finished.  Jim is cutting Aub’s timber today.  Barney Palmer is taking it up in the morning.  Tom is doing door and windows in post office today.

4 November        Mrs Tarrant’s baby was buried here today – only ten days old.

9 November        George had tonsils removed this morning.  I could not stay in.  They rang me to say Tess had gone home with measles.  So one trouble never comes alone.  I left Edie in to sit with him as Senr. was the only one here and I thought if he was in the office all day he’d be down by night.

11 November      I went to town with Aub tonight to see George.  He is better but throat very sore and he looked tired.  Has had nothing to eat since Wednesday night and sipping iced water.  Gracie Wass was buried today.  A very sad case – leaves a family of ten.

13 November      Beautiful day.  Jim Ward and Co. set off for Mt Collins or Waters place near Bennett Springs to do some sawing.  I’ve been up since 6 am.  Just discovered this is a day early.  Jim left Tuesday morning (13 November).  I went to see George again last night.  He is splendid now but throat still sore.  Edie in bed today with very sore throat and cold.

14 November      Beautiful morning.  I’m still in the post office.  Tess is improving they tell me.  Aunty Bid called to see Edie.  Edie Vaughan is 21 years old today.  Electrician has been here testing our lights.

19 November      Emilie and party came out today and took Georgie to the Weir.  Came back to tea and stayed till about 9 o’clock.  Nellie came with them.  Aub and Thelma down and was talking to Jimmy.

20 November      Tess back at work today.  I don’t know what to do with myself now I’m out of the office.  Raining lightly today.  Went to see Aunty Bid Ward this evening.  Whilst there a storm came up.  We had 85 points of rain and during the night more rain.  Must have had over an inch altogether.  Sent for a lottery ticket and called it Xmas Cheer.  I do hope I win something with it – Dib came down for tea.  Jim Ward and men went back to work tonight.

21 November      Very warm today – Pictures tonight.  Dib came down again, also Aub and Thelma.  Mr White came out and pegged out a culvert at Redbank so we think the road must be going on for a while longer.  We’ve had fires the last two nights – one can hardly believe it to have fires in November.

22 November      Very nice morning and about ten men working here repairing wash outs after the rain.  Georgie improving daily but is not working yet.

23 November      ‘A little surprise for Phil this morning’. [Emilie says this is just an old expression].  Our Inspector arrived – was here two hours and gone on to Wyangala.  Marked his book ‘Office satisfactorily conducted’.  Tom painting our breakfast room today.  Edie Vaughan has left Aunty Bid and going to Delegate with Mrs Rodwell Senr.

One of Jack’s canaries just got out.  Very warm morning.

24 November      Tom still painting. We have great work watching everyone from rubbing against the wall.

25 November      Tom painted till dinner time then went to Cowra.  Emilie came out tonight for weekend.

26 November      Holy Mass – Women’s Sunday. Georgie went to the Weir – Aub wanted the truck to cart timber from his yard down to the river.  They arrived home about 6.45 then had to go to Holy Hour and later Geo took Emilie home.  Aunty Bid and I had our photos taken on the lawn.

27 November      Beautiful morning.  Georgie went to town for goods and Rosie Ford went to hospital with abscess on breast.  Eileen went too to mind baby. Dr says she can come out in a day or so.  Edie, Jack and Georgie went to Woodstock.  Jack went to see Mr Rowlands and Edie stayed with Winnie.  Dib was down for tea.  It has got quite cool this evening.  Tom finished breakfast room and is now painting front of shop.  Mr and Mrs Nolan went to Bigga for a week.

28 November      Quite cold this morning – I’m back in my wool cardigan.  Jim Ward if fixing COR sign.  Sam Eggleston brought Aida home from Orange last night – left Peter here too.

29 November      Tom M. is finished painting here and gone to Herb Wass’s to build a meat room.  I’m still in my wool cardigan and we are having fires at night.  Went to see ‘Sixty Glorious Years’ tonight.  It was beautiful and all colored.  Nellie promised to go to house party but came with us instead.  Margaret in bed with headache and Anne not too good either.

30 November      Very cold wind.  Tom M. finished at Wass’s today.  We expected the Bank Inspector but he just called and said he may come back tomorrow.  Wrote to Alice re selecting my electric cleaner.  Nolans returned this evening.  Mrs Nolan is not very well.


1 December        Still a very cold wind blowing.  Ena and Herb down early.  Herbie going to town.  Georgie also gone in to pay our account at Wright Heatons.  Emilie Henderson is 21 years old today.

2 December        Races today.  I did not win much.  My good punters are all gone now from the road.

3 December        Mass this morning.  Fr Reen but no Benediction.

4 December        Dreadful dusty windy day.  I’ve been very off color lying about all day.  Got a chill last night when going to bed – had to get up and put warm nighty on.  Jim Ward came home again tonight – something wrong with the engine.

5 December        Calm this morning – sent Georgie to Woodstock for Winnie and her mother.  Children were very excited to get back.  Everything new we had since she left she pointed out.  Joan had a great game with her playmates here.  Mrs McGuinness was going to see Aunty Bid Ward but it came up like rain so she did not go – went to see Aunty Nick.

6 December        Very nice day. Races this arvo.  I won a little.  Tonight I went up and spent a few hours with Aubrey – he is building a kiosk just near his house and intends keeping everything for convenience of tourists.  They had boiled fowl for tea and altho I had a stewed chop before I left I managed to put away 2 plates of soup and before we left at 11 pm we had toasted sandwiches.

7 December        Very warm again.  Country meeting (Women’s).  Edie forgot and went to wish Dos a happy birthday but Nell Ryan went down and brought her up.  Nell came down after meeting and had a gossip.  Also brought a lovely vase to be presented to Winnie.  We had no fire tonight and out landed Emilie and her brothers and Joyce [Seabrook, married Keith Henderson].  Stayed and had a cup of tea.

8 December        Lovely day – not a bit hot.  Georgie went to town and brought a load of oil and cement for Aubrey took it up after tea.

11 December      Tom started to pull down chimney in kitchen. Dreadful mess out there.  Edie cleaning bricks for a no sale – 50 I think.  Very windy and dusty.

12 December      Chimney going well considering Tom has not built one before.  Public meeting at the hall tonight – arrange do something for our soldiers.  Pouring rain tonight only Country Women at meeting and Rowley Ryan – Ray Oliver – Geo. – Tom Whitty – Tom Kendon and Mr Rodwell.  Having a ball New Year’s night.  George and Phylis Kindon joint secretaries.

13 December      Raining earlier this morning and much cooler – had visit from traveller for British products.

14 December      Chimney well up today – almost to shoulders.  Georgie left his car in town to be painted.  Received two lottery tickets today (me and dad).  Meaning George and his father and birthday syndicate myself, Eileen, Aunty Bid Ward, Twins and Edie.  We are hoping for a win at Christmas.

15 December      Still beautifully cool but expect to get much warmer during the day, tis only 8.15 am.

22 December      Tom finished up chimney and painting kitchen today – looks beautiful too.  Girls are still cleaning up for Xmas.  Jimmy came home tonight.

23 December      All hands gone to town to see Santa.

24 December      Fr O’K out for Mass this morning.  Jimmy took me up to Aub’s for tea – arrived home at about 10 pm.

25 December      Christmas day and not too hot to enjoy our dinner.  Georgie went camping with his friends to the Weir.  Nellie out this afternoon.  Stayed for tea and went on to Neville’s after.  Mrs Eric Newham’s mother (Mrs Ridley) died this morning.

26 December      Had a quiet day.  Georgie did not get home till tea time and Jimmy took me to see Ice Follies of 1939 – it was lovely.

27 December      Jimmy and Tom went to town brought Fanny and Emilie out to Clive Oliver’s send off.  A very nice turn out – quite a lot of people there and some finished the evening with The Old Grey Mare Aint What She Used to Be.  Neville and Winnie out – Nev past his test today for wireless operator.  Jack returned from Sydney and went to work at Burley Jackey.

28 December      Win went home with Kirkman – Dib in Mail – Lois Marks went in for a few days.  Georgie had to do Graham trip today – a day late owing to holidays.  Margaret Cooke has been out since Xmas afternoon.

29 December      Very hot the last few days.  We are hoping for a cool change.  Georgie gone to town for goods from Sydney.  Jim Ward still working away.

30 December      Jimmy went to Sydney to finish his holiday.

31 December      New Year’s Eve and very hot.  I had tea up at Aub’s.  Jimmy, Fanny and myelf came home about 9.30 pm.  George at Weir camping with friend.


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