Margaret Harris’ Diary – 1945




1 January          Very hot day.  Went to Mass 8.30 am.  Win went to Sydney to see her mother.  We are  minding the children.  Jimmy rang up and is very well.  Spent the arvo at Bondi.  Win had letter from Dib.  Cool change tonight.

Geo and Em took Win to train and went to pictures.  Mrs Henderson came out.  Janet Mary toddling but very shaky.

2 January          Much cooler this morn.  I am doing Form 100.  Glad the holidays are over.  Noni Ford’s [Matheson] baby born 3l December 1944.

11 January        Lovely rain falling and very muggy, we’ve had 50 pts in two days.  Graham had 4 inches in a short time – Creek out over banks.  Win still in Sydney.

12 January        Cool day and very cool night.  Cricketers dance on – not much of a success.  Nellie came out to play.

13 January        Very much like rain today.  Races at Rosehill – I won a little.  Violet [Howarth] went to town bought my slippers.  Win arrived from Sydney after 10 days.  Raining tonight.

14 January        Rained all night, lovely steady rain.  I think drought is broken.  Very like it again now.  I’ve been to Mass – had Mass said for Frank.  Eclipse of the sun at 3.30.

15 January        Very hot today, thought we’d have a storm.  Em has taken the children to her mothers.  She is leaving them there while she has her holiday.  Margaret Cooke came back with George for a while.  Tom Evans passed away – buried Cowra 3 pm 16 January.  George cut about 2 ton of wood up today.

16 January        Very muggy today.  Winnie working in shop – George gone to Graham.

17 January        Very sick with cold – went to bed in the afternoon.  Slight attack of Bronchitis.

18 January        Very warm again.  Went to see Aunt Bid Ward – she seems very well.  Emilie came home to pack her ports.

19 January        Very warm again.  I’m going to town to see Dr Mahon before he leaves.  He is selling his practice and going to Wagga.  Home from town – Dr says pressure high and gave new different tablets.  Going back to him in a week.  George and Em left for Sydney at 4.30.  Win went to Ford’s to play cards.

20 January        Very hot morning – tis about 8.30 and all the work finished.  Races at Randwick.

21 January        Very hot day.  Hovells Creek cricketers here.  They did not take the cup.  They got 50, Darbys 203.  We sold nearly seven cases drink – Aub and Tilly were down.  Fr Casey out for Mass.

22 January        Windy and dusty this morn – we are hoping for a storm.  Maggie washed.  Win cleaned up.  I wrote to Neville.  Jack and Jim went back to work.

23 January        Very hot again, no sign of rain.  Last night was hottest we’ve had.  Sent for Brandy for Aunt Bid by Tom Howarth.

Next entry:

30 January        110 points rain last night – such a change.  We are back in cardigans.


1 February        Janet Mary 12 months old today.

3 February        Em and Geo landed back from Sydney today – the kiddies seem pleased to be home.

4 February        Fr Gallagher back.  Said Mass this morning.  He is relieving Fr Casey.  Staying with Mrs Ray.

5 February        Winnie and children left for home today.  Place seems very quiet after them.  Very hot and no wind and no water in our tank.

6 February        Aunty Mary Ryan just taken to hospital.  She has a very bad throat.  Nora Ford has opened an account in our bank for her small son, Michael.  Very hot again today.  Had a wire from Win she arrived home OK.  Geo gone to Graham – first trip after holiday.

7 February        Beautifully cool this morning.  Aunty Bid slept here – no one up at Burrilda [Bid & Nick Markham’s place].

10 February      Nora Howarth’s baby daughter born today.

11 February      Rain this afternoon – very heavy while it lasted – heavier all round.  At Mt McDonald they had 79 points in 10 minutes.

12 February      Lois Marks left for the convent today for school.  Fanny Gallagher son born today.  [Fanny married Tom Millist of Selby Shoes].

13 February      Very cool change today.  Ena gone to town – thinks she may not return for a couple of weeks.

14 February      Ena’s son born this morning.  Calling him Patrick I think.

15 February      Rang Jimmy at Parkes – he is well and likes his job.  Em and children went to town to see Ena and baby.

16 February      Warmer today.  Nellie rang up to say she went to doctor.  She has low blood pressure and needs a tonic.  She is giving up playing for dances.

17 February      Very muggy this morning and like a change.  Norah Howarth home today with little daughter.

18 February      Mass this morn – Fr Gallagher still here staying at Mrs Ray’s.  Till and Aub came down for tea.  80 pts. rain for Sat. and Sunday.

19 February      Chrissie Howarth went back to Melbourne and Theo Marks came home again – he was about 8 days.

20 February      George at Graham.  Cannot cross the creek to the house, there has been such heavy rain.  Storms all round in the night but we didn’t get any rain out of it.  Went down to see Aunty Bid Ward – she is very well.

21 February      Very muggy this morning.  Maggie did not come down today – has a bad back.  Dust storm this arvo but no rain – it has cleared up again.

22 February      Very hot morning.  Finished Form 100 and sent away.  Speaking to Nellie.  She is on her second bottle of tonic.

23 February      Still very hot – no rain.  Ena coming home today with new baby,  called him Denis Patrick.  Edie is godmother.

24 February      Very quiet and hot.  Aunty Bid Ward not so good – Edie and Jack went to town.  Aub and Till down to the races.

25 February      Very hot.  Boorowa playing Darbys for the cup.  Aub made me go up and it was very exciting and Darbys still have the cup.  Speaking to Jimmy from Parkes.

1 March               Went to pictures tonight to see Cover Girl – very nice bright picture.

2 March               Warming up again.  Fr Gallagher came back today.  Tom Jordan with him.

6 March               Emilie and children went to town tonight – they’re staying one week.  Only George and myself at home.

7 March               Talking to Jimmy from Parkes – he is very well.

8 March               Mailman brought bottle Brandy for Aunty Bid – took it down after tea.

9 March               Aunty Bid Ward very ill – Neville, Lil and Tot arrived this morning and Jock coming tomorrow.  Nights and mornings very cool – we have extra bedclothes.  Beryl rang me to ask after her mum.  Edie and Jack going to Orange – Jack to have eye treated – they are taking Nellie with them.

17 March             Hazel Fogg married today to Cyril Howarth.  Reception in Hall.  Marriage in Cowra.  Jimmy came from Parkes for weekend and brought Nellie out – Jack and Edie at Orange.

18 March             Second grade cricket team went to Boorowa and got a good licking, but enjoyed the day.  Nellie, Jimmy left about 9 pm for home.

19 March             Roasting hot today.  George gone to Cowra.  I wrote to Dibby.

30 March             103 pts rain today.

31 March             Doncaster Races  today at Randwick


2 April                  I won œ50 today on all up bet – œ1 Cold Shower all Craigie.  Trains running daily from today.

3 April                  Nora Howarth baby taken to Dr today – he thinks she has scarlet fever so she is in isolation.

7 April                  Rain started today is very cold too.

8 April                  Still raining.  Went to Mass.  Fr Masterton out, has been holidaying.

9 April                  Raining still.  George went to town brought Murray Cooke out with him.  Violet left for her holidays so I am very busy in PO.

10 April                Murray Cooke is 18 years today.  Georgie going to Graham.  Fred Hudson is fixing top of his truck cover – Murray [Cooke] just got his call up to be in Sydney on 17th.  Maggie [Fogg] asked me to ring Harold Oliver to see if it was safe for Bill to work with him in 100 acre paddock.  Kids have scarlet fever.

11 April                Beautiful day.  I got parcel of house linen from David Jones.  Inspector Pearson on his way here.  Em and George going out for mushrooms.

17 April                Jack and Edie went to Parkes this morning or Forbes I mean.  Tis Jimmy’s birthday.

19 April                Had eighty points rain this arvo in about half an hour – water racing everywhere – ran down back of Aunty Bid Nick’s and into Syd Newham’s.  Jack and Edie returned from Forbes – did not see Jimmy.

20 April                Em and George went to town this morn taking Janet for her third injection.

21 April                Beautiful morning.  Violet coming back today – I’ve been in PO for two weeks.  Got in a big load of wood today – cost œ7.

26 April                Mrs Tom Whitty in hospital with Asthma and Bronchitis.  Pat and Aida back from Sydney.

27 April                Noel Newham home today after 12 months away.  Aunty Mary Ryan went to see Dr today – has very bad throat.

29 April                Aub’s birthday – we had turkey for dinner.

30 April                Julie Ford had operation today for Tonsilitis and adenoids – is doing very well.


1 May                  Mrs Elvins went to hospital today.  Fr Gallagher came to tea – Em cooked fowl, it was a bit tough but I think he enjoyed it OK.

2 May                  News over wireless today – Hitler is dead.  Lots of lads going to Lyndhurst to dance.  Violet bought Eileen Medway’s fur coat.

3 May                  Good news again.  Italy and Austria have surrendered unconditionally and Berlin has fallen.  Junior is getting his hair cut – I think they can hear him in Cowra.

8 May                  Hostilities ceased in Europe.  Emilie taken to hospital with scarlet fever.  [Emilie caught scarlet fever from Norah Howarth amd was in hospital for about a month].  A few girls and boys called in to celebrate peace.  Some stayed till 3 am.  Geo gone to Graham.  Nellie came out with Jack and Edie.

9 May                  Public holiday today.  Same as Good Friday – had a very quiet day.  Geo went to town tonight – taking Janet’s cot.  She will be with Mrs Henderson till Em comes home.  Ross and Lois Marks home from school.

10 May                Very cold and like rain again.  Thelma rang me to go to Sydney with them on Friday but as Em is away I cannot go – besides tis too cold.  Had letter from Murray today, also Dibby.  Fr Gallagher gone home today – Ray went with him.

13 May                Jimmy rang tonight for Mother’s day.  He is well but I have a bad cold.  Mass this morn.

14 May                Very nice day.  Aub rang from Sydney for mother’s day – he and Thelma sound in good spirits.  Aub seeing specialist Wednesday about his condition generally and Friday a little operation on hip.

15 May                Very cold this morn.  My cold is much better – Maggie has turned me down on account Scarlet Fever.  Nellie came out this morn to help me.

17 May                Nellie went home this morn and Anne came out to stay a few days.

19 May                Aub and Thelma came home from Sydney.  Aub had his nose and hip attended to at Price Alfred.

20 May                Aub and Till went home tonight.  Thelma worked and made a cake for me.

21 May                Mrs Anthony had a heart attack tonight.  Dr and priest out and they took her to hospital.  She is always saying she’s sick and no one takes much notice of her – so we all got a shock and Syd Newham went to hospital too – a very bad cold but they are both improving.  A beautiful day.

22 May                Maggie came back to work this morning thank God – another lovely day.  Just about to do Form 100.  Eileen’s [Markham] birthday.

26 May                Jack returned from Sydney today.  Has been away at a school.  Thelma and Aub went to Cowra.  Aub had stitches taken out of hip – stayed here night.

27 May                Aunty Bid and Aunty Mary went up to Ena’s for a few weeks – a change for Aunty Mary.  Darcy Ryan down.

28 May                Jack and Edie went to town – did not get home till midnight.

30 May                Edie and Jack went to Mandurama.  Dos went with them for the drive.  Its a lovely day.  Mrs Glover rang up – her son Neil walked in on her this morning from Canada.


1 June               My birthday – 68 years – and I feel very well Thank God.

6 June               Edie went to Canowindra races with Nell and Norm.

8 June               Uncle Bill [Markham, brother] had very bad heart turn.  Dr thinks tis beginning of the end – he looks very bad.

9 June               Noel Newham went back to camp today.  [Noel spent most of his time in the army in Perth.  Married a Perth girl and stayed there after the war].

10 June             Went to town to see Bill this arvo.  He is a little improved.

12 June             Started to rain tonight.  George was at Graham today, lucky to get home before the rain.

13 June             Mavis Whitty has little daughter 3 am.  Both well.  Still raining – rained all night.  Hilton Wass called this morning, he is buying skins.  1-1/2 inches rain last night or I should say 1 inch and 5 points.

14 June             Junior [George Harris III] three years old today.  Em gave kids a little party.

16 June             Races today – I won a bit.

17 June             Mass this morn – Fr Casey.  George got a young turkey from Jenny for him – he is 25 years ordained priest.

18 June             I went in to see Uncle Bill – he is very bad.  Geo, Oliver [Markham] and Bryce [Marks] went to see a horror film – I did not go.

19 June             Bill no better – they got a bed in hospital for him today.  Una [Jordan] says he seems better.  Dib rang me from Sydney today – he has to go back to Melbourne and expects leave from 28 June.

20 June             Dib rang up from GPO today – he seems very well.  Says he will be on leave about 28 June.  Suzanne Ryan started to school today in the bus.  Nell Oak [Markham] rang up about Uncle Bill – he seems a bit better.

21 June             Uncle Bill passed away in hospital 1.30 this morning.  Altho we knew he could not live long it was sudden in the end.  None of us with him.  John Cooke’s birthday – 11 years old.  Bill taken to church.  Eileen and I went down and said the Rosary.  I had dinner with Nellie.  Raining all the time.

22 June             Bill buried at 11 am.  It poured raining.  Our car stopped on the way in and Tom Whitty took me on in to town. I just got to the church as Fr started to say the prayers.  Still raining when we got home at 2 o’clock.  Bill buried next to Iris Puttock [his daughter] in Cowra.

23 June             Weather cleared up a bit.  Aub and Thelma came down this afternoon.

24 June             Fr Masterton out.  Nice day – he did not stay for Benediction as he had to go back thro Cowra to Woodstock.  Edie had a game of tennis – first in six years.

25 June             Fine day again but cold wind.  Maggie back at work and washed today.  Dam is slowly rising.

26 June             Beautiful morning – really mild for mid winter.  George has gone to Graham.

27 June             George gone to Cowra to get his truck fixed.  Rained again last night and bitterly cold today.  Just wrote to Winnie, re-addressed some letters to Murray at Adelaide.  Got wire from Dib from Melbourne – he is leaving for Canberra Friday.  Maggie did not come to work.

28 June             Cold miserable morning – no sunshine.  Wriggle [Jim Ward] stayed with us last night.  Maggie at work this morning.

30 June             Talking to Neville at Canberra – he thinks he’ll be over this weekend.  Thelma in bed with bad back.  Aunty Bid Nick home.


1 July                Lovely day.  Mass this morning.  Aub did not come down.  Tillie is still in bed.  Em went up to play tennis.  I had a quiet afternoon – talking to Jimmy tonight.

2 July                Lovely spring day.  Wrote to Dib.

3 July                George gone to Graham – little Geo won’t go, says too cold.  Edie went to town.  Violet gone too to get her hair done so I’m postmistress.  Raining down south at present and very cold.  This should have been written on 5th – I can’t see straight.

5 July                John Curtin Prime Minister died at 4 am this morning.

6 July                John Curtin’s body taken to Perth today.  Dib and Win arrived from Canberra.  Raining again this afternoon.  Just got another œ7 load of wood.  Truck turned over in the yard.  Jimmy arrived tonight.

7 July                Dance tonight for Hall funds – nice turnout.  Aub and I played.

8 July                Mass this morning.  Very nice day.  Darbys beat Cannery at Tennis, also beat Wyangala Dam.  We had a nice party at night for Dib – over 40 people here.

9 July                Jimmy, Nellie and Jack left for their homes after dinner.  Nice day.

10 July              George went to Graham, did not leave till about 11 am.  Em and kids went with them.  Jim minding shop.  Win and I got the dinner.  Aub came down to say goodbye to Dib and Win.

11 July              Dib and Win went home today on the 5.18 train from Cowra.  I went in with them.  Feel lonely after them.  Got home at tea time.

12 July              Raining today only lightly but cold.

13 July              Raining still.  George paid Mr Howarth for cow.

14 July              Neville rang up tonight – he is very well.  Has another fortnight yet before he goes back to his boat.

15 July              Went to town with Thelma and Aub.  There was a tennis match – Darbys and Presbytery.  Darbys won – it was very cold.  I stayed with Nellie.  Marg. went to Canowindra playing basketball.

16 July              Very cold wind today from south.  Maggie washing.  Annie Anthony came to see me – she is a Warrant Officer – left today for camp.  Has to be home Friday.  Sent for 5 cases of oranges to Griffith.

17 July              Beautiful day.  George gone to Graham – Jim in shop.  Mrs Anthony gone to Galong again.

20 July              Maggie having her teeth out.  Haddon Coward announced his engagement. [To Jean Caldwell, sister of Una who was Les Oliver’s first wife].

21 July              New lino for Post Office and bathroom.

23 July              Very heavy frost.

24 July              Cleaned up PO till 9.30 pm ready for new lino.

25 July              George and Clarrie [Markham] put down new lino in PO.

27 July              Went to Orange to see Oakey [Jim Markham, brother] – he is splendid.  Beautiful day.  Em George kids and myself.  We took Dos over.  Saw Cecil [Markham, brother] and family – got home at 10.30.

28 July              Ladies to Woodstock to CWA Conference.  Had a pleasant afternoon they say.  Races here.

29 July              Fr Casey out today 9.30 Mass.  Till and Aub down.  Tennis match won on town courts but lost at Hill court.

30 July              Very heavy fog this morn but lovely afternoon.  Emilie washed.

31 July              Raining and very cold.  Georgie went to Graham.


1 August            Wire from Dib.  Everything fixed up for exchange on boat – he is going back to Canberra Monday.  Letter from Murray – he is at Point Cook, Melbourne.  Aunt Mary Markham’s birthday – 80 years.  She got two cakes and a call on the air from Young.

2 August            Rained lightly all the morning.  George went to town this arvo.  Rang Jimmy and Nellie to tell them of Dib’s good luck.

5 August            Fr Casey out and had a joke on George.  Said he wanted him to take him round by Woodstock just as Geo was ready to take tennis players to town – I went with Aub and spent day with Nellie.

6 August            Emilie washed – a fine day – Maggie was coming but couldn’t leave Betty.

7 August            Rained last night – not bad now at 1 pm.  Georgie at Graham.

8 August            Ladies holding meeting to make arrangements for Catholic Ball.  Decided to hold it Sept. 21 and Juvenile 22nd.  Fr Masterton out.

9 August            About 12 of us going in to see Song of Bernadette in George’s truck.  A beautiful picture.  We all had a bit of a weep.

10 August          Tiger rang bells at 11 pm – Japs have surrendered.

12 August          9.30 Mass this morn – Fr Casey.

15 August          Feast of the Assumption.  Mass this morn.  Lal’s birthday and just as Mass was over George rang the bells to let us know Mr Chifley put it over the air peace was declared.  We celebrated and had a sing song in the hall – all Darbys was there.  Holiday today.

16 August          Public holiday again today.

17 August          I was sick in bed today with Bronchitis – Em gave me two flowing tablespoons [? castor oil].

18 August          Dance tonight.  I was to play but Nellie came out and took my place.  She and Aub played till 2 am – got 35/- each.

19 August          Mass at 9.30 am – Fr Casey.  Aub and Till down – Em and George went to Lyndhurst with Jack and Joan Whitty.  Tennis match on here.  Darbys beat Hill court.

20 August          Not a very nice morning.  Em was too tired to wash but twas very cold.

21 August          Nice day – Tarrants got Tiger to take them to town so when they were not home at 8 pm Bryce [Marks] and Georgie went after them.  They were stuck up at Military camp – it was quarter to one when George got back after being at Graham all day.

22 August          Emilie started to wash and the rain came down again.  Some of the things partly dry but has been raining all the afternoon.  Mr Coward went to Sydney – called down urgently – his mother very ill.  5.30 and still raining.  Eileen Callaghan had son 7 pm.

23 August          Lovely morning rain seems to have cleared away.  Em and George went to town.

24 August          Beautiful day.  Ena gone to town to have her hair permed.

25 August          Edie went away today – going to Boorowa to Maisie’s [Rochefort,Smart].  Races Randwick.  One punter backed Shannon and stung me.  Thelma’s visitors arrived from Sydney.

26 August          Women’s Sunday – Fr Masterton out.  Aub and Till and three boys down for dinner.  Stayed till 10 pm.

27 August          Not a nice day.  Emilie washed but showery.  Fr Gallagher arrived from Katoomba, brought Clare Jordan and Michael her son.

28 August          Much brighter day – no rain.  George went to Graham.  Jim in shop.

31 August          Bitterly cold today.  Got a pleasant surprise this morn.  The piano tuner arrived.  I’ve been ringing up for days trying to get him – he is tuning my piano now.


1 September     Races today.  I had a little win.

2 September     Fr Gallagher said Mass then went to Woodstock.  Darbys played Lyndhurst tennis and beat them.  Lovely day.

3 September     Very windy this morning – Emilie washing.

4 September     Had a party for 21 visiting children all home from school.  They had a wonderful time – went home at midnight.

5 September     Fr Gallagher gone to Cowra to say Mass in morning – going to Katoomba.  Marie Elliott and Clare Jordan going with him.

7 September     Nell Ryan in with Nellie – they are going to Ball at Goolagong tonight.  Em busy making fancy dress for Jan and Junior.

8 September     Fr Masterton brought five nuns out with him and took them on to see Wyangala Dam.

11 September   First show day – beautiful day.

12 September   Second day of show – Em and George took kids.  Lovely day again.  I think everone went but me.

13 September   Cowra Races.  I did not go.  Lovely day again.  Herb Wass, Eric [Ward] and Thellie [Waters] went in.

14 September   Second day of Races – Cowra Cup won by Zain.  I had an enjoyable day.  Came home winning couple of pounds – went to pictures to see Sudan – very nice picture.  Home about 12.30 pm.15 September  Saturday Races here.  I had a win again.  Thelma [Murray] sent her nephews home tonight.  Margaret Cooke out for weekend.  Heard of Ken Oliver.  [Ken was in a Japanese prisoner of war camp:  was 6 stone  5 lbs when released].

16 September   Fr Casey out – Darbys played Hill team tennis – gave them good beating.

17 September   Rang Mrs Oliver this morning.  She is very excited about Ken – and no wonder after 4 years in prison camp.

18 September   Baby daughter born to Neail Oliver – Edie came home tonight not very well.  Staying with Lal tonight.  Georgie at Graham. Talking to Dib tonight.  Jim went to town today to fix up business with Nell Ryan.

19 September   Very nice morning but looking like rain this evening.

20 September   Geo and Em went to town – she went to get her hair set.  Murray Cooke came out with them.  We are all busy with pressing tongues and cooking hams for Ball Friday night.

21 September   Very nice morning we are hoping.



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