Family Names

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Five Faves Geneameme

Image created by Jill Ball as part of the Five Faves Geneameme, 2017 access 29 May 2017, http://geniaus.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/five-faves-geneameme.html
This post is part of “Five Faves Geneameme “  initiated by GeniAus  after being inspired by a GSQ Blogpost by Meg Carney 

To participate in this meme simply pen a blog post sharing details of five books written by others you have found most useful in your geneactivities.

Below is my contribution revolving around books I have used to give me a great understanding of the Victoria Era of History in both England and Australia.

Context in England
  • ·         Researching English Education & Health Records by Penelope Christensen  - This little book has been a gem; it has a wealth of information.  I had located Martha’s educational records but no-one had been able to tell me what they meant. This book also gives hints on where to find records concerning health records where and how to find them.
  • ·         Daily Life in Victorian England by Sally Mitchell - This book gives broad stroke overviews of English life, with an extensive further reading list at the back that helped me to find Ruth Goodman’s book How to be a Victorian, which I love.
  • ·         Good Food, Bright Fires & Civility – British Emigrant Depots of the 19th Century by Keith Pescod. - This book gives a lot of details about the depots and what our ancestors would have experienced as they waited to leave.  Well written and very informative.

Context in Australia
  • ·         My Wife, My Daughter and Poor Mary Ann by Beverley Kingston – I love this book and am constantly dipping into for further understanding.  It was recommended to me after I had posted a query concerning the mention of “Mary Ann” in several newspaper articles of the time.  FYI “Mary Ann” is slang for servant.
  • ·         Paupers, poor relief and poor houses in Western Australia, 1829-1910. By Penelope  Hetherington – I found the information in the book very useful and use it as a reference to dip into when I’m trying to understand attitudes during this period in WA.


I am currently trying to write a novella about my great-grandmother Martha Sarah Ellis born in 1870 in England, and the above books represent some of the interesting source material that I have found.

The kernel of my story yet to be written
Martha began life in 1870 during the Victorian Era in England. Her destiny would have been one of continual servitude either as a servant for a family or as an unpaid domestic for her father and stepmother if she had stayed.  In 1889 she journeyed to Australia on a ‘Bride Ship’ in search of a better life. On arrival in The Colonies she was faced with a whole new set of challenges. This is her story as she pushes back against the expectations and social mores to create a new life for herself.  

I’m always on the lookout for more good titles, you can never know too much.



1 comment:

  1. Thanks Sandra. I have another of Penelope Christensen's which I find most useful. Must look out for other titles.

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