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Australian Women's History
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Australian Women's History
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Australian Women's History

This page created 24 July 1998
Updated 1 April 2008

 See new women's history Links added below

Trying to discover information about our Australian women ancestors is a difficult task. They were seldom listed in Post Office Directories, they didn't appear on most Electoral Rolls until after Federation, and they tended to get left out of history books.  My interest in this area led me to try in my own small way to redress the balance.

Searching for Mary Ann:  Researching Women in Australia
This book aims to present a list of published material containing the names of women, and guides to archival material including information about women.  Information is presented on a State by State basis, and encourages a systematic approach to seeking material about our female ancestors.  For details about how to obtain a copy of the book, go to Lenore Frost's Virtual Bookshop.

 The Victorian Tailoresses' Strike, 1882-83
While researching material to include in Searching for Mary Ann , I looked particularly for published information about women in unions.  Although I didn't actually find anything, I did come across many references to the Melbourne Tailoresses' Strike of 1882-83.  The references, however, tended to be fleeting, and did not satisfy my desire to know more about the women who led the strike.  This prompted me to begin researching the incident myself, and I was intrigued by the events as they unfolded in the Melbourne daily newspapers of the day.  I found that membership records of the union, and the Strike Book were archived in the Butlin Archives, Australian National University - and no true genie would leave a list of names untouched!  I am therefore also preparing an index to the Membership Roll and Strike Book of the Victorian Tailoresses' Union.  This is still a Work in Progress .

 Australian Women's Work Exhibition, 1907
Again, while looking for sources containing Australian women's names for Searching for Mary Ann, my attention was directed to a microfiche publication from the State Library of Victoria, containing the program and catalogue of the exhibition.  These fiche contained thousands of names of Australian women who entered exhibits in the competitive and non-competitive sections of the Exhibition, which was held in Melbourne.  Unfortunately it did not have an accompanying index, and I felt that an index would be well worthwhile to enable researchers to properly extract information from the State Library fiche.  The index to the names in the Work Exhibition has now been published on microfiche.  For further details see Lenore Frost's Virtual Bookshop .

Links to Australian Women's

History Sites

Convict Women 1788-1828
Convict Women and Sexual Subjugation in 19th century Australia
Disrupting the Boundaries: Resistance and Convict Women
Female Convict Factories, Tasmania
Female Factory Research Group 

Irene Schaffer' Website  Various indexes relating to convict women, and other interesting stuff!
Ladies of the 'Royal Admiral'
Ross Female Factory, Tasmania
Women Convicts on Governor Hunter's Assignment Report 1798

1891 Women's Suffrage Petition to the Victorian Parliament  Index  
Australian Service Nurses National Memorial
Australian Open Women's Championship 

Australian Women's Archive Project 

Australian Women's Art Register
Australian Women's History Forum 
Beyond the Picket Fence:  Australian Women's Art in the National Library's Collections  
Disrupting the Boundaries: Resistance and Convict Women
Even Pioneer Women Get the Blues
First Women: finding women in the Public Record Office Victoria 

Famine Orphans from County Cork to Australia
First Register of Midwives in Western Australia 
Gender: Women's Place in Australian History and Society 
Involvement of Women in Unions
Links to online resources for women's history
Little Lonsdale St Dig   
National Pioneer Women's Hall of Fame
Records of the Women's Electoral Lobby
Royal Hibernian Military School - Girls shipped to Melbourne 1849 via SS Pemberton
Royal Women's Hospital Melbourne,  lying-in records from 1856-1879, digitised. 

Sex, Class and the road to Women's Suffrage
Victorian Nurses in the Boer War
Western Australian Women's Roll of Honour
Women and Politics in South Australia
Women in Focus
Women in Australian Working History 
Women in the Political Arena: Australian Electoral Commission
Women in Unions 

Women Lecturers in Melbourne, Australia, 1880-1905 - by Helen Doxford Harris, OAM
Women of the Bounty
Women of Vision- 1838-1918    Index of Roman Catholic Nuns and Sisters in  Australia
Women's Christian Temperance Union 
Women's Cricket Tasmania - history
Women's Sites  

Links checked 1 June 2005