I collect Victorian diaries and journals, written mainly by women who have arrived in Australia after leaving England, but also by women born in colonial Australia. These diaries are brilliant when I’m writing a story set in colonial Australia and they give me an insight to how they lived and what was happening in the world around them at that time. From their personal entries, we can learn what was important to them, their daily routine, their views and opinions. They can also lift some of those myths we in the modern world tend to think as true.
Below are some pages from a selected few of my diaries, which may show why I adore them so much.
This page is from The Letters of Rachel Henning. A genteel lady who left England and ventured to Colonial Australia to join her brother who was farming out there. It’s a fascinating account of her life and full of details about those times.
I also have a few diaries, or collections of letters written during the First World War, which is another favourite era for me to write.
Below is an example from the book, Unknown Warriors, The Letters of Kate Luard, RRC and BAR Nursing Sister in France 1914-1918.
Kate Luard is one of those unsung heroines of the war. A dedicated nursing sister who went to the front line to give aid to the wounded. Her letters are fascinating, harrowing, tragic but filled with such devotion and commitment.
Below is a page from The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady. A lovely diary of a naturalist’s world in 1906 written by English lady, Edith Holden.
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