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Latitude = -23.7032
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Lat: 23 degrees, 42.2 minutes South
Long: 133 degrees, 52.6 minutes East
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OPENING TIMES:

February to December:
Open daily
 10.00 am to 5.00 pm- Monday to Friday

 10.00 am to 4.00 pm- Saturday & Sunday

Closed:
21st December 2013 to 3rd February 2014

COST OF ENTRY
$7.00 per adult
$5.50 Consession (senior)
$3.00 Children
$18.00 per Family (2Adults, up to 3 children)


Network of Women's Museums
Women at the Heart | First in their Field | Women's Work

Exhibition - "Women on the land"

Women from many backgrounds came to pastoral properties as wives, governesses, cooks, housemaids and drovers, often extending their skills to become slaughterers, shearers, fence builders and horticulturalists.

CATTLE WOMEN

Mary Hayes, William and their children came to Central Australia in 1884, to work as fencing and dam sinking contractors on Mount Burrell and Owen Springs stations. Horse and bullock teams carried their equipment and belongings. They also brought steel telegraph poles to replace the wooden poles of the Overland Telegraph Line.

They had a nomadic life. Mary persuaded William to settle down and they leased Deep Well Station, later purchasing Mount Burrell, followed by Undoolya and Owen Springs. Mary and her daughters, Mary and Elizabeth, did their full share of mustering, branding, droving, slaughtering and fence building.

When driving a flock of 1000 sheep over 560km to Mount Burrell . . .‘a big rain was encountered on the tablelands and immense trouble resulted from the sheep getting bogged. Mary lost her boots but all the sheep were brought home in tact.’

GOVERNESSES
Gertie Elliott was governess to her cousin Jane Hayes’ children. Correspondence lessons and books were sent by camel from South Australia. She later married Jim Turner of The Garden Station. The policeman Mr Stott was their marriage celebrant at Undoolya Station on 22 January 1927.

SHEARERS
Pearl Price tries her hand at shearing the family pet sheep, with hand shears, on Harpers Springs Station. Long sleeves and a hat were worn for protection against the hot sun. Pearl later settled on Bushy Park with her husband Jim Bird and continued to do her share of shearing, as well as providing meals and smoko for all the shearers.

‘Mrs Ross...brightened the house with huge jars of gumtips’.
‘Mrs Ross...brightened the house with huge jars of gumtips’. Doris Blackwell, Douglas Lockwood, Alice on the Line.

One of Fanny’s children, Mary riding side saddle.
One of Fanny’s children, Mary riding side saddle. Photo courtesy Jill Braithwaite.
Pearl Price tries her hand at shearing the family pet sheep, with hand shears, on Harpers Springs Station.
Pearl Price tries her hand at shearing the family pet sheep, with hand shears, on Harpers Springs Station. Photo courtesy Price/Powell Collection.

THE PETTICOAT DROVERS
Edith Bohning and her daughters, from Helen Springs Station north of Tennant Creek, were known as ‘petticoat drovers’. Esther and Elsie made history when they took the very first cattle on the train from Alice Springs to Adelaide in 1929. An agitated railway inspector asked Mr. Bohning how the two women would manage, to which he replied. . . ‘...if those two ladies can’t handle the situation then it will be no use getting your men to try.’

WRITERS
Under the name ‘The Little Bush Maid’, Elsie Bohning wrote articles and stories about station life and droving, which were published in the Northern Territory Times.

WATER WHIPPERS
Bertha Crook and her husband William operated the water whip at Wycliff Well, a depot for travelling stock. As young girls their daughters Doreen and Kathleen did much of the ‘whipping’, using a horse or camel to pull the rope that lowered the buckets into the well. Doreen later married Bill Braitling and they established Mt Doreen Station.

HOMEMAKERS
Fanny Ross was one of the first English speaking white women at the heart of Australia. In 1885 she joined her husband Alexander, manager of Undoolya Station. They later moved to Crown Point Station, south of Alice Springs.

TRUSTED FRIENDS
Stella, Jane Webb’s trusted Allyawarr Aboriginal friend helped with the Webb family’s housework and reared the five children, who spoke four local Aboriginal languages. When Jane died, Stella raised Jane's youngest daughter
as her own. Stella lived with the Webb family for eighteen years.

Bill, Mick and Elsie Bohning.
Bill, Mick and Elsie Bohning. Photo courtesy Bohning family.
‘Our old camp at Wycliffe Well’. Mrs Crooks with her two daughters. c1920.
‘Our old camp at Wycliffe Well’. Mrs Crooks with her two daughters. c1920 Photo reproduced with the permission of the National Trust (NT).


Mary Hayes (senior).
Courtesy: National Trust (NT)

MRS HAYES’ STORY
Mary Hayes arrived in Central Australia by bullock wagon in 1884 with husband William and 5 children. William had been contracted by Sir Thomas Elder to construct fencing and dams on Owen Springs and Mount Burrell Stations, about 160 km south of Alice. They had a nomadic life dam-sinking and working on various Central Australian stations eventually leasing Deep Well Station and later Mount Burrell, Undoolya and Maryvale. Mary and daughters Mary and Elizabeth were remarkable women doing their full share of mustering, branding, droving, slaughtering and building fences. On one occasion Mrs Hayes and the girls drove a flock of 1000 sheep nearly 600 kms to Mount Burrell. Mary walked all the way and despite big rains, causing the sheep to get bogged and the loss of her boots, the flock was brought home in-tact.


Stella.
Courtesy: the late Marilyn Webb, Jane Webb's granddaughter

STELLA'S STORY
Stella was an Allowera woman who lived at Mount Riddock Station with the Webb family for 18 years. She helped with the housework and the rearing of the 5 Webb children who it is known could speak 4 Allowera languages but could not read or write English until a male teacher stayed with them to help them through correspondence lessons. Stella's story is also told through a unique radio play "Stella The Fugitive Lubra", part of a series called "The Land and its People" written by Marjorie Gartrell. A copy of the original script is held in the NPWHF's Herstory archive. Described as Jane's trusted and most beloved friend, Stella later brought up Jane's youngest daughter Joy who was still a little girl when her mother died. Joy has fond memories of her Aboriginal nanny.

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