|Country of Origin||England|
|Date of Birth||1898|
|Year of Arrival in Australia||1919|
|Submitted by||Barry Collin|
My grandfather had gone to the Great War in 1915 and met my grandmother, Kate Reader, who was a nurse in the hospital he was sent to when he was wounded near Fromelles in France in 1916.
My Grandparents were married in February 1917 and were shipped to Australia on board the SS Wahehe. The ship docked in Sydney harbour on 1st July 1919. This vessel was originally called the ‘Hilda’, and was a ‘prize’ from the war. My grandmother spoke of the opulence of the vessel and the excitement of travelling on the ocean to this ‘new world’.
My grandmother’s first impressions of Australia were of the intense heat and said she never really got used to it. She always was seeking out the shade. I always felt that Kate’s assimilation into the Australian way of life was somewhat troubled. I suspect that conversations about returning to England were brought up by her with my grandfather more than once.
As a youngster I always felt that my grandmother, being from the ‘Victorian Era’, saw the ways of life and the ‘dress sense’ of Australians as conflicting with how she saw things.
She never made a return visit to England and died in Adamstown, Newcastle in 1968.