Saturday, October 19, 2013

Sepia Saturday

This week's image suggests dressing up, theatre, Pirates, whatever you will.  I was really pleased that this theme came up as it gives me a chance to display one of my favourite photos of my mother, Laura Heyne.

My mother was born into a reasonably strict Lutheran family, though I suspect her parents were less devout than some of their siblings. Nevertheless as a girl, my mother  and her siblings did not go to dances or wear makeup etc.  Mum trained as a teacher and in 1925 at the age of 20 went to teach in a small country school at Minlaton on the Yorke Peninsula.  Teaching in those days was not easy and her first class was 70 children from Kindergarten (now called Reception) to Year 3. The principal (the only other teacher) had the children from Year 4-7.

Mum loved teaching in the country, not the least because for the first time she was free of the strictures imposd on her as a member of the Lutheran church. She literally 'had a ball'. As an attractive single girl she was a popular addition to the farming town and had a very active social life. She boarded in a local boarding house and had many stories to tell of it. The house was not very large and to fit in as many lodgers as she could, the landlady divided up the bedrooms with dividers made of hessian, thus turning one bedroom into two or more. As Mum was the only female lodger, she had to share a bed with her landlady - not an ideal arrangement.

After a couple of years she moved to Port Lincoln which was a much larger town with an even more active social life. Several female teachers (including Mum) were transferred back to the city because it was thought by the Education Department that they were not setting an example that "we like our lady teachers to set".

This photo shows a group of young things dressed up for a fancy dress ball. My mother is seated on the right.

My mother in-law as a young girl was keen on calisthenics and music and was apparently in a lot of performances. These are some photos of her and a friend dressed up for concerts or maybe Eisteddfords which were very popular in the 20s ansd 30s.

Mavis in her calisthenics uniform.

Mavis again dressed up as a little girl, I think.

A friend of Mavis'dressed for a parade.

Finally one of myself taken with the cast of The Mikado at Darwin High School about 1969. I actually made all the costumes.  I was young and attractive enough in those days for the young lad holding my hand to have a crush on me, one of his teachers.

Liz Needle  -  linking with Sepia Saturday


  1. These are fascinating!! Thank you for sharing.

  2. HI Liz It is lovely that you were able to show the photo with your Mum in it this week. Yes I am sure teaching was very different for nowadays but at least she would have had discipline in her class! The other shots are great also. Lovely to see the different clothes.

  3. Love the pirate photo. Looks like they had fun!

  4. The last photo shows some nice beehives (and the guy in the back looks like a young Mr. Spock).

  5. Your Mikado costumes are great. Your students must have loved you!

  6. Great photos, thanks Liz, especially that one with your mother and the other lady pirates! I had to perform in a few eisteddfods in the 1960s when I was doing elocution lessons, which I dreaded, despite managing to win a couple of first places for my efforts for under 12 monologue and duologue - the only trophies I've ever received :-)

  7. I see somone else has already used the word fascinating but I can;t help but use it again. That post was absolutely fascinating. It sonjures up the restrctions of the era so well. Lovely photos.

  8. The Mikado seems to have been very popular. I can't remember for sure, but think it might have been performed at my school too.

    I have no idea what an eisteddfod is.

  9. I just bet you were pleased with this theme, you posted fabulous fun photos, especially the first photo, which is my favorite of all.

  10. Oh, the hairdo of the late 60s! The older women in my family had those in many of their photos :) You're talented with costumes.

  11. 70 in a Class!
    Those a great Photos & Costums!Thanks For Sharing.

  12. Wonderful images. Dressing up and being someone else is so freeing.