Revealing SA Through Family History

Television shows like ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ – coupled with booming online databases – confirm that family history is a popular and powerful approach to diving deeper into who we are.   

In this Talking History we hear how four family historians navigated the challenges of researching writing their family stories before exploring what these families can reveal about South Australia today. 

Chair: Dr Kiera Lindsey, South Australia’s History Advocate
Speakers: Prof. Marian Quartly (Monash University), Alan Atkinson, Judith Francis, Rose Rawady. 

Date: 11 July 2024
Time: 5:45pm for a 6:00pm start 

The Talking History program is delivered in partnership with the University of South Australia.

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Marian Quartly is Professor Emerita in the Monash University School of Philosophical, Historical and International Studies. She has taught and researched at Monash for more than forty years. Her most cited works are Australians 1838 (1987), and Creating a Nation (2006), written with 3 other feminist historians. More recently she has co-authored a history of Australian adoption, The Market in Babies (2013), and a history of the National Council of Women of Australia, Respectable Radicals (2015)Most recently she has published a history of her own family, The Middling Sort; A South Australian Family History (2023).  

Alan Atkinson is a journalist, author, editor who has long lived in South Australia. He began his journalist career on The Scotsman in Edinburgh, followed by the Guardian in London. In Australia he wrote for the Advertiser before joining the ABC in Perth and then becoming a senior producer in Adelaide. He is now a freelance author and editor. His previous non-fiction book was called Three Weeks in Bali, an eye-witness account of the 2002 terror attacks in Kuta (he was there on holiday at the time). His work has brought several awards, including a Walkley nomination and Journalist of Year in SA.   

Judith Francis was born in a small country town on Eyre Peninsula, leaving school at 16. She worked in Adelaide for several years, before returning ‘home’ to marry. Her experiences of growing up in a small community gave her an enduring sense of the need we have for developing and maintaining close relations with others. Judith trained as a primary teacher in the mid-70s and was fortunate to work in the public education sector for over thirty-five years. During this time, she undertook further studies in Business Management and Communications Studies. Three of her lifelong interests have been history, family genealogy and writing stories. She joined the Pioneers Association of SA in 2011 and was President 2020 -2023. Judith is currently writing her LEE family stories as well as researching the life of Harriet GOUGER (nee JACKSON) to ensure her place in history is revealed. 

Rose Rawady has previously worked in reference libraries and archives. In mid-life, she became a mental health social worker with nearly 30 years of experience in child and family mental health and clinical social workIn particular, she became interested in how we honour and preserve life stories and memoriesRose is also a keen family history researcher and has been doing this for more than 10 years; inherited from her father Eli Rawady, who made many efforts to preserve what he knew of his family historyThe past speaks to and influences the presentFamily and community memories are held not only in documents and artifacts, but as the associated stories and memories we share