Insights into History, Writing and Dottie's Doings ....

Hidden Histories

Like walking into the labrynth of the Neolithic burial mound at Knowth in Ireland (pictured above 2016), I research ‘hidden’ aspects of history.

The publication Refuge Rescue & Reform: Voices of Suffering and Survival, co-written with Frank Golding, and launched on 24 May 2024 at the Trades Hall Ballarat tells the history of those lesser known institutions and the stories of women and children who were 'inmates' of these institutions. History it seems, is always with us!

Stories of those who have been silenced or unable to speak for themselves are truly 'hidden' histories. They are unpredictable, incomprehensible, and often contain amazing examples of how 'ordinary' people have overcome extraordinary circumstances by their courage, ingenuity, and fortitude.

They include the stories of:

  • ‘fallen’ women
  • children
  • the poverty stricken
  • and other ‘hidden’ categories of history

Historically children's voices have been silenced. Criminality and destitution have been invisibly woven into society and the protection of women and children. The lines still remain somewhat blurred, even in 2020, between protective, reformative and welfare systems in our society.

Full Cover Jpg Low Res 436326 REFUGE RESCUE REFORM Cover

Writing & Publishing

It has been exciting to have been involved in publishing for nearly 30 years. There have been over 50 different titles, that delivered a range of topics from transnational histories to biographical accounts.

My own titles are usually along the following themes, although in the two current books I am writing my comfort zone is completely challenged. In them I explore the constructs of shame and sexuality, virtue & vice, refuge & reform, on the goldfields of Victoria.

  • Eureka
  • Women
  • Freemasons
  • Goldfields

Dot's Designs

Creating and designing books, posters and flyers is something I love to do. It's great learning about the interests of other authors.

The most recent books I've designed (launched December 2020) are  Pioneers in Two Colonies: The Armytage Family in Australia 1816-1876 written by Dennis Green (264 pages) and the Bendigo Goldfields Petition.

I've enjoyed learning about Aboriginal culture in books by Professor Ian Clark, Janice Newton, and Associate Professor Fred Cahir, gardening and the history of the horticultural society by Dr Michael Taffe, and the three volume history of Aviation in Australasia by Dr Leigh Edmonds.

James and Emilie Kinnane and family: Frederick, David, Russell and Jean. James was not yet born.
James and Emilie Kinnane and family: Frederick, David, Russell and Jean. James was not yet born.

Family Histories

Researching family history is an interesting way to learn about the conditions of times that have gone before and how our current world has evolved. It opens previously unknown horizons.

Some wonderful friends and extraordinary relatives have been found through my research into family history. As well as my personal family history research, I’ve attended expos, conferences, and open days that have been informative and so interesting.

A huge thank you everyone for your ongoing friendship!

Bits & Bobs

Who hasn’t collected those ‘bits & bobs’ ?

They don’t seem to fit anywhere, but are hilarious or of some interest.

Those little snippets (my medieval musings, early newspaper articles that struck a note, or ‘Dot’s Drunkards’) will now have a ‘home’ and will hopefully be of interest to those who read them.

The practice of Skimmington
The practice of Skimmington