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Diary - Ally Heathcote, SS 'Northumberland', England to Melbourne, Victoria 1874 Document Reg. No: HT 1104

Summary:
Diary written by Ally Heathcote on SS Northumberland, England to Melbourne, 1874. Her two page Preface outlines a brief biography. Born in Preston in the North of England, she arrived in Australia at the age of nineteen with her parents and two siblings Willie and Maggie, whom she states 'had for years thought of visiting Australia at length'. Ally also states that she had often thought of immigrating but that she 'never had the remotest idea that my dreams of travelling 16 thousand miles would ever be realised.'

Ally's diary begins with the departure: they left on Monday 21 September 1874, travelling on the steamship Northumberland, they considered travelling by clipper but due to her mother's health, wanted the shortest journey possible. She describes the route, shipboard life, food, illnesses, navigational details such as longitude and latitude, distances and speed, first impressions of Australia and general feelings of excitement, the sorrow of separation, the joys and relief of arrival.

The diary has been written with a sense of audience. Near the beginning is an undertaking to her uncle to keep a diary, and at its conclusion there is a letter written by Ally from 88 Drummond St Carlton to her aunt and uncle which implies that she sent it to them in England. In the letter she invites them to circulate it and even to perhaps get printed in the Times.
Description:
76 page handwritten stitched journal, densely written on front and reverse pages. Diary commences with a preface then continues "Steamship Northumberland - passage to Australia in 52 days - Brief sketches of life onboard a steam vessel." The diary is divided into dated, day by day descriptions.
Discipline: History

More information

Tagged with: immigration, immigrant voyages, diaries, shipping, journal writing, station pier, british immigration, shipping industry, women s travel, 18
Themes this item is part of: Cultural Diversity Collection, Migration Collection
Primary Classification: MIGRATION
Secondary Classification: Travel - Shipboard Life
Tertiary Classification: diaries
Inscriptions: Extensive text.
Author: Miss Ally Heathcote, 1874
Ship Depicted: SS Northumberland, 1874

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