Hard Labour

Jeanette Campbell (nee McAllister) with her husband Hugh and her brood

Women as well as men faced hard physical work daily with few devices to limit their pain. Servants were not available, even for more affluent women who did the daily grind, assisted only by their daughters. Rural women worked on the farm as well as in the house and were distant from all amenities. They made  clothes and furnishings, butter, bread, and jam in additional to their other household chores. The face of Jeanette Campbell (nee McAllister) shows the toll on young women with large families. She was 36 years old and would have two more children after this photo was taken in 1901 on their Bryan’s Gap property near Tenterfield, New South Wales. Her children learnt music at home as well as Scottish highland dancing. Her role model, mother Jennett McAllister, widowed at 39, was remarkable for her time. She had nine children, ran the house and property, bought and sold produce and livestock, educated her children and was a competent horsewoman. Her surviving sons, renowned for their horsemanship learnt on the family property in the Mole Valley, went on to military careers.