Volume 1: Sydney Female Refuge Society meeting minutes, 15 February 1864 - 30 December 1864

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In 1848 the Sydney Female Refuge Society was established to provide a home for women escaping from prostitution and for young unmarried girls who fell pregnant. This collection includes the digitised pages of three 'minute books' from the Society records. The refuge was established on 21 August 1848 by those concerned at the level of pregnancies outside marriage and resulting from prostitution. The Committee which set up the refuge made it clear that Sydney was no worse than other cities around the world but that it did have unique problems.

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deciding Mrs Macintyre has requested to see Mrs Boyd & hear from her what she thought on the subject and this Sub Committee was empowered to arrange this matter at least in as far as the rules of the Institution could per mit

Two young women cousins applied for admifsion [admission] but as one had been in the Good Shepherd for two years and only wished to remain in the Refuge for a few months they were told to ask Mrs Gibbons to receive them as it was against the rules to ad mit persons for shorter periods.

The Matron's requistions was read and she was desirous to submit it to the Gentlemen's Committee and the Sub Committe were requested to purchase the goods next week.

At the meeting of the Ladies General Committee of the Sydney Female Refuge held on Friday the 1st Dec [December] 1865.

Present Mrs Deas Thomson Mrs Ord John Thompson " Murnin Graham " Reed Threlkeld Mills Speer Smith Foy & the Secretary

The minutes of previous meeting Daily journals Tabular & also Sub Committe Reports read 31 inmates in the Houses

The Secretary mentioned that Miss Leyton had resigned and it was resolved that

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an advertisement be put in the Herald asking applicants to be present on the following Tuesday to meet the Sub Committee.

Several of the Inmates were repri manded for bad conduct.

Mrs Bugarth called to say she could not keep Christiana her conduct was so very untruthful.

At the meeting of the Ladies General Committee of the Sydney Female Refuge held on Friday the 5th Jan ry [January]1866.

Present Mrs E Deas Thomson Mrs Threlkeld Mrs W Speer Mrs John Thompson Mrs Bickfred Mrs Jos [Joseph] Thompson Mrs Breillat Mrs Smith Mrs Graham Mrs Ord Mrs Allen and the Secretary

The Minutes of previous meeting Daily journals Tabular report and also Sub Committe Reports read

Inmates in the Houses

The Matron mentioned that Christiana Neilds was much better behaved times she had been locked up alone in the Ivy Cottages

Catherine Luthmains [?] applied for admifsion [admission] but it was resolved not to permit (crossed out) allow her she having been in this Insitution several years ago and [?] services that had filled several situations which she had left

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At the meeting of the Ladies General Committee held at the Refuge held on Friday 3rd of July 1863

Present Mrs E Deas Thomson Mrs Reed " Allen " Reeve " Caldwell and the Secretary

The minutes of previous meeting read and confirmed Daily Journals & Sub Committe Reports read and also Tabular Report

35 inmates in the Houses

The Matron mentioned she had received from Messrs Newton Brothers one piece of Tweed & one piece of printed Cobourgh for the use of the Inmates

Resolved that the Secretary write to Mr Newton an expression of the thanks of the Committe for his kindness.

The Secretary was requested to write to G. A. Lloyd Esq re [Esquire] thanking him for his attention in recommending the Institution to the notice of the different mothers of infants.

The father of one of the Inmates to be allowed to take his child out, the Committee expressed their regret at parting her but felt that they had no power to detain her.

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the amount of her drinking habits.

The Secretary mentioned that Lady Manning had kindly signified her willingness to join Lad( crossed out) Committee through Mrs G Wilson and this Secretary but omitted to mention this at the General Meeting.

Two young women admitted one has been in the houses several days

At the meeting of the Ladies General Committee of the Sydney Female Refuge held on Friday 2nd of Febey [February] 1866.

Present Mrs Hay Mrs Ord Mrs Threlkeld Mrs Thoms [ Thomas] Smith Mrs Mills & the Secretary

The minutes of previous meeting Daily Journals Tabular report & also the Sub Committe read.

39 inmates in the Houses

The Secretary mentioned that Hannah had been allowed to attend the funeral of her son & had returned to the Institution after a nights absence intoxicated

Resolved to release her provided she would go into the Laundry

Marion Bird's mother called & stated to the Matron she did not intend to pay for daughter but if the Ladies choose she would take her home The Ladies refused to discuss Mrs Bird but sent her a refuge [illegible ] intended to keep Marion

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A letter was read from Ellen Bright who expressed herself as perfectly happy and comfortable in her situation

At the meeting of the Ladies General Committee of the Sydney Female Refuge held on Friday the 2nd March 1866.

Present Mrs Graham Mrs John Thompson Mrs Jos [Joseph]Thompson Mrs Mills Mrs Reed Mrs Murnin Mrs John Dawson Mrs Widan Mrs Thomas Smith Mrs Hay & the Secretary

The minutes of previous meeting Daily Journals Tabular Report & also the Sub Committe

Matron requisition read & approved of

Isabella Cadile spoken to she has heard of a situation at Mudgee.

Resolved that the Gentlemen be requested to engage a Mefenger [messenger] for the whole week the Secretary also take notice in addrefing [addressing] the Gentlemen of the fact that there is no contract for the sup ply of provisions for Inmates of whom there are a larger number than intended

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