‘The public should be taught that it is just as necessary to go to hospital for childbirth as for a surgical operation,’ a prominent practitioner told his audience of doctors in 1920.1 Nevertheless, most women, like Ming, preferred to have their babies at home with a midwife, or in a private ‘Lying-in’ establishment run by one. The public hospitals and their male doctors continued to cater to poor and working-class mothers, many of them single, many of them, like Mary, with nowhere else to go. A photograph of one of Crown Street’s wards from the time shows a long, cavernous room, with a dark polished wood floor and iron-framed beds lining the walls.
KeywordsWhite Woman Bright Spot Aboriginal Woman Domestic Service Rural Employer
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