(written for International Women’s Day 2021)
Jessie Georgina Craske was born 1904, the eldest of five girls, to John and Sophia who lived in a small rented cottage in Ross St Port Melbourne.
Jessie was a pupil at Nott St State school till the age of 14.
She found work at Johnson and Johnson Talc Powder Manufactures, working five and a half days a week, becoming an expert at Box Powders with beautiful ribbon silk bows.
Jessie and her Sister Hilda loved dancing, live theatre, train trips to Belgrave, and best of all outings along the Bay on the ship Hygea to Portsea at weekends; and of course their local Port Theatre was a favourite Saturday night outing.
Jessie’s Mother Sophia died in her fifties leaving Jessie and her Father Sidney to care for their family. Kathy, the youngest, was born disabled so Jessie became a surrogate Mother for many years.
Jessie met Albert Daley in 1930 and they married in 1935 after they put a deposit on a new Garden City Bank Home of English design facing a beautiful reserve and with a large backyard to grow veggies and fruit trees; such a large block compared with most homes in the Borough.
Jessie made pickles, jams, chutneys and bottled fruit, and cared for her well tended garden. She upholstered furniture, painted, mended shoes, cut our hair, made all our clothes; there was nothing she didn’t have a go at – she often said she loved her life in Garden City.
Her memory and presence is with me every day as this where I have made my home. My life growing up here moulded me to whom I am today and as her Daughter I am truly blessed.
Darling Mum I miss you.
Jessie died peacefully in her sleep in her home in July 1991 Age 87 years.
Written by her Daughter Lois Hilda Daley of Port Melbourne.
(Pictures shown are for effect only and are not connected to Lois or her mother)