The RHSV’s major lecture during Women’s History Month (March). The lecture will start at 6pm and we will be serving drinks prior to that from 5:30pm.
The daughter of Prime Minister Alfred Deakin, Vera Deakin studied music in the Habsburg Empire on the eve of the Great War. Driven by British imperial fervour on her return to Australia, she bypassed the government’s restrictions on women’s participation in the war effort by serving with the fledgling Australian Red Cross. Aged only 23 in 1915, she became the founding secretary of the Australian Red Cross Wounded & Missing Enquiry Bureau in Cairo and later London. Narrowly avoiding replacement by a man, she showed outstanding leadership and was appointed OBE. In peace she married an adventurous military pilot, Captain Thomas White, later a cabinet minister. When he was knighted, she became Lady White. Vera led several humanitarian causes but her lodestar remained the Red Cross.
Carole Woods OAM is a Fellow and honorary secretary of the RHSV. A former librarian, bibliographer and freelance historian, she has been a longtime advocate for community history. She chaired the judges’ panel of the Victorian Community History Awards for seven years and curated two exhibitions at the RHSV. Her books include Beechworth. A Titan’s Field and the recently published Vera Deakin and the Red Cross.
Chaired by Dr Judith Smart AM.
239 A'Beckett St
Melbourne, VIC 3000
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