The Birth of a Dream – now available online


The Birth of a Dream, the hugely entertaining and heart-warming history of Jenny’s Place, compiled by Suzanne Romani to celebrate our 40th anniversary, is now available online.

The 90+ page publication has been uploaded to the University of Newcastle’s Histories of Women Archives – Hunter Living Histories (HLH) site.

You can find it here: The Birth of a Dream : Jenny’s Place Women & Children’s Refuge Newcastle (1977-2017) | Living Histories

Local researcher, Jude Conway, created the electronic version of the booklet. Dr Ann Hardy, Co-ordinator of the HLH Initiative at the University of Newcastle’s Special Collections Services (SCS), said Jude is a wonderful advocate for women’s histories.

“I gave a little assistance to Suzanne Romani when she was writing her brilliant history of Jenny’s Place,” Jude said. “I gave her digitised materials I had collected on Jenny’s Place, advice on research, assistance with the bibliography and proof read in the final stages.”

Suzanne says Jude is far too modest in her assessment of her role in the creation of The Birth of a Dream. She wanted to acknowledge and thank her for ‘immeasurable’ assistance.

“There was no way I could have really begun to write anything without Jude’s already compiled research,” Suzanne said. “Wendy Heys also contributed enormously to proof-reading the text. There are many people who helped me to compile the booklet but Jenny’s Place Founding Committee member Wendy Couper’s first hand memories of the early days of the refuge were invaluable.”

Suzanne asked Jude if she was able to get the history online a few years back. But Jude was busy completing her doctoral history thesis: The Newcastle women’s movement in the 1970s and 1980s through the lens of Josephine Conway’s activism and archives. It is also available online.

The University’s SCS will create an HLH blog post to promote Jenny’s Place history and our 45th anniversary in September. It will add to their Histories of Hunter Women Archives – Hunter Living Histories

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