The Griffiths Family Home Page - Thomas Bowen Griffiths:Information about Gwladys Griffiths
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Gwladys Griffiths (b. 18 Mar 1900, d. 02 Sep 2000)Gwladys Griffiths (daughter of Henry Isaac Griffiths and Esther Parry) was born 18 Mar 1900 in Yawong (St Arnaud hospital) Victoria, and died 02 Sep 2000 in Geelong Victoria Australia.She married Ewan Duncan McNaughton on 14 Aug 1926 in Meredith Presbyterian Church Vic11, son of Donald McNaughton and Catherine McCallum.
Notes for Gwladys Griffiths:
Born St Arnaud, lived at Coonooer Bridge on the Griffiths property.
If she had been born on St Patrick Day, she was to have been called "Brigit" but was born after midnight.
1904when Gwladys was 24years old,and Tom was 2 there was a severe drought in the Yawong area.The family moved to Chestervale, Meredith.
1907 started school at 7 years old Walked 3 miles across paddocks to get to school unless the creek was flooded
1914 left school - 14 years old.
1915stayed home for one year
1916 went to Presbyterian Ladies College, Melbourne (PLC) at 16 years of age. Won a medal for General Excellence in 1916 Form IV special.
1917 missed exams this year due to mumps.
From December 1917, Gwladys was a border at PLC and came home by train every 3 months to Rokewood, traveling with Bannockburn girl - Helen Elder.
Gwladys was a good runner and won "Candlesticks" as a prize (whereabouts unknown). Won a book Lord Kitchener for Excellence in House Keeping, darning, mending etc.. Best friend Mrs Walker, best friend at PLC Jean Hinds. Annie Craig provided Home Help to the Griffiths family.
For 7 years - she stayed home to help with taking up the boy's trousers, ironing father's stiff Lodge shirts etc..
Went to Geelong New Year's Day,traveling by train.Isaac (Father), Tom, Ivor Henry and Gwladys.Swim at Western Beach then back to Meredith on 6.30pm train.
1924met Hugh (Christened Ewan Duncan McNaughton)
1926 August married Hugh but in September 1926 Hugh was admitted to Geelong Hospital with Pneumonia, having been at a sheep sale in heavy rain. Hugh was 37 years old )altho his Marriage Certificate states that he was 35 when married). They had been married for only 6 weeks. One niece indicates that Gwladys thought she may have been pregnant when Hugh died, but she was distraught at his untimely death and the trauma of his death could well have resulted in her losing the foetus.It was fortuitous that Hugh had made provisions for Gwladys in his Will. She remained good friends with the McNaughton family members.
1929 Gwladys moved to Geelong to 61 The Esplanade Drumcondra and nursed her ageing parents. Many will remember the large fruit trees and vegetable plots at the rear of the Drumcondra property, the ivy covered garage opening onto the rear laneway and the green Morris sedan which served Gwladys well for many years.
1942 She qualified to render "First Aid to the Injured" and worked tirelessly with the Red Cross, supporting the armed forces.
She traveled throughout Australia and oversees. On a world tour in 1964, Gwladys visited a number of descendants of the Daniel family in Indianapolis, USA.
She remained at the Drumcondra Griffiths home, living on her own after both mother and father died, until her own death in 2000 being in her 101st year. Gwladys received the time honoured traditional "Letter from Queen Elizabeth 11congratulating her on becoming a centenarian" which was proudly displayed at her 100 birthday celebration party with family and friends at St George's Presbyterian Church Hall.
Gwladys was a great worker for St George's Presbyterian Church, Geelong, continuing the strong association started by her parents.She bequeathed a large sum of money to St Georges to replace the old Church roof. Gwladys also left substantial inheritances to 8 or 9 of her nieces and nephews.
Gwladys was always the "gracious lady", strongly independent but friendly and obliging to all. She kept fit and healthy until she had a fall at home requiring a hip replacement. Following the surgery, she contracted pneumonia and died in Geelong Hospital a couple of days later. Perhaps the thought of losing her independence and the possible need to go into a nursing home played a hand in her not recovering as despite the injury and her age, she was still in apparent good health.
Gwladys took seriously the responsibility of keeping relatives in touch and frequently packed her little green case (with the colourful scarf tied on it so she could recognise it easily), and went "up country" to stay a few days with relatives. She was delighted when they in turn came to stay with her for a few days. She willingly traveled to Queensland to take care of Don and Jeanette's (Pedersen) 3 very young children for the birth of their 4th child, Richard.
Many 1st and 2nd cousins stayed with Gwladys at the Drumcondra home while they attended school or study courses - some lucky enough to stay in the special "blue room," - the first floor attic with the large binoculars and the balcony over the large front verandah, providing magnificent views across Corio Bay - (the revered and quaint attic which children could enter only on special occasions and the balcony which was forbidden territory to all as young children).From time to time she accommodated out of town students studying at the Gordon Technical School - many of these became life long friends.
Her New Year Day gathering of relatives for an evening meal together became a 'not to be missed' event each year, with family members coming from far and wide - all bringing huge plates of sumptuous cold meats, salads, sweets, cakes and slices "to die for" as the saying goes. Everyone enjoyed meeting new relatives-to-be, getting to see the new additions, watching the young families expand and the children grow up, catching up on the year's happenings and plans made for the new year,monitoring the travels, movements and illnesses of the older family members and hearing about all sorts of exciting exploits of the various family members.This provided a rare opportunity to maintain family contacts. Finally,nearing the centenary of her life and the passing of many of the older family members, sadly Gwladys could no longer manage arranging these gatherings and unfortunately,no other members of the family took the opportunity to continue these gatherings.
More About Gwladys Griffiths:
Burial: 07 Sep 2000, Meredith Vic..
Electoral Roll 1: 1924, C'w Corio, State Warrenheip, SubDiv Meredith Home Duties (Ref 242).
Electoral Roll 2: 1931, Geelong West, Corio Vic (4634) Home Duties.
Electoral Roll 3: 1936, Corio, Geelong, Geelong West, Home Duties.
Founding Member: Geelong Branch PLC Old Collegians.
Residence 1: 1924, 'Chestervale'Meredith Vic.
Residence 2: 1931, "31" The Esplanade, West Geelong.
Residence 3: 1936, 61 The Esplanade, Geelong West.
More About Gwladys Griffiths and Ewan Duncan McNaughton:
Marriage: 14 Aug 1926, Meredith Presbyterian Church Vic.11