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Welcome to the 1898 Diary of a Victorian Lady

Nearly 50 years ago, my uncle gave me a small, blue leather bound diary which he said had been passed on to him during his service in Italy during the second world war. In 2014 I undertook some research into the diarist, their location and family and circle of acquaintances, taking each daily manuscript entry in turn to build up a picture not only of their life in 1898, but before and afterwards.

124 years after the diarist took pen to paper, I am going to post an entry a day from the diary, with any information from that earlier research, updated through further investigation this year. And, at the suggestion of a friend, I am going to add a short diary entry of my own, reflecting my life and times in 2022 and a photo a day from my #365dayphotochallenge in Instragram.

The page-to-a-day diary itself is bound in soft dark blue leather, now scuffed round the edges, with the words Mawson, Swan, & Morgan’s POCKET DIARY stamped in gold on the front. The back cover is blank. The edges of the leaves are also gold, the leaves are stitched into the spine. Some of the leaves are loose.

It measures 7cm x 9.5cm and is about 1cm thick.

In the top menu, The Places page gives a summary of some of the main locations mentioned and, as time goes on, I’ll also add short biographies on the Who’s Who? page of people mentioned as their identities become clearer. I don’t want to reveal all too soon! The Sources page lists those online sources that I have used most in the research. The tag cloud can be used to navigate to posts which include specific names or themes.

Lesly Huxley, 1 January 2022