Friday, June 12, 2009

Young 'ousemaid Nicked March 30th 1927

Back in the day when it was beginning to become apparent that the lower orders really had stopped tugging on their forelocks at their betters, a housemaid made orf with a Most Expensive Garment, Your Worship!

In March of 1927 the Federal Parliament parked their collective posteriors for the final time in Melbourne, beginning on the 24th.
Sir John Gellibrand, a Distinguished General from The Great War (one of those in charge who came home in one piece to establish Legacy) was the National Party MP for Denison in Tassie and had brought along the missus, possibly for a little shopping, a little round of dinner parties, perhaps they were going to lavishly entertain other politicians but I'm certain the little wifie had no plans of handing out her apparel to the hoi polloi.

At number 2 Collins Street in Melbourne - a mere 2 years before the commencement of building Alcaston House - the titled Gellibrands were based with their trunks, bags and assorted accoutrements. Probably planning a light round of socialising until the heavy politicking work was behind them, they no doubt had full faith in the servants engaged to care for them and their belongings.

One servant cared for one dress in particular so much so that she thought the poor wee lambkin should be taken home and given a loving family to look after it properly.
Elsie Wilson, who called an 'umble abode in Gertrude Street, Fitzroy home, took a fancy to a georgette frock and "another item of clothing" when doing her housemaidly duties in cleaning out the bedroom and wardrobe ( such a thorough lass!).
Alas, the georgette frock was worth a magnificent £17, far more than young Elsie was used to spending on her attire, no doubt, and Lady Gellibrand had a liking for that exact frock.

The filth wuz called an' young Else wuz in the crap propa wiv the filth pokin' their noses in 'er gear right orf. She knew the game wuz up an' wuz a lousy liar so she owned up quick smart, did young Else, didn't give no bovver to the plod.

Poor girl probably had a good scare back onto the right track in life when her 3 month gaol sentence was suspended and she was put on a good behaviour bond for 12 months with a £ 10 surety after a court case that was concluded on 29th March, a mere 5 days after Parliament began sitting.
Speedy justice for the titled, hmmm?


  1. I could do with an aristocrat living next door to the b*stards over the road, I reckon.

  2. One with a wild swing behind his baseball bat, Brian?

  3. Not necessarily Jayne...just one with close friends on the bench and the police board. It's amazing how quickly problems can get sorted out if you're in with the right gang.

  4. Those 'right gangs' seem to be sparse on the ground these days!

  5. Nice to have friends in the right places.