Sickness was the true scourge of the pioneers, with diphtheria, convulsions, scarlet fever and measles often causing the deaths of young children. Many women also died from complications of childbirth as there were no doctors. When Sarah Claydon arrived in Milton-Ulladulla in 1851, she began to care for those in her community who needed her most.
As a young Australian soldier lay dying, mortally wounded by shrapnel during the ill-fated Gallipoli campaign, Sister Kitty Porter stayed after her regular nursing shift on the hospital ship to care for and comfort him. Those “terrible days” early on in Australia’s participation in World War 1 marked the beginning of Kitty Porter’s four years of selfless war service in Egypt and France.
Bernard Brown, ancestor of a number of Milton Ulladulla residents, arrived in NSW as a free settler in November, 1848. His diaries, diligently maintained for well over two decades, were treasured by his descendants and later passed on to the Mitchell library. They have been a valuable resource for researching the history of the Shoalhaven District. Being of humble birth and having limited education, his writing, spelling and punctuation make deciphering his diaries a little like reading hieroglyphics.
I was born in 1945 at the Old Milton Hospital from where my parents Leila and Elwyn (‘Tiger’) Anderson took me home to the family property ‘Wickham Hill’, Milton. Mum helped with the milking so as an infant I was put in a play-pen in the engine/wash-up room of the dairy.
By the 1840s, the fertile land closest to the sea had been taken up. It needed a hardy breed to tackle the rugged country shelving from Pigeon House Mountain. Michael Drury hailed from London; his innate resource and Cockney adaptability helped him to pioneer at Glencoe.