Farewell Joanne Ewin
The Milton Ulladulla Historical Society (MUHS) recently lost one of its highly-valued Life Members with the passing of Joanne Ewin on 24 January 2018, a well-known and respected member of the Milton-Ulladulla community and a past secretary of MUHS.
Joanne’s love for the area has been shown in the many projects with which she has been involved, both for MUHS and also as a Life Member of the Milton Ulladulla Family History Society. Her tireless work as researcher, writer and also secretary has been an instrumental part of the success of both societies.
For many years Joanne wrote a regular column for the Milton-Ulladulla Times, covering MUHS events as well as biographies of Milton-Ulladulla’s most notable pioneers and residents, such as John Booth, the Warden brothers and Matron Gwenda Porter.
Joanne Frances Ewin (née Ross-Smith) was born in Sydney in 1934, educated at Fort Street Girls High School and became a library assistant until her marriage to Lyall Ewin in 1959. Over the following decades she worked with Lyall managing and building up the family dairy farm and raising a family before developing her interests in genealogy and district history.
Joanne authored several books, including ‘The Ewins of Milton‘ (1985), ‘A Century at Woolwich – the family at “Ardwell“‘ (2007) and ‘Smiths and Beales united : a revision of Phil Ross-Smith’s family history of 1976‘ (2014). She was also a major contributor to ‘Nulladolla – a history of the Milton-Ulladulla District‘ published by MUHS (1972, 1988) and the newer 2002 edition of ‘East of Pigeon House‘.
However, it is for her 1991 book ‘Meet the Pioneers – early families of the Milton Ulladulla District with Photographs‘ (1991) which really brought to life the early pioneering families of Milton-Ulladulla that she will be best remembered. Covering nearly 200 families and featuring painstaking research and a huge collection of early photographs, it paints a detailed and vivid picture of early South Coast settlement and the development of our two towns. ‘Meet the Pioneers‘ remains one the district’s most important historical resources.
Joanne Ewin will be very much missed – for her lively and intelligent conversation, her extraordinary knowledge of Milton-Ulladulla and its history and people, and for her continuing contribution to MUHS for over 30 years, even through her last years of illness.