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French Family 
Papers relating to Pernatty Station

MSS 0218

Biographical note

Letter to W. French

Pernatty Station is located 136 km north of Pt Augusta on the western edge of Lake Torrens, occupying a total of 2284 square kilometres of the traditional lands of the Kokotha people. The name is taken from Pernatty Creek, named by the explorer Charles Swindon after the Aboriginal name for the local waterhole.

The Old Pernatty area of the station was originally leased in 1868 by James Bowman and was one of the first in the area to be stocked with sheep. It was sold to William Coombe of Partacoona Station in 1896. The station experienced severe drought, and the 15 year old Walter David French, who had been sent to Pernatty to do contract work, stayed to manage the 28,000 sheep which dwindled down to only 700. Walter met and fell in love with Agnes Greenfield of South Gap Station and they married in 1903.

Her father, William Greenfield, bought Pernatty from Coombe in 1906, along with some additional blocks. William Greenfield originally managed South Gap Station, until he and his brother George went into partnership and bought the South Gap lease in 1885. After a falling out, the partnership was dissolved in 1906, with William owning South Gap, Parakylia, Roxby Downs and the newly purchased Pernatty Station. Walter and Agnes moved to Old Pernatty to look after sheep and the infrastructure.

George Greenfield and his family lived at Purple Downs Station, and also owned Billa Kallina, Andamooka and Bosworth Stations. William died in 1922, and his estate was put into trust until the death of George in 1926, when the beneficiaries could take charge of their properties and Walter and Agnes French became owners of Pernatty Station. Walter and Agnes moved from Old Pernatty to Acacia Creek where they had their home built in time to move in by Christmas 1927, with their staff and children, five sons and one daughter.

Pernatty subsequently grew with the purchase of Glen Verne and Corraberra Stations in 1932 (with the eldest son Laurie in charge), the southern end of Yeltacowie and Mount Gunson stations in 1936 and 1938, Mundallio Station in 1948 (managed by youngest son Jack), and Corunna Station at Iron Knob (run by son Graham), under the ownership of the Pernatty Pastoral Company.

The increased size of the property ensured enough sheep or cattle could be pastured to be economically viable and survive the regular dry conditions. Much time, money and labour was spent on the construction of wells and dams to waterproof the property. The wool clip was the main source of income, along with the sale of cattle and skins. During the prosperous times, the properties employed over a hundred people to shear and manage the stock and in domestic work.

Walter and Agnes retired to Port Augusta in late 1957 while their third child Walty, became manager of Pernatty. After both parents died, the property passed on to Walty and his son Colin, in 1961. Walty and his wife Mildred moved into his parents’ homestead, while Colin and his wife Ina, and daughter Beth, moved into his parent’s house 100 yards away. Colin’s son, Leslie, then moved into Pernatty after the death of his mother, Ina, in 1990. Walty died in 1999 of cancer which left Pernatty to Colin and Leslie.

The station experience difficulties due to the decreasing price of wool and extended drought. In 2010 Pernatty was sold to Col Greenfield of Billa Kalina, and changed from Merino sheep to Dorpa, a meat only breed which shed their wool and didn’t need shearing.


The Pernatty family and station papers were donated to the University of Adelaide Library in 2016 by Elizabeth Montgomery (Beth) French, the daughter of Colin French. The story of the French family and extracts from the station diaries are available from her book Pernatty Halcyon Days and Difficult Times 


The papers contain personal correspondence and memorabilia of the French family and detailed financial records of Pernatty Station in regard to stock, employees, dams and wells, infrastructure and supplies. The daily entries of the station diaries from 1927 to 1963 provide important records of daily life on the land, family and social activities, visitors and workers at station (including Aboriginal workers), work performed, rainfall and climate; also details of names of passengers by the mail coach, numbers of cattle killed, sheep and kangaroo skins sold, sheep and cattle sold and bought, camels, wool clip, sheep sheared, station buildings erected and much more, along with some records of South Gap station and other related stations.

Series 1: Personal and family correspondence 30 cm

Series 2. Station and general correspondence 80 cm

Series 3. Partnership agreements & estate business 10 cm

Series 4: Banking correspondence and records, mainly with National Bank 15 cm

Series 5 Station financial records / accounts 80 cm

Series 6. Diaries / station records 1.9 m

Series 7. Photographs (IN ALBUM)

Series 8: Biographical / Other 25 cm

Series 9: Maps

Series 1: Personal and family correspondence 30 cm.

1.1. “Love letters” from Walter David French to Agnes Greenfield, 16/1/1903-7/12/1903 (all photocopies). With letter of congratulations from Alfred Dale 17/8/1902
(Walter and Agnes married in 1903)

1.2. Agnes French [South Gap station] letters and memorabilia:

  • letter to Mill and Wally from their mother, Agnes 17 September n.y.
  • ‘postcard’ decorative Christmas card with mounted plastic moulded decoration, from Walter to Aggie
  • green velvet ‘Good luck’ card with plastic decoration, unsigned
  • “The Poetical Birthday Text Book’ London: Ernst Nister, n.d. filled in with family and friends birthday days and dates of birth 1853-1909
  • funeral card for Agnes French d. 13/3/1961 aged 76 years
  • ‘Rhymes at random’ / by the editor of The Woman’s Budget [Ellen Joy Todd] Sydney: Harold Murray, [1917] “In aid of the War Finds of the YMCA. Top edge heavily cropped

1.3. Letters from Walter D. French’s brothers ca 1921, 1929-59

  • Henry James French 1921
  • John Herbert French 1921-39
  • John Isaac French 1930-39
  • Edmund Willie French, Willochra 1930-39
  • Thomas Victor French 1930, 1936

1.4. Letters to W.D. French from W.H. Greenfield (father-in-law) and D. Greenfield 1916-1920, 1930-51 and undated

1.5. Letters to W.D. French from George H. Greenfield 1931-32, and to George 1935. 1 folder

1.6. Letters to W.D. French from his sons and daughter:

  • From Laurie [William John Lawrence] French 1913 (to his mother), 1932-38; 1939-44, 1949 (mainly from Corraberra Station)
  • Letters to W.D. French from son W.R. [William Royal] French (Bill), Glenberne, 1932 and undated
  • Letters to W.D. French from son Tom [Thomas Victor], 1933-38, and 1943 (from 2/14 Regiment)
  • Letters to W.D. French from Garnie [Garnett Heading] and ’Sis’ [Evelyn Agnes French] 1938-44
  • Letters to W.D. French from son Jack [John Denton], Mundallio Station, 1949
  • Letters to W.D. French from son W.E. [Walter Edmund] (‘Walty’) 1936, 1939, 1940,1943, 1945

1.7. Letters to Walty [Walter Edmund Stanley] French ca 1939-53

1.8. Letters to Mrs Mildred French from family and friends on the death of her son Kevin, 1945 [plus 1 letter of condolence 1935]

1.9. Colin Walter French

  • letters etc 1944-1975
  • Army records, CMF training 1952-54

1.10. Letters from Roxby Downs Station to W.D. French 1918, 1920, 1930-33, 1951. Correspondents include D.G. Greenfield, W. Greenfield, W. Merrill and H.O. Abbott

1.11. Letters from Purple Downs Station to W.D. French 1928-33. Correspondents include Norman Greenfield, J.V. French (brother) and Albert H. Greenfield.

1.12. Letters from Oakden Hills Station to W.D. French ca 1931-44. Mainly from S. Kidman, also D.F. McTaggart and Bob Brett.

1.13. Letters from Yeltacowie to W.D. French 1927-51. Correspondents include A.B. Rutherford, Jim Anderson

1.14. Letters from Andamooka Station to W.D. French 1931-39. Correspondents are A.R. Prichard and F.H. Eagle.

1.15. ‘Letters from Port Augusta’: letters to W.D. French from friends and others living in Port Augusta 1929-49. Most of the letters were from A.P. Welk 1930-33, 1937-42. Other correspondents filed alphabetically.

1.16. Letter from Isabel French to Grandma, Mundallio Station, 1949, with typescript poem ‘The Old People’ by Snow Stafford

1.17. Letter to ‘Dear Children from mother (Susan French) 1920, with typescript poem ‘The Old People’ by Snow Stafford

1.18. Letter to Ina from Joyce and ?, 1958

1.19. Letters to Walter David French from Harry M. Dormer 1932 & 1944; Wm Inez Black 1920

1.20. Letters to Allan A. Robbins, at one stage at Pernatty Station ca 1969

Series 2. Station and general correspondence 80 cm

2.1. Station correspondence. Letters re station and general business, mainly written to and from W.D. French 1910-1990

2.2. Correspondence from Dalgety & Co. Ltd. 1915, 1922, 1927-51, 1954, 1956 includes

  • Dalgety invoices 1928-30, 1938-44, 1949-51, 1953-56
  • Transmission and radio licence renewals 1945-51, game licence 1948
  • Car registration and insurance 1938-51
  • Life insurance 1932-50
  • Property insurance: fire 1940, 1944; list of premiums 1950

2.3. Correspondence from Executor Trustee & Agency Co 1927, 1929, 1930-32, 1942—46, 1949, 1951, 1952, 1958, 1960, 1971, 1974

  • Also Statements of returns /Accounts for tax 1931-35, 1942, 1949, 1965

See also Series 3.2: Estate business

2.4. Correspondence re pipelines

  • re Pimba pipeline 9/6/1948
  • re Pt Augusta-Woomera pipeline, 20/8/1948, 23/9/1949, 7/5/1951 AND 22/6/1954

2.5. Correspondence with Povey & Waterhouse Solicitors 1933, 1937-47 re investments, loans made, new tyres, partnership affairs, gift duty
See also Series 3

2.6. Correspondence re motor car and truck insurance, maintenance and repairs 1927-32, 1939, 1946, 1950. Also Driver’s Licence for Walter David French, 1919, and car insurance policies for Buick Buckboard 1930-41

2.7. Telegrammes 3 cm
Handwritten copies of telegrammes sent for personal and station communication, including ordering of stores, appointments, holiday arrangements, mining operations with Explorico of Broken Hill. Mostly undated (ca 1951-55)

2.8. Letters from Mr Oliver James Young of Young & Gordon Importers and General Merchants, Port Augusta, to WD and A. French, 1929-1932, and1933-37, 1940 re supplied and station business. Includes some letters from H.L. Young. 30 cm.

  • Plus invoices, debit notes etc from Young & Gordon 1933-34, 1936-7 (2 items only), 1943-45
  • See also Series 6.5. Book of goods ordered from Young & Gordon

Series 3. Partnership agreements & estate business 10 cm.

See also Series 2.5: Correspondence with Povey & Waterhouse

3.1. Partnership agreements

  • Partnership agreement between Walter David French, Agnes French, William John Lawrence French, Walter Edmund Stanley French, Victor Thomas French and John Denton French to form the Pernatty Pastoral Company 1/7/1944
  • Map showing Mundallio land purchase 1948
  • 4 letters 1953 re retirement of W.R. French from the Pernatty Pastoral Co. partnership as of 30/6/1954
  • Partnership agreement between Walter David French, Agnes French and Walter Edmund Stanley French re Pernatty Pastoral Company 18/12/1956, and associated correspondence

3.2. Estate Business

Will of Jessie Christina Ann Hall 1923

Property and estate of W.H. Greenfield

  • 1895 reference for W.H. Greefield from W.E. Woolnough
  • 1906 auction invoice for purchase of Pernatty and Woodforde Stations bought by W.H. Greenfield
  • 1906 bill of sale for stock, plant, and stores bought by W.H. Greenfield, signed by W. Coombe
  • 1927 letter re division of estate
  • Letter to W.D. French with statement of accounts and cheque of share in the estate 12/9/1935

Estates of W.D. and Agnes French

  • W.D. French: will (1957) and correspondence with Executor Trustee and Agency etc re estate 1960-62
  • W.D. French estate: correspondence re succession duty 1960-61
  • Agnes French: will and correspondence with Executor Trustee and Agency etc re probate 1961-62
  • Pernatty station: valuations 1964 and 1968
  • W.E.S. French: correspondence with Executor Trustee and Agency etc re tax, partnership agreements, particulary re Mildred Esther French (wife of W.E.S. French), and finalisation of the estates of W.D. and Agnes French 1961-63

See also Series 2.3 Correspondence with Executor Trustee

Series 4: Banking correspondence and records, mainly with National Bank 15 cm.

Includes correspondence and records 1912-1949, 1951-55, 1964-86 (very incomplete)

  • Cheque books W. French 1913-18 and 1957
  • Various blank deposit slips
  • Fixed deposits
  • Commonwealth War Loan receipts
  • Treasury Bonds receipts
  • Commonwealth and security loans X


  • Correspondence re Seventh War Loan 1917 and prospectus
  • Correspondence 1933-40, and annual bonus certificates from Australian Mutual Provident Society for Mr W.D. French 1924, 1947 and 1949, 1956
  • Agreement 14/6/1949 between W.E.S. French of Pernatty Station to loan £70 to Alfred Allen Robins
  • Bank pass book of Walter Edmund Stanley French, National Bank of Australasia, Pt Augusta branch, 1947-1955

Series 5 Station financial records / accounts 80 cm.

See also Series 2: Station correspondence Dalgety invoices and Young & Gordon invoices

5.1. Financial journals: payments arranged by supplier / account 1927-37, 1954-69 20 cm.

5.2. Monthly payments journals, including wages, October 1927-September 1936, July 1958-December 1964; October 1977-June 1992. 25 cm.

  • Also loose ledger sheets 1952-63. 2 cm.

5.3. Pernatty Pastoral Co. Balance sheets 1919, 1920, 1948-51, 1951-52, 1952-54, 1955-63, 1963-69, 1969-76, 1976-78

5.4. Pernatty Pastoral Co. journal entries 1963-67

5.5. Pernatty Pastoral Co. Statements of account and Income tax returns for July-June 1985-86 and 1986-87

5.6. Pernatty Pastoral Co. Wages lists 1927/28, 1930, July 1968 – June 1976

5.7. Records of contract work on dams, including payments made and measurements of dams. Arranged roughly chronological 1930s-70s

5.8 Bennetts Farmers invoices 1982-83

5.9 Dalgety Bennetts Farmers invoices 1986-87

5.10. Miscellaneous business: extracted from two arch lever folders, contains receipts of expenditure, lists of cheques, stock returns, wages and other business concerns arranged by years 1927-1963

5.11. Corraberra Station ms accounts listings (wages, supplies, stock sales etc) 1937-44

Series 6. Diaries / station records 1.9 m.

6.1. General

Pernatty Station general diaries (A4 format) 1927-1963. Includes daily records of family, visitors and workers at station, and work performed, rainfall and climate. Also names of passengers by the mail coach, numbers of cattle killed, sheep and kangaroo skins sold; sheep and cattle sold and bought, camels, wool clip, sheep sheared etc; station buildings erected With some records of South Gap station.
36 volumes  1.3.m.


  • Small black notebook of W.D. French, Purple Downs, 1902-13 of financial records: supplies account, monies paid, South Gap cattle ear markings, dogs caught: and from rear: monies lent, credit given, goods sold, accounts paid, members of camera raffle, bets and cigarettes owing, cheques drawn South Downs, “grasses sent from Mr Johnson
  • Colts and fillies branded 1921
  • Small red diary with various memoranda 1927-28
  • Small red notebook (some pages damaged): [Diary of] W.D. French, 1904-06
  • Small black notebooks: [Diaries of] W.D. French, South Gap Station, 1906-1909, 1911-1915, 1918-1923
  • Small Souvenir Royal Visit 1954’ notepad with diary entries 1954-57 by ‘Grandad’ (present from Janice)
  • Small black notepad with diary entries 1955-56 by ‘Granpa’ (present from Burlison family)

6.2. Stock

  • Small black notebook [1903-21]: stock book for W.D. French, South Gap / Purple Downs Stations, listing horses (private horses, foals, horses died and broken in), wild dogs caught, sheep counts and movements, calves branded, camels 1903-21, and dam measurements (1909-17)
  • Small black notebook: listing stock at various locations and movements, sale etc of sheep 1921
  • Stock black note book 1922: sheep, cattle, horses, camels / W.D. French
  • Stock red notebook 1923-24 / W.D. French (written in ‘The Sheepman’s Note Book 1914-15’
  • Black notebook: various figures dams, stock, stores etc 1926-39 (mostly blank)
  • Black notebook: Stock Book, South Gap Station 1927 and  Pernatty Station 1928-32
  • Small black notebooks: [Stock book] listing stock at various locations and movements, sale etc of sheep, 1932-42
  • Small red ‘Cooper Note Book 1934-35’ with memoranda re stock, weather, damage from storm etc 1935
  • Small red ‘Cooper Note Book 1934-35’ with memoranda re stock, expenses etc 1936-37
  • Small black diary: in ‘The Quibell Stockowner’s Note Book (Australia) 1936-37’, recording stock, supplies, trip to Miller? Creek, dam measurements etc 1937
  • Small black diary: in ‘The Quibell Stockowner’s Note Book (Australia) 1937-38’, recording stock, wool clips, goods wanted, journeys etc 1939
  • Small red ‘Cooper Note Book 1941-42’ with memoranda re stock, goods wanted etc 1941-43
  • Small black diary: in ‘The Quibell Stockowner’s Note Book (Australia) 1942-43’, recording stock, purchases etc 1944-45,
  • ‘Woods’ Australian Diary for 1941’ containing Stock book Pernatty Station, Conaberra, 1945-66, with various statistics on stock, acreage and wages provided to Police and Government
  • Small black diary: ‘Wanted’ items and stock, and purchases 1950-51, in ‘The Quibell Stockowner’s Note Book (Australia) 1948-49’
  • Brown notebook with red spine: Pernatty Pty Co. Stock book 1955-60 (mostly blank)

6.3. Employees, contractors

  • Black notebook: names of men at meals 1931
  • Black notebook: Shearers mess (names of people at) 1931-40
  • Grey notebook: Contractors 1968 – supplies for (mostly blank)
  • Grey notebook with red spine: Contractors / stores1968-71 – D.L. French (mostly blank)
  • Correspondence 1943 re James Hill, deceased employee
  • Wages records for G.E. [or G.L.?] Meeuwsen ca 1951-52 (began at 15 years of age)
  • Sickness benefit report for Alexander James Watson 1949
  • Income tax records for Colin Walter French 1950-57 and for Mildred Esther French 1966
  • Group employer remittance instalment deduction receipts for Pernatty Pastoral C. June & July 1952

Series 6.4. Shearing / wool sales

  • Memo Book: Shearing 1923
  • Shearers tally books Pernatty Station 1930/31, 1934-38, 1940 & 1944 [ie 1940-45], 1946, 1950, 1951, 1962, plus blank 1956
  • Dalgety Shed Wool Books 1952-53, 1956 x 2
  • Dalgety and Co. Ltd, Adelaide. Wool Sale Priced Catalogues etc
    • Wool Sale no. 2 1927
    • Wool Sale nos. 4 & 8 1928
    • Wool Sale nos. 1-4 1929
    • Wool Sale no. 6 1930 
  • Dalgety and Co. Ltd, Adelaide. Wool Waybills [carbon copies of waybills]
    • 1929 [1 book]
    • 1931 [1 book]
    • 1932 [3 books]
    • 1950 [4 books]
  • Sample of Valleyfield wool grown by R.R. Taylor which realised 210d per lb. at auction sale held at Lauceston, Tas. During February 1949
  • Shearing invoices, Pernatty Station 1942-60 (folder of correspondence etc with Stockbrokers Association of South Australia and Pastoral Shearing Co. Ltd)
  • Form of agreement for shearing between W.D. & A. French and C. Gartner? 1/8/1938
  • Australian Wool Testing Authority certificates 1976
  • Dalgety Bennetts Farmers
    • Account sales of wool sold 1950
    • ms list of Pernatty wool prices [undated]
    • wool bales received for sale 1988
    • 1991 wool sales and test results

Series 6.5. Stores / supplies

  • Pernatty Station Ration a/c ledger 1924-34
  • Folder of invoices / receipts for goods 1927-29
  • The Winplex Pen Carbon Duplicate Book of ‘Goods requested for Pernatty Station a/c W.D. & G. French 1930-31’
  • Ledger listing supplies / stores order for family members and others 1936-40 with label ‘Please do not stick …’ on cover
  • Black notebook: Stamps sold 1936-44
  • Pen carbon duplicate book of goods ordered for Pernatty Station, mainly from Young & Gordon Ltd and Dalgety, 1942-43
  • Pernatty Station Day Book [supplies ordered for family and others] 1946-52
  • Red & white ‘Cash Book’, of wanted supplies 1951 (mostly blank)
  • Triplex carbon copy letterbook of correspondence from W.E.F. French to ‘Jack the Price Slasher Ltd’, Port Augusta West re stores / supplies 1969-76
  • Black notebook with red spine: Stores 1981-93 (mostly blank)
  • Undated notebook ‘Where is it?’: alphabetical supplies with prices

6.6. Rainfall

  • Rainfall records. South Gap 1882-1927; Pernatty Station 1882-1968. Summaries in small blue ring folder by W.E. French 1967
  • School memorandum book containing rainfall records from 1892 to 1927 recorded at South at Station, mostly by W.H. Greenfield
  • Commonwealth Meteorological Bureau Register of rain at Pernatty Station 1928-36, with summary 1928-1950 on rear cover
  • Laminated sheet of rainfall at Pernatty Station 1957

6.7. Dams
Loose sheets recording dam measurements and silt taken at Purple Downs, Roxby Downs, South Gap and Pernatty Stations etcca 1919, 1920, 1922, 1921-45, with some correspondence

See also Series 2: Station Correspondence; Series 5.7. Records of contract work on dams, including payments made and measurements of dams and Series 6.2 Black notebook: various figures dams, stock, stores etc 1926-39 (mostly blank)

6.8. Mining / quarrying

Adelaide & Wallaroo Fertilizers Ltd. Developmental Programme, Mt Gunson … 9/6/1987 [re mining and processing the remnant oxide copper ore at Mount Gunson]

Correspondence re:

  • Highways Memorandum of Agreement to remove road making material … 30/5/1988
  • Dept of Mines and Energy, SA. Application for mining lease over Mineral Claim no. 2268 30/5/1988
  • Dept of Mines and Energy, SA. Application for mining lease over Mineral Claim no. 2325 15/12/1988
  • Dept of Mines and Energy, SA. Application for mining lease over Mineral Claim no. 2326 15/12/1988
  • Adelaide Chemical Co. re mineral and mining lease applications for claims 2325 and 2326 22/12/1988

Series 7. Photographs (IN ALBUM)

7.1. World War I photographs

  • ‘Ollie and Sid taken 19 December 1915, No 2 oasis, Egypt, might easily e taken for King Tommy’ [Aboriginal and white???? Solder in front of tents, b&w photograph 7x5 cm.
  • ‘a snapshot of our camp’ b&w photograph 7x5 cm.
  • [Unidentified soldier] postcard portrait, addressed to Uncle Walder [sic] and family
  • Trooper J.T. Tausell, 9th Light Horse, 3rd Brigade, Base Record, Egypt. Postcard portrait
  • ‘… my pony and myself’ Unidentified soldier with horse, b&w postcard photograph 9x14 cm.
  • [Friend of W.D. French with companion from Herbert River Queensland] Unidentified soldiers in front of tent, b&w postcard photograph 14x9 cm.
  • F.J. Dennis, 16th Reinforcement, 9th Light Horse, Egypt, b&w postcard photograph 14x9 cm.
  • [Unidentified soldier ‘On active service no. 1444] b&w postcard photograph addressed to Dear Walt 14x9 cm.

Photographs from Harrington’s folder

  • 8 photographs of William Henry Greenfield’s funeral and grave, South Gap Station 1922, b&w 7x12 cm. Individual photos depict Jessie Greenfied (widow), George Hutchinson (brother), and grave of Jan French, daughter of T.V. and M. French, died 3 months 192?
  • Cars parked at South Gap Station, Woolshed Cricket Match, Station Hands v Shearers and Shed hands, 1934, b&w photograph 11x7 cm.
  • J.V. French on Grey-Dawn (horse), undated, b&w photograph 8x13 cm.
  • White man with two Aboriginal women and child standing, and Aboriginal man seated, at campsite, with dog and sheep. b&w photograph 11x9 cm.
  • J. French, Willochra, steering plough drawn by 3 horses
  • Agnes and Walt French?, photograph sent with love from Ede & Waltie, b&w photograph 14x9 cm.
  • Walter David French ca 1950s?, b&w photograph 14x9 cm.
  • ‘Jack and our neighbour taken about fortnight before accident September 1954’, b&w photograph 7x9 cm.
  • ‘Jack and one of his dogs’ 1954?, b&w photograph 7x9 cm.

2 photographs from grey envelope

  • Unidentified photograph of portrait [William Henry Greenfield?], b&w photograph 10x8 cm
  • 6 horse drawn dray loaded with sacks, 3 men on dray, ca. 1930s?b&w photograph 8x10 cm.

W.D. French and others

  • Postcard: Bookaloo Railway Station, b&w photograph 9x14 cm.
  • W.D. & S. French in car signed on back “with love from May” 1940s?, b&w photograph 9x14 cm
  • W.D. French(?) in car with older man and boy, b&w photograph 9x14 cm
  • Postcard: man with chickens (2 copies), b&w photograph 9x14 cm

5 photos from white envelope ca 1930s-50s

  • [Sheep in yards] ‘Between Mildura and Wentworth, b&w photograph 9x6 cm
  • ‘Windmill by the house, Witera Stro. … from C. French, December 1956’, b&w photograph 7x9 cm
  • [Pile of sacks] ‘First oats grown at Witera Stn, 1955’, Inscribed ‘To Grandad from Tommy French’, b&w photograph 7x9 cm
  • ‘Arthur, Rozee, Earnie, Martin, W.D. French, Don French, Laboy, Lawrence, Commonwealth Bank 1932’ Inscribed to Grandad from Don, b&w photograph 8x13 cm
  • Bill Coglin, 18 years old, with unidentified man, inscribed To Aunt and Uncle from Bill …, b&w photograph 7x11 cm

From Fujifilm folder

  • 2 photographs of Agnes and Walter French, b&w photograph 10x15 cm
  • Printouts of 12 photographs from Roxby Downs album, featuring
  • Aboriginal workmen skinning sheep; Aboriginal woolshed camp; ‘Barbara Bouch, Meg, NLG “Boss”’; working at sheep runs; Aboriginal men with trucks; Aboriginal riders with camels
  • Aboriginal woman, Zena Ward, with young Christine Merrill, b&w photograph 15x10 cm
  • Aboriginal and white stockman herding sheep, b&w photograph 15x10 cm
  • Penned sheep, b&w photograph 15x10 cm

Larger photographs

  • ‘An Unusual Picture’ Cut out from journal of four generations of Hawker and Gordon region, featuring members of Barnes, Hall and Pearce families
  • Gibson’s Camp Hotel taken voting day 27 May 1905 [A4 printout of b&w photograph with description of Greenfield family settling at South Gap Station] Photograph shows W.D. French and G.H. Greenfield on horseback, and Mr and Mrs W.H. Greenfield standing, among others
  • Bookaloo Tank and constructors [photograph taken of image in journal] ca 1910-20. B&w photograph 13x18 cm.
  • Pernatty Copper Mine and miners [photograph taken of image in journal] ca 1910-20. B&w photograph 13x18 cm.
  • Mount Gunson Copper Mine, 1 ½ miles from Pernatty [photograph taken of image in journal] ca 1910-20. B&w photograph 13x18 cm., with souvenir booklet of Mount Gunson Mines ca 1990s?
  • Pernatty Station showing Walty and Mildred’s home, the office and storeroom, and Walter and Agnes’ homestead. B&w photograph 19x24 cm..
  • Christmas Day at Pernatty Station 1946. Group family photograph, with names. B&w photograph 19x24 cm.
  • ‘The French Brothers …’ John Isaac b. 6/12/1867, Henry James b. 2/11/1872, Walter David b.7/5/1876, Edmund Willie b. 13/2/1878, John Herbert b. 6/5/1880, Octavus Taylor b. 14/3/1883, Thomas Victor 25/5/1887, ca 1940s?. B&w photograph 19x24 cm.
  • ‘16 National Service Training Battalion, B Company, 10 Platoon, 3rd Intake’ group photograph, C.W. French in fifth row, ca 1952. B&w photograph 19x24 cm.


  • Oversize: 30x42 cm. laminated colour photographs produced for display?
  • Shearers’ Quarters, Pernatty Station
  • 2 x vegetation, Pernatty Station
  • 2 x ruins, Old Pernatty
  • Dredger for dams
  • Article “No rest for the contented” / Michelle Daw, Stock Journal? 1982, about Walter French
  • (Not laminated] A3 printout Pernatty Station from hilltop

Series 8: Biographical / Other 25 cm.

8.1. Biographical

William Henry Greenfield
Folder of biographical information compiled by Beth French? Includes:

  • Names of people mentioned in diaries of South Gate (1896-1908) and Purple Downs (1903-1926) Stations, and from logs/correspondence of W.H. Greenfield – includes names of Aboriginal workers
  • Greenfield family tree
  • Copies of letters 1881-1908
  • 1908 lists of wages, ‘Blacks’, Dingoes, and horse breaking from station logs
  • Rainfall records 1882-1915
  • Copies of marriage and birth certificates

Book: “Two Good Men: The Greenfield brothers: northern pioneers of South Australia 1856-1936” / A.J. Greenfield. Published privately January 2003

Printout: “Pernatty: Halcyon Days and Difficult Times. The Story of Agnes and Walter French 1927-1961” by Beth French. [no date] 194 p.
Digital copy available

Newspaper and journal articles, photocopies and printouts of web pages concerning the French and Greenfield families and Pernatty Station. Also list of bores and wells on Pernatty Sation compiled by R.K. Johns in 1968.

8.2 French family memorabilia

Collegiate School of St Peter Adelaide

  • 1922 & 1924 term reports for W.E.S. French
  • Boarder’s cash accounts 1928 for J.D. French and V.T. French
  • Letter to Mum and Dad 1929 from John while boarder

Colin French

  • Home work book, Grade VII (mathematics and drawing)

Ina French

  • Norwood Girls Technical School. Immediate Technical Certificate, Ina A. Henderson 1946
  • South Australian Country Women’s Association. Review of constitution and Quarterly letters / Circulars September & October 1956;
  • Port Augusta Primary School Recipe book. 1973. Includes contributions from Ina French

Beth French

  • The Correspondence School magazine 1958-61, 63-64, 66, 68 (Beth French has contribution in 1958 p. 40)
  • Autograph book ca 1963-64
  • Graph book (primary school?, not dated)
  • Correspondence School. Completed Annual examination papers Grade II 1958, Grade II 1959, and Progress Certificate examination Grade VII 1962. Also Christmas Set Grade VII.
  • Certificates: Correspondence School – Promotion to Grade 5, 1960/61 and Grade 7 1962; Eligible for Secondary School 1963

Roy French

  • Correspondence school / Port Augusta School of the Air workbooks 1970s

Royal Flying Doctor Service Australia.

  • Booklet: ‘Royal Flying Doctor Service Australia.’ Fifth and completely revised edition, 1957.
  • Cookery book / compiled by Royal Flying Doctor Service, Women's Auxiliary of the Air Branch. 195?

A Geography for junior classes / C. Eakins and O. Seymour. Perth: Carroll’s Pty Ltd., n.d.

8.3. Books and publications

Newspaper issue: The Transcontinental Newspaper 15 September 1916

Journal issue: The Adelaide Stock & Station Journal 18 July 1925, 18 January 1928

Guide to South Australian legislation affecting pastoralists / [compiled for Elder, Smith & Co. Limited] 1930      In Law, RB and Roseworthy

Handbook for the man on the land: Waratah wire and wire products / Rylands Brothers (Australia) Ltd., Newcastle [ca 1934]  NOT IN BSL

Everything for the Engineer and the Craftsman / Harris Scarfe, Ltd, Adelaide [192?] [general catalogue]

‘The Australian Farm and Station Handyman’ vols. 1-3 (Adelaide, 1937-39) [2 copies vol. 1]

‘Erection Instructions Cooper Sheep Shower, Model HH’

Random Recollections: autobiographies as told to Ethel M. Jewell. Ca 1988 [Proceeds to Nerrilda Nursing Home, Pt Augusta]

The Stockowner’s Association of South Australia. Jubilee Year 1940: A record of fifty years progress 1890-1940 [1940?]

Stockowners’ Association of South Australia circulars 1947-51

[Brochure for Armstrong Siddeley Sapphire 346] ‘The brilliant new Sapphire’ [1955 – includes Limousine model]

Series 9: Maps (In Map Cabinet)

Pernatty lease area (Dept. of Water, Land and Biodiversity Conservation, printed 2005) Scale: 1:100,000

Pernatty: [management areas based on fence lines] (Dept. of Water, Land and Biodiversity Conservation, printed 2008)

Pastoral Plan Sheets 6 and 13 (undated) 60x45 cm. Mounted on linen

South Gap Station: [hand coloured map showing South Gap boundaries and measurements] (Adelaide: Surveyor General’s Office, ca 1902?) 80x45 cm. Mounted on linen. Plus 2 b&w photocopies

Yeltacowie Station. [Hand drawn sketch map with areas ra/able(?) to the Arcoona Vermin Board marked in red] 26x21 cm.

Yeltacowie Station: [contact print of hand-drawn map] (undated) 70x60 cm. 2 copies

Corunna Station P.L. 2215 [map showing dams, creeks, tanks, wells and bores] 9/1/1970. 40x60 cm. Mounted on linen with wooded rails for hanging

Windabout, S.A. (Royal Australian Survey Corps, 1988) Scale: 1:50,000

Arcoona, S.A. [Air photograph mosaic] (Minister of Lands, 1980) Scale: approx. 1:100,000

Torrens maps

  • [Cut and paste section centred on Pernatty Station] 43x39 cm. undated. Mounted on linen
  • Torrens: [contact print featuring roads and tracks] (undated)
  • [Torrens region vermin fenced district] showing area “proposed to be severed from Lake Torrens vermin fenced district and proclaimed Roxby Downs vermin proofed district” ca 1921-29. 50x60 cm. Mounted on linen. 2 copies (one annotated in red)
  • Torrens: Edition 1 Dept. of National Mapping (Govt. Printer, 1968) Scale 1:250,000
  • Torrens: Edition 1 Australian Surveying & Land Information Group (Govt. Printer, 1969) Scale 1:250,000
  • Torrens: Geological Survey of South Australia (Dept of Mines 1969) Showing Eucolo Creek Rock Engraving site

Olympic Dam Project. [Greenfield Mine] Mine Development Composite Plan 1/1/1986. 900x1180 cm. Scale 1:2,500

Listed by
Cheryl Hoskin
April 2020. 

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