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This website uses words, photos and objects from people who spent time growing up in children’s homes, orphanages and other ‘care’ institutions.

These pages feature personal contributions to the National Museum of Australia’s Inside exhibition. They tell only a small part of each person’s story.

Anthony R

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'I had been told my mother dumped me into an orphanage in UK yet she wrote me a letter every month and the Brothers hid them in a shoe box, under the instructions of the child welfare department', attributed to 'Anthony R, Clontarf Boys Town, Waterford, Western Australia, 1950'.

Lucy Bartholomew

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'I just want someone to know, there was a good' home and I was lucky enough to be in it', attributed to 'Lucy Bartholomew, Home of the Good Shepherd, Michelton, Queensland, 1950s'.

Peter Bent

Polaroid photograph showing two boys on a waterway. The boy in the foregrounds sits in a canoe, paddling with his hands. Another boy stands on a raft at the rear. Typewritten text below reads 'Boys from Clontarf Boys Town, Waterford, Western Australia, with homemade 'canoes' on the Swan River, 1950s'. 'Courtesy Peter Bent' is typed along the left side.

Julie Braddock

A colour Polaroid photograph showing two women holding out white shirts with protest slogans written in black felt pen. The woman on the right's shirt reads 'ABUSED NEGLECTED WHILE IN STATE CARE' and the words 'ROYAL COMMISSION' are partially visible on her trousers. The woman on the right's shirt reads 'WHY ARE WE STILL FORGOTTEN'. Typewritten text under the photos reads: 'Kristina Tucker (left) and Julie Braddock wearing their protest clothing at the Canberra march marking the first anniversary of the National Apology to the Forgotten Australians and Former Child Migrants, November 2010'. 'photograph by George Serras, National Museum of Australia' is printed on the left.

Peter Brownbill

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'Circa 1953, I was charged a ward of the state, and remained so until 1970 ... Between these benchmarks, I lived a life outside the normal experience of the average Australians, male or female' attributed to 'Peter Brownbill, 'Orphans of the Living', by Joanna Penglase, 2005'.

Dilys Budd

Paper tag with the text: HEAR DILYS BUDD TALK ABOUT HER EXPERIENCES AT ST JOSEPH’S GIRLS’ ORPHANAGE, SUBIACO, WESTERN AUSTRALIA, IN THE 1940s / recorded in 2010, duration: 5 minutes 20 seconds, National Library of Australia.’

Graham Budd

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'Breakfast, plate of porridge with milk but no sugar, two rounds of bread and dripping, one glass of milk ... Dinner, mutton stew with rice [pudding] and tapioca, alternate days except Sunday when it was dried apricots and custard ... Evening meal at 5 pm. Two rounds bread and dripping, two rounds bread and jam ... The meals never varied the three years I was there as far as I remember', attributed to 'Graham Budd, Northcote Farm School, Bacchus Marsh, Victoria, 1940s'.

Pamela Buss

Exhibition graphic panel that reads: 'I got shock treatment in Goodna Psychiatric Hospital ... I wasn’t even 12. I wasn’t psychotic or anything I was just sticking up for younger children … After shock treatment your eyes are all rolled up … There was no anaesthetic', attributed to 'Pamela Buss, Tufnell Home, Nundah, Queensland, 1960s'.
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