The memoirs of 128 Western Australian seniors have been recorded in a new illustrated book that offers a fascinating insight into life in the 1950s.
Launching ‘Living Histories’ at the Old Swan Brewery today, Seniors Minister Sue Ellery said the 514-page book provided a glimpse of life in the prosperous post-war decade that broke new ground in industry, fashion and politics.
“The 1950s saw, among other things, WA troops sent to war in Korea, a royal tour by Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip, the debut of Dame Edna Everage, and an increase in the basic wage for women,” Ms Ellery said.
“The many seniors involved in the creation of this unique book have had the opportunity to reminisce about these events as well as their own day-to-day lives, including school, popular culture of the time, food, housing and working life.
“The result is a lasting imprint of the 1950s for the younger generations and the whole community. Copies of the book can be ordered from Have a Go News.”
The stories were first collected as part of the inaugural ‘Living Histories’ exhibition last year, in which older people across WA were invited to contribute memories of the 1950s to an audio-visual exhibition at the Fremantle Arts Centre.
Funded by the State Government and sponsored by Have a Go News, the exhibition attracted more than 13,000 people and was so successful that the Department for Communities decided to collate the stories into a commemorative book.
Ms Ellery said a second Living Histories exhibition and commemorative book would be produced this year, with more seniors invited to recount their memories of the 1950s.
“The stories can be about world events that affected them, such as the dawn of television, or can be someone’s personal stories about their holidays, their first experience in the work force or their arrival in WA as a migrant,” the Minister said.
The 2008 exhibition and book will be launched during Seniors Week in October.
Minister's office - 9213 7150