AWW texts online 1840-1940

The following list provides links to texts by well-known and forgotten Australian women writers of the 19th and early 20th centuries which are available either to be read online or for download. They are organised alphabetically by author in decade of publication.

Note: For purposes of this list “Australian” is defined loosely and may include authors who wrote books while living in Australia, or who wrote books set in Australia. Many of these text were found in the Colonial Australian Popular Fiction: A Digital Archive (CAPF) and bibliographical details and genre are taken from that archive. (Note: the archivists’ definitions of “romance” might differ from contemporary views.) Links to author names where given are to the CAPF archive, unless otherwise indicated; links to online texts are either to that archive, to pdf versions from the University of Sydney Digital Archive, Project Gutenberg or elsewhere as found. If you find other texts for this list, or better links to any of the books listed below, please let us know via the contact page.

You can either go to a dedicated page for the decade(s) or see the complete list below.

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1840s

Vidal, Marie Theresa, Tales for the Bush (1845)

1850s

Atkinson, Louisa*, Gertrude the Emigrant: A Tale of Colonial Life, J R Clarke, Sydney 1857.

—–. Cowanda, the Veteran’s Grant: An Australian Story, J R Clarke, Sydney 1859.

Franc, Maud Jeanne.** Marian; or, The Light of Someone’s Home, A Tale of Australian Bush Life. Alfred Waddy, 1859. Note: ‘Marian’ was the first novel by a South Australian woman to be published in SA and the first novel set wholly in SA.

Leakey, Caroline W, The Broad Arrow: Being Passages from the History of Maida Gwynnham, a Lifer (1859)

Spence, Catherine Helen,** Clara Morison : A Tale of South Australia during the Gold Fever (1854)

—–. Tender and True: a colonial tale (in 2 volumes) (1856)

Vidal, Marie Theresa, The Convict Laundress (1852)

1860s

Davidson, Harriet Miller,*** Isobel Jardine’s History (1867) (on Google Play)

Davitt, Ellen, Force and Fraud (1865) – available from Clan Destine Press. Australia’s first mystery novel.

Franc, Maud Jeanne, aka Matilda Jane Congreve (Birth name) and Matilda Jane Evans (married name), Marian, or, the light of someone’s home : a tale of Australian bush life (1868)

Massary, Isabel aka Ramsay-Laye, Elizabeth, Social life and manners in Australia: being the notes of eight years’ experience, Longman, Green, Longman and Roberts, London, 1861, 209 pp.

Parkes, Clarinda** aka Menie Parkes. Poems (1866)

Selby, Elizabeth aka Bess of the Forest, the Lincolnshire Lass, Long Bay (Sydney, 1865?), 64 pp. downloadable as pdf

Spence, Catherine Helen,** Hogarth’s will, 3 vols (Richard Bentley, London, 1865) downloadable as pdf

—–. The Author’s Daughter (1867)

Vidal, Marie Theresa, Bengala, or, Some Time Ago (1860)

1870s

Baker, Hannah Newton, Sketches of Australian Life and Scenery, Sampson Low, Marston, Searle and Rivington, London, 1876, 350 pp. downloadable as pdf

—–. Frank Carey: a story of Victorian life, Sampson Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington, London, 1877. downloadable as pdf

Bode, Ettie aka Bode, Mrs. J. A., ‘The Islander‘, in Hopkins, F. R. C (ed.), The Australian Ladies’ Annual, M’Carron, Bird & Co., Melbourne, 1878, pp. 53-63. short story

Caffyn, Kathleen; Caffyn, Mrs Mannington aka Iota (romance) Kooroona : A Tale of South Australia  (1871)

Hill, Cecilia, The Three Troopers‘, in Hopkins, F. R. C (ed.), The Australian Ladies’ Annual, M’Carron, Bird & Co., Melbourne, 1878, pp. 32-43.

Manning, Emily, Cupid on a Swiss Tour: or Pictures among the Snow Mountains. A Story for Girls (1874) Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

Mathers, Helen, Cherry Ripe! : a romance, George Robertson and Co., Melbourne, 1878, 439 pp.

Meredith, Louisa Ann:  Meredith, L. A., To My Husband‘, in Hopkins, F. R. C (ed.), The Australian Ladies’ Annual, M’Carron, Bird & Co., Melbourne, 1878, pp. 13-14.

Merson, Mary J. aka Mrs M J M, Emily Graham; or, The Dawning of light: a temperance tale, James Curtis, Caxton, Ballarat, 1870, 299 pp.

Scott, Maria Jane** aka M.I.S.T and Spray (children’s fiction), Not So Ugly (1871)

Stanley, Effie.** The Wilmots: A South Australian Story (1877)

1880s

Cambridge, Ada, A Mere Chance Vol 1 (1882)

—–. A Mere Chance Vol 2 (1882)

—–. A Mere Chance Vol 3 (1882)

Dugdale, Henrietta Augusta,* A Few Hours in a Far-Off Age (1883) links to pdf

Couvreur, Jessie aka Tasma (romance), Uncle Piper of Piper’s Hill: an Australian novel, Trübner & Co, London, 1889, 348 pp

 Franc, Maud Jeanne, John’s Wife (1888)

—–. Hall’s Vineyard (1888)

—–. Golden Gifts: An Australian Tale (1883?)

—–. No Longer A Child (1882?)

Lewis, Harriet (Mrs), The Buried Legacy (1886) Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

Lockett, Jeannie,**** The Millwood Mystery (1886) Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

—–. Awfully Sudden Death (1887) Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

—–. The Garston House Tragedy (1888) Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

Meredith, Louisa Anne, Nellie, or, Seeking Goodly Pearls (1882)

Pitman, Emma Raymond, Florence Godfrey’s Faith, a story of Australian life, Blackie & Son, London, 1883, 309 pp.

Praed, Mrs Campbell aka Rosa Caroline Praed (romance and gothic), An Australian Heroine (1880): list of ebook versions available here

—–. Policy and Passion (1881)

—–. Nadine: The Study of a Woman Vol 1 and Vol 2 (1882)

—–. Moloch : A Story of Sacrifice (in several volumes) (1883)

—–. Zero : A Story of Monte Carlo (in 3 volumes) (1884)

—–. Affinities : A Romance of To-Day (1885)

—–. Australian Life: Black and White (London: Chapman and Hall,1885)

—–. The Head Station : A Novel of Australian Life Vol 1 and Vol 2 (1885)

—–. Miss Jacobsen’s Chance: A Story of Australian life (1886)

—–. The Soul of Countess Adrian: A Romance (1888)

—–. The Romance of a Station (1889)

—– co-authored with Justin McCarthy, The Right Honourable : A Romance of Society and Politics (1887)

—– co-authored with Justin McCarthy, The Rebel Rose : A Novel (1888)

—– co-authored with Justin McCarthy, The Ladies’ Gallery : A Novel (1888)

Spence, Catherine Helen,** Gathered In: a novel (1881). Also for download here.

—–. An Agnostic’s Progress, from the Known to the Unknown (1884)

—-. A Week in the Future (1889). Also for download here.

Welch, Sarah, Mr Fumecrab’s Breakfast-Table Lectures (1881) pdf downloaded here.

1890s

Baker, Louisa Alice  aka Alien, The untold half, Hutchinson & Co., London, 1899, 406 pp. downloadable as pdf

Blitz, Mrs A. (Julia), An Australian millionaire, Ward, Lock & Bowden, London, 1894, 498 pp. downloadable as pdf

Caffyn, Kathleen aka Caffyn, Mrs Mannington and Iota (romance), A comedy in spasms, Hutchinson, London, 1895, 282 pp.

Cambridge, Ada, The Three Miss Kings (1891)

—–. Not all in Vain (1892)

—–. Materfamilias (1898)

Chads, Ellen Augusta (romance), Tracked by bushrangers : and other stories : together with, Work for the Master : a series of papers for women, George Robertson and Co. , Melbourne, 1891, 95 pp.

Couvreur, Jessie aka Tasma (romance), A Sydney Sovereign and Other Tales, Trübner & Co, London, 1890, 219 pp.

—–. In Her Earliest Youth (1890)

—–. The penance of Portia James, William Heinemann, London, 1891, 293 pp.

—–. Not Counting the Cost (1891)

Field, Catherine Eliza Somerville: aka Parker, K. Langloh, Australian legendary tales, Melville, Mullen & Slade, Melbourne, 1896, 132 pp.

Fisher, Mary Lucy (Lala), (ed.), By creek and gully : stories and sketches mostly of bush life, told in prose and rhyme, by Australian writers in England, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1899, 308 pp.

Gaunt, Mary, Dave’s Sweetheart, Melville, Mullen and Slade, Melbourne, 1894, 264 pp.

—–. The Moving Finger (London: Methuen, 1895) short story

—–. Kirkham’s Find (1897)

—–. Deadman’s, Methuen, London, 1898, 304 pp.

Hardwicke, Elizabeth, The Cost of an Error (1897). Download pdf here.

Knowles, Marion Miller aka Marion Mille, Barbara Halliday: a story of the hill country of Victoria, George Robertson and Co., Melbourne, 1896, 320 pp.

Lawson, Louisa (unknown publication date, Dert” and “Do, Dawn Newspaper Office, Sydney, 107 pp. [1890-99?]

Lockett, Jeannie,**** The Case of Dr. Hilston (1890) Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

Osmond, Sophie,** Dulgabeena : an Australian story (1894)

Mack, Louise (romance), Teens: A Story of Australian School Girls (1897)

—–. Girls Together, Angus & Robertson, Sydney, 1898, 226 pp.

Manning, Emily, The Story of a Royal Pendulum (1890). Available serialised on TROVE (chapter 1 here but text needs lots of work)

Martin, Catherine (romance, An Australian girl, Richard Bentley and son, London, 1891, 474 pp.

—–. The Silent Sea (1892)

Martin, Harriet Anne aka Martin, Mrs Patchett (ed.), Coo-ee : tales of Australian life, by Australian ladies, Griffith Farran Okeden & Welsh, London, 1891?, 318 pp.

Nelson, Harriet Arnold, The Romance of the Greystones, An Australian Story, Ward, Lock & Co., London, 1899, 314 pp.

Praed, Mrs Campbell aka Rosa Caroline Praed (romance and gothic), December Roses: A Novel (1892).

—–. The Romance of a Chalet: A Story (1892)

—–. Christina Chard : A Novel (2 versions available) (1893)

—–. Outlaw and Lawmaker (in 3 volumes) (1893)

—–. The Romance of a Station: An Australian Story (London: Chatto and Windus, 1893) – available as pdf

—–. Mrs Tregaskiss : A Novel of Anglo-Australian Life (1895)

—–. Nulma (1897)

—–. The Scourge-Stick (1898)

—–. Madame Izan: A Tourist Story (1899) available as pdf

Quin, Teth aka Quinn, Ethel, The well-sinkers : an Australian pastoral, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1899, 224 pp.

Rawson, Wilhelmina Frances aka Mrs Lance Rawson, The Bushman’s Rest‘, in Martin, Mrs Patchett (ed.), Coo-ee : tales of Australian life, by Australian ladies, Griffith Farran Okeden & Welsh, London, 1891?, pp. 177-256.

Richmond, Lily, Sally : a Sydney tale, in three parts, George Robertson and Co., Melbourne, 1897, 321 pp.

Thomas, Margaret, The Story of a Photograph, in Martin, Mrs Patchett (ed.), Coo-ee : tales of Australian life, by Australian ladies, Griffith Farran Okeden & Welsh, London, 1891?, pp. 257-270.

—–. To My Cigarette‘, in Fisher, Lala (ed.), By creek and gully : stories and sketches mostly of bush life, told in prose and rhyme, by Australian writers in England, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1899, pp. 163-166.

—–. Struck Gold‘, in Fisher, Lala (ed.), By creek and gully : stories and sketches mostly of bush life, told in prose and rhyme, by Australian writers in England, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1899, pp. 75-84.

Turner, Ethel.** The Story of a Baby (1895)

Waterhouse, Jessie Mabel, For Marjory’s Sake: a story of South Australian country life (1893) on iTunes here.

1900s

Andrews, Mrs T. R. aka Andrews, Katherine E., Stephen Kyrle: an Australian story, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1901, 383 pp.

Aston, Matilda Ann aka Aston, Tilly, The woolinappers : or, some tales from the by-ways of Methodism, Spectator Publishing Co., Melbourne, 1905, 104 pp.

Baker, Hannah Newton, Wytha Wytha: a tale of Australian life, Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1903, 277 pp. downloadable as pdf

Bayne, Mary Addams, Bluegrass and wattle, or, The man from Australia, Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, 1909, 305 pp. (downloadable as pdff)

Baynton, Barbara (gothic fiction), Bush Studies, Duckwork, London, 1902, 155 pp.

Boyne, Mabel, That Australian family, Batson & Co., Sydney, 1907, 198 pp. downloadable as pdf

Bright, Annie, A Soul’s Pilgrimage, George Robertson and Co., Melbourne, 1907, 296 pp.

Cambridge, Ada, The retrospect (1909)

—–. Thirty Years in Australia (1903)

—–. Sisters (1904)

Franc, Maud Jeanne, aka Matilda Jane Congreve (Birth name) and Matilda Jane Evans (married name), Vermont Vale: Or Home pictures in Australia (190?)

Fullerton, Mary Eliza aka “Owen Roe O’Neill”, “L”, Joseph Marizeeni (poetry), Bark House Days (1921)

—–. The breaking furrow: verses (Melbourne: S. J. Endacott, 1921)

—–. Moods and melodies: sonnets and lyrics (Melbourne: T.C. Lothian, 1908) Downloadable as pdf here (warning: it may download automatically)

Geach, Edwina Catherine, From the Soul of the Ti-tree, Lothian, Melbourne, 1909, 94 pp.

Knowles, Marion Miller aka Marion Miller, Shamrock and Wattle Bloom: a series of short tales and sketches, Edgerton and Moore, Melbourne, 1900, 208 pp.

Lancaster, G. B. aka Lyttleton, Edith Joan, A spur to smite, Andrew Melrose, London, 1905, 123 pp. Downloadable here.

Luffmann, Laura Bogue, An Elderly Romance‘, in Charleton, W. R. (ed.), The Red kangaroo and other Australian short stories, John Fairfax and Sons, Sydney, 1907, pp. 40-45.

—–. ‘Seen in the Biograph‘, in Charleton, W. R. (ed.), The Red kangaroo and other Australian short stories, John Fairfax and Sons, Sydney, 1907, pp. 232-238.

Mordaunt, Elinor aka Mordaunt, Evelyn May, The garden of contentment, Heinemann, London, 1902, 240 pp.

Palmer-Archer, Laura M, A Bush Honeymoon and Other Stories, T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1904, 350 pp.

Praed, Mrs Campbell aka Rosa Caroline Praed (romance and gothic), Fugitive Anne: A Romance of the Unexplored Bush (London: J. Long, 1902) 428 pp. Available as pdf

—–. My Australian Girlhood: Sketches and impressions of bush life, Fisher Unwin, London, 1904, 270 pp.

—–. The Maid of the River, John Long, London, 1905.

—–. The Luck of the Leura, John Long, London, 1907.

—–. A Summer Wreath, Long, London, 1909, 317 pp.

Richardson, Henry Handel,* Maurice Guest (1908)

Turner, Lilian,** An Australian Lassie (1903-05 or 1910)

1910s

Aimir, Noel aka Marie Lion, The black pearl, George Robertson and Co., Melbourne, 1911, 244 pp.

Boake, Capel aka Doris Boake Kerr, Painted clay, Australasian Authors’ Agency, Melbourne, 1917, 343 pp.

Boldrewood, Rose aka Browne, Rose Christiana Angell (Birth name), The Complications at Collaroi, John Ouseley, London, 1911, 304 pp.

Bruce, Mary Grant,* A Little Bush Maid (1910)

—–. Mates at Billabong  (1912)

—–. Back To Billabong (1914)

—–. Captain Jim  (1916)

—–. ‘Possum (1917)

Deamer, Dulcie,* The Suttee of Safa: A Hindoo romance (1913)

Downes, Marion Grace (romance), Swayed by the Storm : a story of Australia to-day, Thomas C. Lothian, Melbourne, 1911, 264 pp.

Gaunt, Mary, A Broken Journey: Wanderings from the Hoang-Ho to the Island of Saghalien and the Upper Reaches of the Amur River (London: T. W. Laurie Ltd., ca.1919) multiple formats here.

—–. A wind from the wilderness (London: T. W. Laurie, ltd., [1919]

—–. A Woman in China (London: T Werner Laurie, c. 1914) multiple formats here.

—–. Alone in West Africa (New York: C. Scribner’s Sons; London: T. W. Laurie, ca. 1912) multiple formats here.

—–. The Ends of the Earth, T.( Werner Laurie, London, 1916) 237 pp

Harper, Edith Alice Mary,** writing as Anna Wickham aka John Oland, The man with a hammer: verses (London: G. Richards, 1916) Downloadable here.

—–. The contemplative quarry [1917]; and, The man with a hammer [1916] (New York: Harcourt, Brace, and co., 1921) available here.

Howson, May Isabel, Love’s sacrifice (founded on facts). A book for the trenches. Depicting undying love, Imperial Press, Melbourne, 1917, 199 pp.

Mack, Louise (romance), The Romance of a Woman of Thirty, Rivers, London, 1911, 374 pp.

Osmond, Sophie,** An Australian Wooing (1916)

Praed, Mrs Campbell; aka Praed, Rosa Caroline (romance and gothic), Lady Bridget in the Never-Never Land: a story of Australian Life (1915)

Quin, Tarella aka (married name) Tarella Daskein (romance), Kerno: a stone, William Heinemann, London, 1914, 283 pp.

—–. Paying Guests, Lothian Book Publishing, Melbourne, 1917, 311 pp.

Richardson, Henry Handel,* The Getting of Wisdom (1910)

—–. Australia Felix (1917) (Vol 1 of The Fortunes of Richard Mahony)

—–. The Fortunes of Richard Mahony (1917)

 

1920s

Ansted, Josephine, The son of the bondwoman, H. G. Forster, Sydney, 1925, 380 pp.

Cross, Zora Bernice May, An introduction to the study of Australian literature  (Sydney : Teachers’ College Press: Angus & Robertson, 1922) text downloadable here.

Deamer, Dulcie,* Revelation: A Romance (1922)

Forrest, Mabel, Gaming gods: a novel, Hutchinson, London, 1926, 280 pp.

—–. Hibiscus Heart, Hutchinson, London, 1927, 287 pp.

Fullerton, Mary Eliza aka “Owen Roe O’Neill”, “L”, Joseph Marizeeni, Bark House Days (1921)

—–. The breaking furrow: verses (Melbourne: S. J. Endacott, 1921)

Gaunt, Mary, The surrender: and other happenings (London: T. Werner Laurie [1920])

—–. As the whirlwind passeth, Murray, London, 1923, 314 pp.

Grimshaw, Beatrice, Queen Vaiti, N.S.W. Bookstall Co., Sydney, 1920, 168 pp.

Gwynne, Agnes M, The mystery of lakeside house, Robertson & Mullens, Melbourne, 1925, 166 pp.

Harper, Edith Alice Mary,** writing as Anna Wickham aka John Oland, The little old house: [poems] (London: Poetry Bookshop, 1921). Downloadable here. See also, New and Selected Poems of Anna Wickham Edited by Nathanael O’Reilly (UWAP, 2017)

Knowles, Marion Miller aka Marion Miller, Meg of “Minadong”, Edward A. Vidler, Melbourne, 1926, 221 pp.

—–. Pretty Nan Hartigan, Pellegrini, Melbourne, 1928, 213 pp.

—–. Pierce O’Grady’s daughter: an Australian story, Pellegrini & Co., Melbourne, 1928, 308 pp.

Mulry, Mary Egan,** The nobleman jackaroo, Simpson, Halligan & Co., Brisbane, 1927, 152 pp.

Richardson, Henry Handel,* The Way Home (1925)

—–. Ultima Thule (1929)

Simpson, Mary, Tell-tale stories from the bulletin, Edward A. Vidler, Melbourne, 1926, 91 pp

Stevens, Janie M, The mad painter and other bush sketches, Edward A. Vidler, Melbourne, 1926, 110 pp.

 

1930s

Aston, Matilda Ann aka  Aston, Tilly, Old timers : sketches and word pictures of the old pioneers, Lothian Publishing Co., Melbourne, 1938, 148 pp.

Baily, Elsie Marion, The Chains of Yesterday, published 4 May 1935 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

—–. Outcast of Eden, Johnson, Sydney, 1933, 252 pp. (downloadable as pdf)

Birkett, Winifred.** Three Goats on a Bender, published 29 October 1938 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Bridges, Hilda.** The House With the Black Blinds, published 4 December 1930 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Chadwick, Dorothy.** Young April, published 26 Feb 1938 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Drake-Brockman, Henrietta.** The Disquieting Sex, serialised in Table Talk 1930 (first chapter); republished in The Swan Express 20 June 1946 and available on TROVE (first chapter).

Ercole, Velia. (aka Margaret Gregory) ** Marriage Made On Earth, published 10 June 1939 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Gregory, Ada Leonora, The clouded dream : a story of two incarnations, J.R. Price, Melbourne, 1938, 18 pp. Downloadable here.

Grimshaw, Beatrice.** My South Sea Sweetheart, published 14 May 1938 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Heney, L.A.B.** [Lucy Amy Beatrice] The Shadow Tree, published 29 January 1938 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Lancaster, G. B. aka Lyttleton, Edith Joan, Pageant, Endeavour Press, Sydney, 1933, 407 pp. Downloadable here.

Liston, Ellen , Pioneers: stories, E.A. Harwood, Hassell Press, Adelaide, 1936, 190 pp

Morris, Myra.** Wind on the Water, published 28 October 1939 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Neville, Margot.** [aka sisters Margot Goyder and Ann Joske] Jenifer’s Husband, published 2 January 1937 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE. Detective story.

—–. Marietta is Stolen, published 31 July 1937 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE. Detective story.

Powell, Elizabeth. In the Path of Thunder, published 8 October 1938 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

—–. The Fathers Have Eaten, published 4 February 1939 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Richardson, Henry Handel,* The Young Cosima (1939)

Roughley, Edna.** Footsteps, published 13 April 1935 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

—–. Isn’t Life Queer?, published 24 November 1934 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

Simpson, Helen, Boomerang, William Heinemann, London, 1932, 506 pp.

—–. The woman on the beast: viewed from three angles, William Heinemann, London, 1933, 492 pp.

—–. Under Capricorn, William Heinemann, London, 1937, 305 pp.

 

1940s

Birkett, Winifred.** Earth’s Quality, published 4 May 1940 as an Australian Women’s Weekly novel and available on TROVE.

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* Links to the Australian Dictionary of Biography online
** Links to AustLit
*** Links to Wiki
**** Links to VictoriaResearch.org

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