Ruth Hegarty

Is That You, Ruthie?: First Nations Classics (with an introduction by Jackie Huggins)

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Now included in UQP's First Nations Classics series with an introduction from Jackie Huggins, Is That You, Ruthie? is a remarkable memoir that recounts, with characteristic humour and honesty, a dormitory girl’s life on the Mission.

‘Is that you …?’ Matron’s voice would ring out across the dormitory. In that pause sixty little girls would stop in their tracks, waiting to hear who was in trouble. All too often the name called out would be that of the high-spirited dormitory girl Ruthie.

In the Depression years, Queensland’s notorious Cherbourg Aboriginal Mission became home to four-year-old Ruth until her late teens when she was sent out to serve as a domestic on a station homestead. Ruthie is the central character in this lively and candid memoir of institutional life. Her milestones and memories reflect the experiences of many dormitory girls. The strong and lasting bonds that developed between them all helped to compensate for family love and support denied them by the government's disruptive removal policy.

An inspiring life story, this remarkable memoir won the David Unaipon Award in 1998.

Author: Ruth Hegarty

Paperback Published 4 June 2024 168 pages

An ode to the girls she grew up with in Cherbourg, so the nation could not ignore their story.ABC News

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