ACT Heritage Library Manuscript Collection

HMSS 0166 Eddison Family Papers

Scope and Content Notes

Call Number

HMSS 0166

Collection 

Eddison Family Papers

Date Range

1888-1943

Quantity

1.14m (2 manuscript boxes; 1 oversized object)

Access Conditions

open

Copying Conditions

with attribution

Related Collections

HMSS 0450 Anthony Hill Author Papers

HMSS 0278 Oaks Estate Community History Papers

Walter Herbert Eddison travelled to Australia in 1913 looking for a new future for his young family which he left behind in Hampshire, England.

Soon after arriving World War One was declared and Walter joined the Australian Light Horse in the 56th Battalion, serving in both Gallipoli and on the Somme. His final rank was that of Captain.

Walter Herbert Eddison returned to Australia in 1919 with his wife Marion Louisa and their four children, Frank Leslie Herbert "Tom", Diana, Edward Dalkeith "Keith" and Jack Obaldeston, and Marion. In 1920 he took up 1400 acres (block 28) in the ACT, which he named Yamba, as part of the Soldier Settlement Scheme. Yamba occupied most of the Woden Valley and is commemorated by the Southern Cross Club's Sports Club, The Yamba Club, which stands near where the homestead was. Eddison Park near Woden Cemetery also commemorates the family.

From 1920 until 1928, the family lived at The Oaks’, Oaks Estate ACT, while the Woden property was being developed. Marion's uncle, Jack Obaldeston purchased the house and 20 acres for her.

The Yamba house was built in 1927 from materials leftover from the construction of St Gabriel's School (later Canberra Girls' Grammar School). The family moved onto Yamba in April 1928. They farmed the property until 1953, growing oats, lucerne, sheep and cattle, as well as raising horses, which was a passion of Walter's. 

The couple's last two children, Pamela and Marion were born in Australia.

The children were educated locally, the boys at Canberra Grammar School, the girls at St Gabriel's School (later Canberra Girls' Grammar School).  

During World War Two, all three of Walter and Marion's sons, Frank Leslie Herbert "Tom" EddisonEdward Dalkeith "Keith" Eddison and Jack Obaldestone Eddison, joined the armed forces and all three paid the supreme sacrifice. They are honoured on the ACT Memorial. With the death of their sons, Walter and Marion Eddison moved to the suburb of Deakin in 1953, selling Yamba to Dick Hyles.

Marion Douglas, nee Eddison, the family's youngest daughter, and her daughter Fionna Douglas, wrote about her family and other Soldier Settlers in the Woden and Weston areas in the book, Not Without My Corsets! : Oral histories of the families who farmed soldier settler blocks in the Woden Valley from 1920-1963.

Box List

Box No.

Description

QTY

Date Range

1

Oxford High School for Boys - Letter re Walter Eddison from A. Wilson Cave (Headmaster), Oxford School for Boys

1

27 February 1888

Oxford High School for Boys - Term Report for Walter Herbert Eddison

2

Christmas 1887;
7 April 1888

1

Telegram to Walter Eddison concerning war service

1

16 Sept 1918

Leave or Duty Ration Book for Captain W H Eddison 

1

03 October 1919

1

Invoice to Walter Eddison from W G Gumley for hours worked

1

13 April 1918

Newscuttings from Canberra Times "Flt. Lieut. Eddison killed in Air Operations in New Guinea


1


4 June 1943

Newscuttings from Canberra Times "Memorial Tablet unveiled to three Eddison brothers

 

14 June 1948 

Ephemera - Program for ANZAC Day Commemoration Service, Australian War Memorial, Canberra

1

24 April 1943

Ephemera - Letterhead of National Equestrian Park War Memorials Fund of which Walter Eddison was a member

1

Nd.

Ephemera - Tea and Butter Ration Card for Svetoza Stanojevic at Camp Bonegilla, Victoria 

1

1949 

Ephemera - Miniature edition of The Sydney Morning Herald 

09 May 1910 

1

Photographs - Walter Herbert Eddison on board ship bound for overseas service WWI

2

ca 1914

Photographs - Philip Champion with large fish at Cotter?

1

Nd

Photographs - Keith “Grumpy” Eddison on active service WWII

4

Ca 1943

1

Correspondence of Jack Eddison while overseas - Letters from Jack to family and friends in Australia. Jack served in the Palestine Police 1934-1936 and the Royal Air Force 1936-1943. He died 7 June 1943 aged 29 years, of illness while POW, at Naoetsu POW Camp, Yokohama, Japan. These letters have been transcribed and published as the book Letters home : from Leslie Herbert (Tom) Eddison D.F.C. to his family at Yamba, Cotter Road, Federal Capital Territory, Australia : Palestine Police 1934-1936, Royal Air Force 1936-1941, compiled by Penelope Wilkins.

5 files

1934-ca 1943

1

Correspondence of Keith Eddison - Photocopies of letters from Keith Eddison to family and friends in Australia while on active service

1 file

1939-1943

1

Leases File - Includeds correspondence and invoices relating to “Yamba” and family held crown leases in the Cooma area

1 file

1947-1951

1

File regarding Yamba - Includes research notes on the lease and other soldier settler blocks from files at the National Archives of Australia; correspondence concerning the sale of “Yamba” 1954-1955; notebook 1951-1952; notebook concerning stock purchases and sale for Yamba 1934-1949

1 file

1934-1955

1

Newscuttings concerning 1952 bushfires

1 file

1952

1

Research notes on Soldier Settler Blocks in Woden Area? Notes by Marion Douglas, nee Eddison

1 file

nd

1

Oral History. Transcription of parts of interviews by George Dick relating to reminiscencses of of war service with Keith “Grumpy” Eddison. Interviews with Col Harvey, Maurice Ball, Chas Harris, Doug Raffen, Don Miller, Keith Nicholson, Hal Kelly, George Carnegie and Bob Bennett

1 file

nd

 2Eddison Family - Graziers Association of NSW, membership contribution request 13 August 1941; newscuttings concerning wedding of Pam Eddison to Robert Hancock, deaths of Marion Eddison and Diana Prance, nee Eddison, memorial tablet for Eddison brothers at St John's Church Reid, history of local place name "Weston Creek", history of Tuggeranong Homestead, memorial for Desert Mounted Corps, AIF in Singapore in World War II; three black and white photographs of Yamba Homestead ca. 1940s.1 file  1940s
 2Jack Obaldeston Eddison - photograph of grave stone at Yokohama Cemtery, July 1995 for  Private J O Eddison; photograph of name of J O Eddison on a Ballarat War Graves Memorial February 2003;  envelope to Mrs W.H. Eddison from J O  Eddison from Prisoner of War Camp, Tokyo;  Notice of proceedings before Local Land Board, Notice to attend to MR W.H. Eddison, 1948;  2 Letters to W.H. Eddison Esq. Concerning death and estate of J O Eddison; final statement of account for deceased member, JO Eddison1 file  1940s
 3 (oversized)Certificate - Invalided from service, Captain W.H. Eddison, 18 February 1920. On Exhibition mount 1920