Call to honour heritage of prominent Albany women

Talitha WolfeAlbany Advertiser

Do you know these Albany women?

Noongar elder Janet Hayden and State archivist Margaret Medcalf are among 169 remarkable women inducted into the WA Women’s Hall of Fame.

To ensure the preservation of their achievements, the State Library of Western Australia is seeking donations of material from family, friends and colleagues.

Original photographs, documents, diaries, personal correspondence and records will all help capture the influences these women have had on the economic, social and cultural fabric of WA.

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Ms Hayden was inducted in 2011 for advising a succession of WA governments on Aboriginal affairs.

The respected elder was chairwoman of the State Government Aboriginal Advisory Council and of the Southern Aboriginal Corporation in Albany.

Ms Hayden was integral to establishing the police aid scheme in Perth and the South West. Alongside her husband Aubrey, she provided temporary shelter to about 200 children.

Naidoc week veteran Janet Hayden. Celebrates 50 years of Naidoc. Pic: Sharon Smith. 28 June 2007
Camera IconNaidoc week veteran Janet Hayden. Celebrates 50 years of Naidoc. Pic: Sharon Smith. 28 June 2007 Credit: Sharon Smith/WA News

Ms Medcalf, who was born in Albany in 1926, was inducted into the hall of fame in 2014 for several achievements with the State Library.

After attending school in Albany, Ms Medcalf went on to complete a Diploma of Education at the University of WA before joining the archives branch of the State Library.

It was here she rose to become the State archivist and principal librarian of the Battye Library in 1971.

In 1986, Ms Medcalf was made a Fellow of the Library Association of Australia before retiring in 1989.

Then in 1999, Ms Medcalf received the Order of Australia for services to history.

Contact the State Library’s collection liaison on collection.liaison@slwa.wa.gov.au or call 9427 3111 to assist with the preservation of these extraordinary women during Australian Women’s History Month this month.

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