Australian Women's Register

An initiative of The National Foundation for Australian Women (NFAW) in conjunction with The University of Melbourne

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    Lillias Skene, courtesy of Champions of the Impossible, NCW Victoria.
    Details

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  • Stirrers with Style! Presidents of the National Council of Women of Australia and its predecessors
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Skene, Lillias Margaret (1867 - 1957)

MBE

Born
28 March 1867
Smythesdale, Victoria, Australia
Died
25 March 1957
Armadale, Victoria, Australia
Occupation
Farmer, Women's rights activist, Women's rights organiser and Welfare worker
Alternative Names
  • Hamilton, Lillias Margaret

Summary

Lillias Skene was a prominent member of numerous women's groups and social welfare organisations in Melbourne from the early 1900s into the 1940s. She intially focussed on philanthropic work, but from the 1920s she devoted most of her energies to the Red Cross and the National Council of Women of Victoria. She was present at the inaugural meeting of the British (Australian) Red Cross on 25 August 1914 and was a member of the Victorian council from about 1920 until 1941. She became assistant-secretary of the National Council of Women in 1914, honorary secretary in 1916, vice-president in 1921 and president in 1924. In this year she also became foundation president of the federal council of the various State-based National Councils of Women.

Details

Lilias Skene was born in 1867 at Smythesdale, Victoria. She married David Skene, a sheepmaster, in 1888 and they had 4 children. The family moved several times, at one time running a dairy in Manly, before moving to Melbourne in 1906. Soon after this she joined several philanthropic and reform organisations included the Charity Organisation Society, the Lady Talbot Milk Institute and represented the Guild of Play on the National Council of Women of Victoria until the 1920s. For thiry years, from 1919, she was honorary secretary of the Women's Hospital Committee's board of management. In 1927 she became one of the first seven women Justices of the Peace in Victoria and played an active role in the Women Justices Association.

Events

1927 -
Membership - Victorian Nursing Board
1929 -
Membership - State Relief Committee

Sources used to compile this entry: Smart, Judith, 'Skene, Lillias Margaret (1867 - 1957)', in Australian Dictionary of Biography Online, Australian National University, 2006, http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A160304b.htm.

Related entries

Related Organisations

Archival resources

National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection

  • National Council of Women of Victoria Minutes, 1904 - 1960, Mfm G 7541-7544; National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection. Details
  • Records of the National Council of Women of Australia, 1924-1990 [manuscript], 1924 - 1990, MS7583; National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection. Details

State Library of Victoria, Australian Manuscripts Collection

  • National Council of Women of Victoria, 1902 - ; National Council of Women of Victoria (1902 - ); State Library of Victoria, Australian Manuscripts Collection. Details

Digital resources

Title
Lillias Skene
Type
Image
Source
Champions of the Impossible, NCW Victoria

Details

Jane Carey

Site-wide information and acknowledgements

National Foundation for Australian Women The University of Melbourne, eScholarship Research Centre

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ISSN 2207-3124