The reformatory St John the Baptist Home for Boys was renamed St John's Boys Town in 1941. It was run by the Brothers of St John the Baptist under the control of the Children's Welfare and Public Relief Board and was located at Marshall Terrace, Brooklyn Park. As part of a rationalisation of the prevailing situation in Adelaide, it was decided by the newly arrived Archbishop Matthew Beovich that the Brothers of St John the Baptist would look after older boys, with younger boys from three to twelve years of age being sent to St Joseph's Orphanage, Largs Bay.
By 1942 the number of boys in care had risen to almost fifty. Internal problems within the order, combined with concerns about the management of the Home, led to the handing over of control. By command of the Archbishop the Salesians of Don Bosco replaced the Brothers of St John the Baptist. The order of the Brothers of St John the Baptist was suppressed and ceased to operate. Several options were offered to the remaining brothers, which included transfer to another religious congregation.
On taking over, the Salesian priests and brothers applied to alter the name and rules of the home to put a new focus on education and training. In 1954 full authority to accept day-boys for both technical and secondary studies was granted and the name 'Boys Town' was discontinued. A new building was erected so that the number of residents could be increased and the home became known as 'the boarding section of Salesian School'. Despite the official name change the Home continued to be referred to as St John's Boys Home in correspondence for some years.
31 July 2023
Cite this: http://www.findandconnect.gov.au/guide/sa/SE00347
First published by the Find & Connect Web Resource Project for the Commonwealth of Australia, 2011
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