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New South Wales - Archival Item

James Luthy interviewed by Hamish Sewell in the Forgotten Australians and Former Child Migrants oral history project [sound recording] (2011)

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James Luthy, born in Blaxland, New South Wales, discusses his parents and family background; being sent to Gill Memorial Home for Boys in Goulburn; his first memories of Gill; the history of Gill; the grounds; the routine and hardships; drum band; sports; clothing and uniforms; punishments, discipline and abuse; officer training; child endowments received by Gill; the town, church and schools surrounding Gill; the demographics of Goulburn at the time; negative community attitudes towards children from Homes.


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Open for research, personal copies and public use.


Luthy discusses his feelings of solidarity with other boys from the Home; his schooling; his sense of low educational expectations had for Home boys; a lack of education amongst former wards and the capacity for this to disempower them; having to leave the Home abruptly and returning to live with his guardian; employment; his attitudes towards food and eating; his attitudes towards authority; his struggle for financial stability; his work ethic and success; completing tertiary education; the importance of records and the lack of records which exists about his childhood; possible reasons for this lack of records; a dispute he had with the Salvation Army about his admissions slip to Gill; discovering information about his childhood; discovering family names; finding his brother; his relationships with his siblings; the Apology; the ongoing effects of abuse and its impact upon relationships; his feelings about the Salvation Army; his public statements on behalf of children in care in Salvation Army Homes and the Salvation Army's response; an ensuing legal battle and his ongoing desire for redress; conclusion.

Prepared by: Naomi Parry