16 Findings/Reviews of other New Writing & Research

October 2017


Cover of The Devon Historian 2017
See article: Two Girls on the Land'


    In The Devon Historian Volume 86, 2017, in 'Two Girls on the Land' Judy Moss discusses a recently discovered Devon diary. It had apparently been written by Faith Lowe, who lived and worked in Throwleigh, in 1918. See and obtain a copy through The Devon History Society. The article explains how the diary came to light, in 2005. Copies of the diary are held by The Throwleigh Archive and The Devon Heritage Centre. Faith and her sister Patience were daughters of the then rector of Throwleigh, G.L. Gambier Lowe. The article in Devon Historian 'presents research and discussion to reach a conclusion on the question of the girls' status as Land Girls', concluding that rather than being Land Girls as such, Faith and Patience were probably registered with the Women's National Land Service Corps. We learn about the girls' experiences living in this Dartmoor parish. For anyone with connections or ancestors in this area this article is invaluable. My aunt-in-law Mary Madders was born in the parish and would have been a young girl during this period; as I read the article and write this I wonder what Mary would have made of the diary; if perhaps/probably she knew the Lowe daughters.

     The Lowe Diary is apparently a 'small book', with a week to a page and none of its entries run to more than a couple of sentences. Nevertheless, such findings as this relevant to the social-history and women's writings of the early C20 are gems. I think more diaries, letters, etc may come to light as the generations move on and we turn out our mothers, grandmother's' and aunts' possessions, retrieving their authentic experiences and sharing them with the wider world. For, unlike, our own generation, many of these women did not have the chance to pursue their own literary talents, in any way, shape, or form.

      For anyone interested in finding about the everyday writings of women who wrote in Devon, about local history of Devon's parishes, or/and rural/agricultural history, or women's contribution to the First World War, this is a unique article, well written and thoroughly researched.

Copyright Julie Sampson

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