HerStory

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Pat FLEMING

Also known as: née Wallace, Nungala, Daisy Alma was her birth name

Born: 2/03/1915

Died: 9/07/1995

Special Achievements:

Life Member of National Trust of Australia.

Additional Information:

Pat came to the Northern Territory with her husband Baptist minister and missionary, Tom Fleming in 1950. Their son Adrian was two years old, and Jolyon was born in Altona in 1955, when he was six weeks old returned to Yuendumu. Together with their two sons they lived and worked at Yuendumu Aboriginal settlement for 25 years.

Yuendumu is 293 km northwest of Alice Springs on the Tanami Road, and is a community largely made up of the Warlpiri and Anmatyerr Aboriginal people.

As there was no school, Pat voluntarily conducted a pre-school class for 30 Aboriginal children while educating her sons up to secondary level.  

Pat worked closely with her husband, visiting three cattle stations a fortnight, doing the bookkeeping and banking and playing the organ at church services and weddings.

When visiting cattle stations, Pat assisted with schooling children until 1965 before opening a store called Mission House, which soon evolved into a supermarket.

In 1975 Pat and Tom retired to Alice Springs and became heavily involved with church activities and heritage.

From 1979-1994, Pat was a Committee member, Branch Secretary, Councillor and Treasurer of National Trust's McDouall Stuart Branch.

Pat and Tom helped save the Old Hartley Street School from bulldozers by raising the funds needed for its purchase. They had previously created the Fleming Essay Award for the school's students as part of Heritage week activities.

In her obituary, close friend Ross Westcott described Pat as 'a well read and dignified woman whose stories of Central Australian life he enjoyed listening to very much.' (Centralian Advocate 14/07/1995)

In 1994 Pat donated her mother's wedding gift quilt. Known as Mrs Fleming's Quilt, it takes pride of place in the WMA collection.

We also have her 1940 wedding dress in the collection Cat # 223.


Resources

  • References

    Rolfe, Margaret. 1998.  Australian Quilt HeritageRushcutters Bay, Sydney, New South Wales:  J. B. Fairfax Press Pty Limited.


  • References

    (date unknown).  FLEMING Daisy Alma (nee Wallace).  Northern Territory Women’s Register, 45.


  • References

    Pat Fleming, a heritage guardian.  newspaper unknown.  date unknown:page unknown.


  • References

    Lucas, Halcyon.  A life of love and service.  Alice Springs News.  July 26, 1995:5.


  • References

    Ross, Pauline.  (date unknown).  In Memorium … Pat Fleming 1915-1995.  magazine unknown, page unknown.


  • References

    Bowman, Marg. (no date given).  Every hill got a storyNorthern Territory:  Central Land Council.  Pages 115, 117.