Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Filling the cradles

I think this is around the fourth year in a row I've done this -- given a talk at the Central Library here in Auckland. This time, on the not-well covered topic of private maternity nursing homes (ones set up in suburbia, in private houses run by licensed nurses, sometimes unlicensed, usually assisted by GPs).

The topic intrigued me, because of so many I'd heard over the years with stories of either being born in such homes. or their mothers/fathers born there. At one time, Avondale had two going, in the early 1930s, out of a total of four between 1915 and 1945.

If anyone has any info they'd like to share about the homes, do let me know. My email:

Update 9 November 2013:
Website for NZ Maternity Homes


  1. Lisa, I trust you're not planning to fill all those cradles by YOURSELF!!! LOL

  2. Ha! :D Bless Auckland Library's Comms & Marketing's cotton socks and ad design skills ... ;)

  3. I am curious to know more. My mother was born in a private maternity home in Grey Lynn in 1933 and her sister a few years later at the Jesmond Home in Mt Albert. I wondered if this was located Jesmond Ave?

  4. Hi Donna,

    I think you're talking about "Jesmond Dene" for the Mt Albert one, a maternity home which began in Mt Albert on New North Road in 1931, next to the Mt Albert telephone exchange (the exchange is still there, but Jesmond Dene at 737 New North Road, and the Braemar buildings shopping block, were demolished to make way for St Lukes Road extension). There were at least two nurses there.


  5. Lisa, I've passed this information on to those 2 ladies from our group whom I spoke to you about - they have an avid interest in the subject so will hopefully be able to attend.

  6. Thanks Lisa! I am gutted I missed your talk.....have you any written material on the subject?