Once upon a time, 97 years ago, a 38 year old man was working as an engine driver at the Lockworks at Blanchetown. He and his wife were living there under canvas with their 4 children under 8 when their fifth child was due to be born. Possibly because they had previously lived at nearby Swan Reach and may have known the midwife there, the young 25 year old woman returned to Swan Reach for the birth. And so it came to pass, that on this day, 97 years ago, young Evelyn Rains was born.
In later life, Evelyn recalled the story her mother had told her of the day she was born: “I was born in a tent at Swan Reach, South Australia, just me and Mum. While waiting for the mid-wife, Mum delivered me and laid me on her tummy till help came. It was January 20, 1919.”
Young Evelyn spent her entire childhood growing up in the lock camps till the family moved to Mildura when she was about 15.