The Tale of Frieda Keysser. Frieda Keysser and Carl Strehlow: an Historical Biography. Volume 2: Between Three Worlds, 1910-1922. Part One [and] Part Two. John STREHLOW.

The Tale of Frieda Keysser. Frieda Keysser and Carl Strehlow: an Historical Biography. Volume 2: Between Three Worlds, 1910-1922. Part One [and] Part Two

London, Wild Cat Press, 2019.

Large octavo, two volumes, xxvi, 582 pages plus 4 maps (one folding) and 64 pages of plates (many in colour) and a folding plate; and [iv], 583-1218 pages plus 48 pages of plates (many in colour).

Laminated colour pictorial papered boards; fine copies with the fine dustwrappers.

Both parts are signed by the author. 'Of all the early women pioneers omitted from official histories, Carl Strehlow's wife Frieda Keysser is the most glaring example, having spent over a quarter of a century on the Australian frontier when life was dangerous, difficult and often short.... Frieda was well aware that her tumultuous life was unique and kept copious diaries, in later years authoring an overview of her life ... This account of her life was inspired by those writings ... and constitute one of the richest records of pioneer life of the period. As a practical person who played a crucial role in the survival of Central Australia's aboriginal population, Frieda's diaries are distinguished by meticulous observation and careful recording of names, places and facts' (from the dustwrapper). More specifically, this second volume 'covers Frieda and Carl's return to Germany in 1910 to attend to the education of their children, and complete the publication of Carl's book, with no plans to return to Australia. Frieda's work on the problems of infant mortality and social breakdown as it affected women had reversed population decline at Hermannsburg, but changes in the running of the Mission caused alarm among the Aranda Christians, who wrote begging her and Carl to return. This volume ends with Carl's death at Horseshoe Bend halfway to the railhead at Oodnadatta, leaving Frieda to travel south with son Theo on her own'.

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