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A plaque commemorates the poet and nurse Grace Jennings Carmichael who moved to Orbost around 1880 where her stepfather managed a station. She began to write her poetry during this period, and began to express in verse her understanding of the sights, scents and sounds of the bush, often writing in some remote clearing, her manuscripts stored for privacy in a hollow trunk.

Her stepfather and her mother disapproved of her `scribbling`, but a kindly tutor persuaded them that her verse had merit, and she was allowed to continue. The Bairnsdale Advertiser published her first story, and the Weekly Times an early poem; then on 28 November 1885 her poem `The Old Maid` was published in the Australasian under her pen name Jennings Carmichael.

An interesting little ceremony will take place during the Back to Orbost celebrations which commence today when on Monday next a bronze panel in memory of Grace Jennings Carmichael will be unveiled. The panel is being erected by a group of admirers of the work of this Victorian poetess who spent her girlhood in Gippsland. Born in Ballarat, Grace Jennings Carmichael went to Orbost when she was five years old and lived there until some time in the eighties she entered the Children's Hospital to train as a nurse. She died at the early age of 37, in London in 1904, and her friends will be glad to know that a group of ladies of Leighton, England, still care for her grave in Wood Grange cemetery. Designed by Mr Wallace Anderson, the bronze panel, which is being placed in the municipal buildings at Orbost, will, it is hoped, be unveiled by the shire president, while representatives of the Australian Literary Society will be present. Mr Keith Carmichael, who until recently lived at Montmorency, is a son of the poetess and he, with his wife and family, has been invited to visit Orbost to take part in the celebrations. 
Advertiser (Hurstbridge, Vic), 26 February 1937.



Address:Ruskin Street, Orbost Museum, Orbost, 3888
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -37.707366
Long: 148.455751
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People
Monument Designer:Wallace Anderson


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Monday 1st March, 1937
Source: MA,ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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