MS 7026

Records of Dr Joan Refshauge

Scope and Content Note



2.88 m. (15 boxes) + 1 folio

Available for reference

The papers were donated to the Library by Sir William Refshauge in 1985 and 1989.

Papers mainly relating to Refshauge's service in the Territory of Papua and New Guinea as a Medical Officer and Assistant Director of the Infant, Child and Maternal Health Service. Includes official correspondence, medical statistics, reports of tours of inspection, papers on infant welfare training courses, conference papers, health department circulars, articles, lectures and addresses and surveys. The collection also contains personal documents and correspondence and publications.

Biographical Note

Joan Janet Refshauge was born in Melbourne on 3 December 1906 and educated at University High School (Melbourne), Presbyterian Ladies' College and the University of Melbourne, completing her MSc (Chemistry and Mathematics) in 1929, Dip. Ed. in 1930, MBBS in 1939 and a Diploma of Public Health (Sydney) in 1953. Dr Refshauge was responsible for pioneering infant and maternal health services in Papua New Guinea and oversaw the establishment of health centres, pre-schools and training schools for nurses. She had one son, Rupert.

1928-34 Staff member, Faculty of Chemistry, University of Melbourne
1937 Lecturer in mathematics, Melbourne Technical School and mathematics teacher in various public schools
1937 May 19 married M. W. Bergin (divorced 1948)
1940-42 Residencies at Alfred Hospital, Austin Hospital and Mildura Base Hospital
1943-46 Captain, Royal Australian Army Medical Corps
1947-63 Medical Officer and Assistant Director, Infant, Child and Maternal Health, Department of Public Health, Territory of Papua and New Guinea
1964 Awarded Cilento Medal and Order of the British Empire
1964-68 Medical Officer, Maternal and Child Welfare Service, Queensland Health Department
1968-74 Deputy Director, Maternal and Child Welfare Service, Queensland Health Department

Box List

March 1985 consignment

Box 1
1 Personal papers
  Letter to family from Diwanai, 1949.
  Newspaper article - 'She's pioneer of health service'.
  Letter from R. F. Barwick, 1948, thanking for care while in hospital.
  Newspaper article - New Guinea Times Courier, 1963.
2 Infant & Maternal Welfare draft annual reports, 1950-1962.
  Correspondence re staffing the Infant & Maternal Welfare division
3 Correspondence re recruitment of nurses.
4 Correspondence and reports, on New Ireland depopulation, 1950.
  Sundry mortality tables.
5 Survey of Pre-school facilities and needs, 1952.
  Brief on social work.
  Pre-schools in New Guinea, 1959.
  Child minding centres, report, 1962.
  Pre-school bulletins, IV (1956), VI (1956), VIII (1957), XVII (1960).
  Letter from Gunther re Pre-schools, 1954.
6 & 7 Reports of Tours of Inspection
  J.R., Rabaul and Bougainville, 1959.
  J.R., Highlands, 1958.
  J.R., Samarai, Lae, Madang, Solomon, Rabaul, 1948 and Port Moresby (1948), by Miss Jones.
  J.R., Rabaul, 1962.
  J.R. & Sister Bignold, Manus, New Ireland, New Britain, 1962.
  Sister Bignold, Eastern Highlands, 1959.
  J.R., Highlands, undated.
  J.R., Saiho (Northern District), 1954.
  J.R., New Britain, New Ireland & Lae, undated.
  J.R., Daru, 1949.
  Sister Schaefer, Milne Bay, 1963.
  J. Hamilton, Nutrition survey, Sepik District, April 1956.
  G.A. Rudge, Saiho transport problems, 1959.
  J.R. Diaries of visits to Boru area 1952 and 1954
Box 2
8 Infant welfare training course, year I
  Hints to trainees.
  Lecture outlines.
9 Infant welfare training course, year II
  Lecture outllines.
  Infant welfare training course, year III
  Lecture outlines.
10 Childcare & development syllabus, for use in girls central schools & for pre-school trainees.
  Reports on maternity surveys
  Rabaul, 1950 (Dr. E. Wright?).
  Lae, undated. Analysis of 200 pregnancies of native women at Lae.
  Native Schools' Syllabus, 1950.
11 Lectures, talks, and addresses by Dr Refshauge on general health & infant care
  Address to village women, undated.
  Address to unspecified audience, undated (?1956?)
  Address to unspecified audience, undated (?1956?)
  J.R. on mothercraft, undated.
  J.R. on the ear, undated.
  J.R. on meat, undated.
  J.R. inducting two nurses into a Health Centre, undated.
  J.R. in Tok Pisin, undated.
  Notes for talks.
  Address to Port Moresby Parents & Citizens.
  Talk no. 2 on mothering.
  Address to A.M. Conference 18 Nov. 1954.
12 Public Health Department (PHD) Circulars
  Regulations under the Native Administration Ordinance 1921-1955.
  Loss or destruction of stores or cash.
  Avoidance of waste & conservation of administration funds.
  Infant welfare.
  Administration works procedure.
  DDSNA circulars proposed policy & working plan for department of DASF in respect to native agriculture.
  DASF policy statements
  Wearing of clothes by natives.
  Policy in relation to administrative activity affecting change in native house style or location of homestead, hamlet and village dwellers.
  Native newspapers.
  The principles of native administration and their application.
  Works Branch procedures.
  Circulars re infantile gastro-enteritis, infectious diarrhoea, smallpox and cholera.
  Pharmaceutical Advisory Committee.
  PHD staff meetings, 1957 (4) - Regional organisation.
13 PHD circulars on maternal & child care
  Peanuts for infants.
  Mother-to-be (2 copies) frequency.
  Infant feeding & guide to nurses.
  Hints to Native Mothers - English.
  Hints to Native Mothers - Tok Pisin.
  Hints to Native Mothers - Motu.
  Infant feeding.
  Poster on selecting and cooking vegetables.
  Milk for Rauna.
  The pregnant woman.
  Heinz baby food information.
Box 3
14,15 International Conferences
  ANZAAS circular. PNG Branch 1957.
  Western Pacific School Health Programmes, 1961. (WHO/UNESCO).
- Synthesis of country reports.
- Child health & the school, Manila, 1961. (3 papers).
  Third South Pacific Conference, Refshauge's report, undated (1954?). Infants & Maternal Welfare.
  M. Timmer: Child mortality and population pressure in the D.I. Jogjakarta in Java.
  SPC training course in health education, 1957.
  Response to a Conference: application of recommendations to PNG.
16 Child Welfare Council
  C.W.C. annual report for 1964-5.
  Handbook on child welfare, 1965.
  Rabaul Welfare Conference, July 1954.
  C.W.C.: minutes of 5th meeting, July 1963.
  Further thoughts of Refshauge on Child Welfare Act, undated.
  Memo to Director, PHD, 1959, on need for a Child Welfare Act.
17 Report on No. 5 course for senior officers of TPNG, ASOPA, 1960 on Urbanisation and urban problems of Papua and New Guinea.
18 Advancement of native women
  Memo from Refshauge to Scragg, August 1957.
  Committee on advancement of native women, 1957.
  PSC letter re advancement of native women, 1959.
  Refshauge's draft response on advancement of native women.
  Reprinted articles
  A cultural approach to South East Asia, Far Eastern Quarterly, May 1945.
  DDSNA circular, 1946, 'Steps toward Colonial freedom'.
  Carlos Romulo, 'Asia must be free'.
  DDSNA circular, 1947, 'Cargo cults'.
  DDSNA circular, 1946, 'The Colonial Service' & social change.
  A.P. Elkin's review of W.C. Groves' 'Native Education', 1947.
  Oceania, Mar. 1937.
  South Pacific Post-Health Supplement, 7 June 1963.
  Draft response to editor of 'Our Woman', 1962.
19 Infant & Maternal Welfare, internal circulars.
  Anti-malarial drugs.
  Milk & marmite.
  Information for back of European clinic books.
  Educational diet (3 copies).
  Duties of welfare staff, 1953.
  Facilities of Hanuabada.
  Care of bottles and teats.
  Infant diet sheets.
  Malaria in native infants.
  "Aid post medicine".
  Proposal for psychology survey.
  Proposal for Nurses Conference, 1955.
20 Miscellaneous papers
  Territory of New Guinea, undated (pre 1942).
  Major Vertigan, 'New Guinea', text of lecture, 1947.
  The Territorian roneo newspaper, 28 June 1950.
  Memo on Northern District roads, 1954.
  Memo on Northern District buildings, 1954 (Saiko).
  Correspondence re typhoid, 1953.
  Heights & weights of Port Moresby European children, 1953.
  Bounties for multiple births, 1951.
  Letter from A.B. MacDonald re leprosy, 1953.
  IMW Monthly Report, Hanuabada, 1952, August.
  Lutheran proposal for trainees to work under Refshauge
  Artificial food supplied, 1957-8.

Addition 22 May 1989

Box 4

Personal documents, 1931-71

21-23 University of Melbourne certificates, 1939; references, 1939-40; record of military service, 1943-45; certificate of service with the Australian Army Medical Corps, 1946; demobilisation procedure book, 1946; bank books, 1947-51; Diploma in Public Health certificate, 1954; passports, 1954-64; papers on the 1964 Cilento Medal; papers relating to the death of her mother, 1971.
24 Diary, 1949
25 Invitations, 1951-63

Personal correspondence, 1950-79

Box 5
26 Letters, 1951-76
27 Correspondence (including letters of introduction), 1930-48
28 Letters from Refshauge's son, Rupert, 1950-56
29-30 Correspondence, 1950-58 (some files contain official correspondence, receipts and other papers)
31-32 Correspondence, 1960-68 including letters of congratulation on receiving OBE
33 Correspondence, 1970-79
Box 6
34 Undated personal correspondence

Medical Officer and Assistant Director, Infant, Child and Maternal Health, Territory of Papua and New Guinea, 1931-64

35 Official correspondence, 1947-49 and undated
36 Official correspondence, 1950-59
37 Official correspondence, 1960-64
38-41 Medical statistics and data including data from surveys of villages and data on maternal deaths, child mortality, births, deaths, child weights and heights, 1949-61
Box 7
42-46 Medical statistics and data (cont.), 1949-61
47-48 Nursing lectures
Box 8
49 'Hints for nurses'
50 Examinations and syllabus material on infant and maternal welfare and midwifery, 1955-63
51 Other papers relating to training of nurses, 1955
52-53 Roneoed papers, mainly papers on infant and maternal health produced by the Department of Public Health, Territory of Papua and New Guinea, 1947-60
54 World Health Organisation (WHO) - Commonwealth of Australia seminar on mental health in childhood (Sydney, 1953)
Box 9  
55 World Health Organisation Conference (Taiwan, 1954)
56-58 WHO - Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Nutrition Education and Health Education Seminar (Manila, 1955)
59-60 Conference of Infant Welfare Nurses (Port Moresby, 1955)
61 International Study Conference on the Child in the Family (Tokyo, 1958)
Box 10
62 21st Meeting of the Nutrition Committee of the National Health and Medical Research Council, 1961
63-64 WHO/UNESCO Seminar on Child Health and the School (Manila, 1961)
65 Seminar on Nutrition (Goroka, 1962)
66-67 Miscellaneous conference papers, 1952-62
68 Other papers, 1931-49 including patrol and medical officer reports and papers relating to the 1947 New Guinea nutrition survey
Box 11
69-73 Correspondence, circulars and other papers, 1950-58 relating to the Pre-School Advisory Committee, pre-schools and kindergartens, child deaths, notes from 1953 patrol reports, Infant and Maternal Welfare (Territory of New Guinea) annual reports (1950-51 and 1955-56).
74-76 Tour reports, speech, notes, correspondence and other papers, 1960-64 relating to the 1960 senior officers course, Pre-School Association and other subjects.
Box 12
77-83 Miscellaneous undated Papua New Guinea papers. Includes 'Vocabulary: English-Motu' by G.W. Toogood, 'Papua and New Guinea recipe book', papers on tours of the Territory, notes, typescripts and other papers
Box 13

Articles, talks, reports and other writings

84 Autobiographical writings, articles on child health topics and a draft report on health and welfare in PNG
85 Manuscripts on infant and maternal welfare; manuscript entitled 'Diseases of Indonesia'; articles on skin and breast cancer and other papers
86 Draft articles on health issues, a report on a tour of the New Guinea mainland, correspondence (1962), a report on the role of the Infant, Child and Maternal Health Service and a typescript 'Europeans in a plural society'.
87 Foreword for the Pre-School bulletin and typescripts of articles on health issues, 1956
88 Drafts of 'The child of the working mother and problem parents and his care to school age'
89 Mothercraft talks
90-91 Drafts of articles on health issues
Box 14
92-93 Reports on the Infant, Child and Maternal Health Service and other topics

Maternal and Child Welfare Service, Queensland Health Department

94 Correspondence, 1964-73; timetables, radio interview for 'Lets face it' (28 April 1966), nappy rash reports and other papers

Other papers, 1939-70

95-96 Course notes, assignments, handouts and other papers relating to studies undertaken by Refshauge, 1939-c.1961
97 Sketches, receipts, photographs and cuttings, 1947-70
98 Miscellaneous papers, 1951-55
99 Correspondence and notebook of Marnie Refshauge (Refshauge's mother), 1940-69 including letters from her son William Refshauge written during World War II

Publications, 1938-67

Box 15
100-01 Articles from The medical journal of Australia, 1958-59
102-03 Reports, periodicals, legislation, pamphlets etc, 1947-61
104 Periodicals and reports, 1954-67
105 Pamphlets, reports and other publications, 1938-62
Folio Posters on malaria, village sanitation, infant welfare and nutrition.
Guide prepared November 1997