Who was Nellie Payne?

Honour roll, Christ Church, Longford. Carved 1937.


Nellie had always wished to visit the Eastern countries, so in 1935 Nellie(now aged 70) and her daughter Madge embarked on a P and O liner which took them to Manila, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Yokahama.  In Japan, as with other places, there was no lack of entertainment, with parties being given for her by old friends from Tasmania, and of visits to the races in Tokyo.  Then back home and feeling refreshed, she again resumed her carving work, this time with a request from the Mothers Union of Longford.

“Besides being at pains to devise a fresh and appropriate design for each honour board she was asked to carve, Mrs Payne was often considerably exercised in her mind about the inscription or legend that was to figure on it.  Occasionally, those who ordered the board nominated their own inscription, but mostly it was left to Mrs Payne’s taste and judgement;  and since she had ruled against repetition, there came times when even her fertile brain was at a loss for a suitable text.

It is remembered in the family that during one of these minor crises, when an apt legend was needed for the honour board which the Longford Mothers’ Union was presenting to the church, Geoffrey’s little daughter Phyllis, then aged 12, came forward with the suggestion that the wording on such a board might be, “the mothers gave their sons and the sons gave their lives.”  This was thought to be singularly appropriate, and was adopted.
In this board, which has a central motif of Mother and Child, Mrs Payne put some of her most delicate carving, and it was presented to Christ Church, Longford, on the occasion of its diamond jubilee.  The Rev. T. J. Gibson dedicated it on March 7, 1937.

Examiner (Launceston, Tas. : 1900 – 1954), Wednesday 3 March 1937, page 5