Examples in the records
Divorce files can be a detailed source of information for the family historian, providing extra details which may not have been discussed or known within the family. And official records can often give a more impartial account than a family story. Researchers have been known to locate marriage certificates, handwritten letters and occasionally photographs in the files.
The notorious Matilda (Tilly) Divine nee Twiss - known as the ‘Queen of Woolloomooloo’ met James (Jim) Devine in 1916 and they married in 1917.
After years of physical abuse Tilly filed for divorce from Jim in 1942. Their opposite personalities and hedonistic lifestyle took a toll on their relationship. The divorce case papers for Tilly and Jim Devine [NRS13495, item 2743/1942] include a certified copy of the marriage certificate.
Some of the divorce files may include photographs and letters. The divorce case of Jules and Sybil Busch includes a wonderful photograph [NRS 13495, Item 3438/1944].
Please note that not every divorce file contains a photograph.
Content on this page was first published in the August 2012 edition of Now&Then (Issue 57).