Reprint: Death of Mrs. Mary Hannay Foott

Australian literature has suffered a distinct loss by the death of Mrs. Mary Hannay Foott, which occurred at Bundaberg on Saturday last after a short illness. Mrs. Foott had been walking in the streets of the town on Tuesday of last week, but on the same night contracted pneumonia, and died on Friday evening. Her daughters-in-law, Mrs. C. H. Foott and Mrs. A. P. Foott, had been summoned from Brisbane, but arrived an hour after the end came. Mrs. Foott had no relatives in Bundaberg, her elder son, Brigadier-General C. H. Foott, being absent on active service, while her second son, Arthur P. Foott, was killed in action in France a year ago. The funeral took glace at Bundaberg on Sunday, and was largely attended. The service was conducted by the Rev. Canon Beasley.

The late Mary Hannay Foott was a native of Glasgow, where she was bom on September 26, 1846. She was the daughter of the late James Black, while her mother was of the Hannay family, whose name was well known in literature. Mrs. Foott arrived in Australia in 1853, at the age of 7, and received her education in Melbourne. In 1874 she married Mr. Thomas Wade Foott, and lived for some years on Dundoo station, in South-western Queensland. On the death of her husband in 1884 she came to live at Rocklea, near Brisbane, and there opened a small private school, at which, in addition to the ordinary subjects, she gave lessons in music and painting. Possessing considerable artistic skill, she also gave much attention to literature, to which, indeed, most of her time was devoted, and she soon gave up her school to take the position of literary editor on the "Queenslander," which she occupied for many years. It was under her regime that the publication of social gossip, which has since become an institution in the daily as well as the weekly papers, was initiated. She retired from active newspaper work a number of years ago, and for some years had resided at Bundaberg. Mrs. Foott was the author of many poems, most of which appeared in the "Queenslander." She has published two volumes of verse--"Where the Pelican Builds, and Other Poems" (Brisbane, 1885) and "Morna Lee and Other Poems" (London, 1890).

First published in The Queenslander, 19 October 1918

[Thanks to the National Library of Australia's newspaper digitisation project for this piece.]

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on August 4, 2010 9:12 AM.

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