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Ada Cambridge

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Ada Cambridge

Ada Cambridge (November 21, 1844 - July 19, 1926), later known as Ada Cross was an English writer.

Ada was daughter of Henry Cambridge and his wife, Thomasine, was born at St Germains, Norfolk. She was educated by governesses, her views on whom may be given in her own words:--"I can truthfully affirm that I never learned anything which would now be considered worth learning until I had done with them all and started foraging for myself. I did have a few months of boarding-school at the end, and a very good school for its day it was, but it left no lasting impression on my mind." (The Retrospect, chap. IV).

On 25 April 1870 she was married to the Rev. George Frederick Cross and a few weeks later sailed for Australia. She arrived in Melbourne in August and was surprised to find it a well established city. Her husband was sent to Wangaratta, her Thirty Years in Australia describes their experiences there, and the successive moves to Yackandandah, 1871, Ballan, 1874, Coleraine, 1877, Bendigo, 1884 and Beechworth, 1885, where they remained until 1893. Cross at first was the typical hard-working wife of a country clergyman, taking part in all the activities of the parish and incidentally making her own children's clothes. Her health, however, broke down and her activities had to be reduced, but she somehow managed to do a large amount of writing.

In 1875 her first novel Up the Murray appeared in the Australasian but was not published separately. Her published novels include My Guardian (1877), In Two Years' Time (1879), A Mere Chance (1882), A Marked Man (1890), The Three Miss Kings (1891), Not All in Vain (1892), A Little Minx (1893), A Marriage Ceremony (1894), Fidelis (1895), A Humble Enterprise (1896), At Midnight (1897), Materfamilias (1898), Path and Goal (1900), The Devastators (1901), Sisters (1904), A Platonic Friendship (1905), A Happy Marriage (1906), The Eternal Feminine (1907) and The Making of Rachel Rowe (1914). Other novels appeared as serials in the Australasian between 1879 and 1885.

In 1893 Cross and her husband moved to their last parish, Williamstown, near Melbourne, and remained there until 1909. Her husband went on the retired clergy list in 1910 and died in 1912. Mrs Cross, after living for a few years in England, returned to Australia, and died at Melbourne on 19 July 1926. She was survived by a daughter and a son, Dr K. Stuart Cross.

A street in the Canberra suburb of Cook is named in her honour.

Bibliography

  • Hymns on the Litany (1865)
  • Hymns on the Holy Communion (1866)
  • The Manor House: and Other Poems (1875)
  • Unspoken Thoughts (1887)
  • At Midnight: and Other Stories (1897)
  • Thirty Years in Australia (1903)
  • Sisters (1904)
  • The Eternal Feminine (1907)
  • The Hand in the Dark: and Other Poems (1913)
  • The Making of Rachel Rowe (1914)

Reference




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