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Ellen (Nellie) Desailly (1857–1939)



The death occurred at Neutral Bay, Sydney, on October 31, of Miss Ellen Desailly, sister of the late Dr. J. G. Desailly, of Camperdown. The late Miss Desailly will be remembered as a great worker for St. Paul's Church of England and Sunday school, and also as first secretary of St. Paul's ladies' guild.

The principal of the Kindergarten Training College (Sydney) paid the following graceful tribute to the late Miss Desailly's work, in the course of an obituary notice recording her death:—

"To all who were associated with Miss Ellen Desailly, the news of her death will come as a great personal loss. She was the first general secretary of the Kindergarten Union of New South Wales, and guided its activities for 22 years. She was adviser, arbitrator and friend to all who were con- nected with it; to myself, as prin- cipal of the Kindergarten Training College, to the staff and students, to members of Free Kindergarten committees, and to its officials. She always gave wise and valuable advice and was most generous in giving of her time and strength, and much was asked of her. She helped in solving many a problem and guided our feet along many a difficult path, She was, in the truest sense, a 'gentlewoman,' neat and particular in her appearance, gracious in her manner, utterly abhorrent of anything that was mean or underhand, and so loving and understanding when we came to consult her.

"Miss Desailly will long be remembered as the ideal general secretary, and in the Free Kindergarten in Wentworth Park, which is proud to bear her name, one feels that her work for the welfare of the little children will not be ended with her passing."

Original publication

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Citation details

'Desailly, Ellen (Nellie) (1857–1939)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 14 April 2024.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2024

Life Summary [details]


23 December, 1857
New South Wales, Australia


31 October, 1939 (aged 81)
Neutral Bay, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Religious Influence

Includes the religion in which subjects were raised, have chosen themselves, attendance at religious schools and/or religious funeral rites; Atheism and Agnosticism have been included.

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