Women of the North

Celebrating the fascinating lives of women in the history of North Queensland

Neither Mischievous nor Meddlesome

A new book by Trisha Fielding. Available now!

Midwives book cover

This is the fascinating story of a group of North Queensland women who tirelessly devoted their lives to the service of others, but have largely been forgotten by the communities in which they lived and worked. Even though doctors thought many midwives were mischievous and meddlesome, and actively sought to eradicate them, it was women who dominated in the provision of midwifery services in the North. It was midwives who built and operated private general hospitals and conducted lying-in hospitals from their own homes, all before the advent of government-funded maternity hospitals. 

This book examines the courageous lives of the women who quietly went about their duties with dignity and grace, though they were often faced with the same challenges as their patients – the perils of childbirth, loneliness and isolation, and frequent tragedy.

The midwife has rarely been given her due, until now. Trisha Fielding has delivered a surprising, sometimes shocking, insight into an indispensable medical specialty dominated by enterprising women. 

Ian Townsend – author of Line of Fire, The Devil’s Eye, and Affection.

Available now. Order your copy by emailing nqhistory@gmail.com  with your name and contact details. Also available at:

  • Mary Who? Bookshop, 414 Flinders Street Townsville
  • Townsville Museum & Historical Society, 1/27 Barbeler Street, Currajong
  • Museum of Tropical Queensland, Townsville
  • State Library of Queensland Library Shop, Stanley Place, Southbank, Brisbane

Neither Mischievous nor Meddlesome: the remarkable lives of North Queensland’s independent midwives 1890-1940, by Trisha Fielding

  • Published by North Queensland History Press 2019
  • ISBN  978-0-6484839-2-2 (paperback) RRP $40 + $10 postage & handling*
  • ISBN  978-0-6484839-1-5 (limited edition hardcover – numbered & signed – only available from the author) Please contact me via email if you are interested in buying a copy of the hardcover edition. FREE Postage on the hardcover edition!

*  To anywhere in Australia. Contact the author for an estimate of overseas postage.

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