Colac 1939-1945: Wartime in a Country Community

Gas masks in a Victorian country town? For a time during 1942 air raid precautions were taken seriously all over Australia. Trenches were dug in school grounds. Private shelters were constructed. Air raid wardens patrolled streets to ensure that no chinks of light emanated from blacked out homes.

But this was just one aspect of life during World War 2 in countless Australian communities. Women knitted and sewed in response to the call for comforts for servicemen and women. Children ran little fetes and street-side stalls to raise money, adding these contributions to the local war savings appeals.

Collections of waste materials – bottles, rags, paper and metals – involved men, women and children. In over 200 conversations with Colac residents, author Dawn Peel has learned of the hardships and sacrifices made on the home front, in a district well removed from areas of conflict.

Colac 1939–1945: Wartime in a Country Community may be purchased from the Colac & District Historical Society.