Memoirs and Au Revoirs
William John Franklin
For most of his adult life, William (Will) Franklin kept a diary. These diaries tell the story of his own life and that of his extended family.
Born in a pug and pine, two-roomed cottage in 1886, Will was the fourth, but first surviving child, of a pioneering family who farmed near Copper Hill on Yorke Peninsula.
When Will was 13, declining income and drought led the family to move across Spencer Gulf in 1900, to take up virgin land north of Cowell. It was in this area that he eventually established his own farm, married and had a family of five children, with his two sons also becoming successful farmers.
After retiring from the family farm “Hideaway” in 1961, and settling at Lucky Bay, Will began the task of editing the diaries, adding some reflective comment. Sadly, he did not complete this task before his death in 1973, so various family members have undertaken to complete the story.
Will Franklin’s story is all about facing challenges and adjusting to change. It provides an interesting insight into a way of life and social and economic circumstances that are far removed from those of subsequent generations.