This article considers the professional activities of midwives in the Lower Hunter region of New South Wales between 1940 and 1960: a time of change and improvement to the care of women during pregnancy and childbirth. Several midwives took advantage of the rapidly increasing and unmet demand for public maternity accommodation because of the post-war baby boom and set up private lying-in enterprises in private residences where they cared for women at childbirth. In doing so, these women demonstrated considerable enterprise as businesswomen in a region with a predominant male-oriented work and industrial culture.
Journal of the Royal Australian Historical Society Vol. 88, Issue 2, p. 184-199