Everyone looking their best.
So it was on 21 November 1917 when John Michael Galvin and Grace Walmsley Payne married. Thanks to one of my husband’s cousins, we now have some photos of them.
The description of the wedding appeared in the newspaper some two months after the wedding.
A pretty wedding was celebrated before a Choral Mass in St. Patrick's Church, Adelaide, on November 21, the contracting parties being Mr. Jack M. Galvin, eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. J. P. Galvin, of Adelaide, and Miss Grace Walmsley Payne, youngest daughter of Mrs. E. Payne, of Adelaide. Rev. Father O'Sullivan officiated.
The bride, who was conducted to the altar by her brother, Mr. E. Payne, looked charming in a dress of ivory silk poplin (tunic effect), and carried a shower bouquet. The first bridesmaid, Miss Annie Walmsley (cousin of the bride), wore a dainty Assam, silk costume and black hat with pink trimmings. The second bridesmaid, Miss Kathleen Dineen (cousin of the bridegroom), was charmingly dressed in a Japanese silk frock costume with black hat relieved with pink.
The duties of best man were performed by Mr. James Dineen, of Mile-End. Mr. Arthur Watts led the choir, Mrs. V. Brown being organist. During the Mass the bride and bridegroom approached Communion together. At the breakfast, held at the residence of the parents of the bridegroom. Rev. Father O'Sullivan proposed the toast of the bride and bridegroom, and spoke in eulogistic praise of the newly married couple and wished them every success. The bridegroom suitably responded. The toast of the bridesmaids was proposed by Mr. E. Payne and Mr. J. Dineen responded, and that of the parents of the bride and bridegroom was proposed by Mr. F. P. Keogh and responded to by Mr. J. P. Galvin. The happy couple were the recipients of costly and numerous presents. A very pleasant time was spent on the evening of the wedding, when many of their numerous friends were present. (1)
Grace and John had met in Adelaide through the very active local church youth group, St Patrick’s Literary and Dramatic Society. This group held weekly meetings with debates, impromptu speeches, readings and talks.
In the photo below they are performing together, most likely in the skit “Rival Forces” as part of an elocutionary evening detailed thus:
The next item consisted of a humorous sketch, entitled "Rival Forces," the following taking part— Miss Grace Payne, Messrs. P. A. Greene, P. O'Reilly, and J. M. Galvin. (2)
|L to R Unknown performer, |
Grace Payne and John Michael Galvin
At a September meeting in 1915 which focussed on all things Irish, Grace presented a talk on “The five counties” and John’s presentation was entitled “Home Rule”.(3)
On another occasion Grace’s impromptu speech topic was “Should Women be Elected to Parliament” while John was required to address the topic of “Bible teaching in State Schools.” (4)
They were also required to act as critics for other speeches and performances. In November of 1915 when the new hall at St Patrick’s was opened, a celebratory evening concluded with the court scene from “The merchant of Venice” John was Antonio and Grace performed as Portia.
The reporter's commentary:Mr. J. M. Galvin gave a good interpretation of Shylock, his enunciation being clear and distinct. Miss G. Payne as Portia was seen at her best. Her reading of the character was excellent, and her elocution proved decidedly attractive. The remaining members of the caste also did well. (5)
So in this fertile ground for young love, John Michael Galvin in his reminiscences of 1968 recalls:
It was my very good fortune to meet a most gracious young lady, Grace Walmsley Payne. We were both members of a self-improvement Society - St Patrick' s Literary and Debating Society - which conducted weekly meetings at which papers on current topics would be read by individual members and then would be subjected to criticism by the other members present.
Apparently at that stage of my life I must have been somewhat assertive in character as it came back to me that Grace had mentioned to some of her girl friends that when she got the opportunity she was going "to take that cocky young Jack Galvin down a peg or two". She did and as I remember the incident it concerned my over emphasis of the letter 'h' in hospital-as she said in her criticism "I would remind Mr Galvin that it is pronounced 'aitch' not 'haitch'.And so for now we come full circle to the wedding photo. There is much more to be told another day about the lives of this couple, my husband's paternal grandparents.
Something had to be done to atone for that. Something was.
On 2nd November 1917 we were married at St Patrick' s Church, Grote Street Adelaide. (6)
- 1918 'Family Notices.', Southern Cross (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1954), 18 January, p. 16, viewed 3 November, 2015, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article166985060
- 1915 'LITERARY SOCIETIES.', Southern Cross (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1954), 12 March, p. 12. , viewed 18 Apr 2018, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article166424633
- 1915 'LITERARY SOCIETIES. ST. PATRICK'S LITERARY AND DRAMATIC SOCIETY.', Southern Cross (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1954), 3 September, p. 12. , viewed 18 Apr 2018, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article166427424
- 1915 'ST. PATRICK'S LITERARY AND DRAMATIC SOCIETY.', Southern Cross (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1954), 1 October, p. 9. , viewed 18 Apr 2018, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article166427833
- 1915 'OPENING OF ST. PATRICK'S HALL', Southern Cross (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1954), 5 November, p. 14. , viewed 18 Apr 2018, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article166428370
- 1968 Galvin, John Michael The Galvin Family: Over one hundred years in Australia. Family document held digitally.
This post written by CRGalvin appears at https://earlieryears.blogspot.com/2018/04/dressed-for-occasion.html