Interview with Elizabeth Austin


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Elizabeth Austin: Well one thing I noticed about the people, they were poor, most people were poor first when I started back there years ago, you know, way back in 1945 was the depression time you see. But they used to try to have something for me special. A tin of fruit or something, anyway to get something special, they'd have something special.

Interviewer: Did you ever get paid for deliveries or was it done out of love?

Elizabeth Austin: I believe I born 35 babies before I went and took a course in St. John's. I never charged anything there, but people used to give me things to take out home. You know yourself now Morris, I was at home then with a family of six children, wasn't I. Widowed with six children, and they give me things to take home like beef and probably beans or peas or part of a cake or perhaps a loaf of bread or something you know. And one woman gave me five dollars, one time, and that was in 1945, I think it was, and that was a lot of money at that time, you know. Five dollars was a lot of money.

Interviewer: After you took your course, was there a fee?

Elizabeth Austin: After I took the course, and came back here, they used to pay me ten dollars. I couldn't insist on people because we were all poor people, see. Well then they gave me ten dollars, and a little later when family allowance and things like that began to prosper more, they gave me twelve. Lots of times when I went, Burlington people look, give me so much as fifteen. I asked for twelve dollars, never went over twelve dollars, that was the charge I used to have. And some people would give me fifteen. I remember one person give me a twenty one time. Oh yes, there are a few that never paid, but most people did.