Mothers Day – week 19

Phyllis Moira NOSWORTHY was born on 9th May 1904 at Reedy Creek in South Australia to Rose Elania Tilbrook COOPER and Herbert George NOSWORTHY. As my maternal grandmother she loomed larger then life and was the matriarch of the family. To a child she always seemed to be in control and making the decisions.


rose nosworthy (2)
Rose Elania Tilbrook COOPER

Phyllis was both a mother and a grandmother as well as being a daughter and a sister. Phyllis was the first born to Rose and Herbert and her middle name Moira highlights the Irish side of her maternal family. The NOSWORTHY family lived around Conmurra on a number of lands grants and properties. Herbert along with his brothers and fathers farmed the land. Phyllis like all her family were brought up as strong Methodists and regular church attendance was seen as a must by her.

In March 1928 Phyllis married Henry George COOPER known as Harry. While Phyllis was keen to share her family history and family stories her marriage in the registry office in Adelaide was always skimmed over. Harry and Phyllis were first cousins and my mother remembers the conversations about them being in whispers and stopping when the children walked in the door.

Phyllis and Harry’s four eldest children – this was before Marion was born

Phyllis and Harry had 5 children Moira, Ray, Kathleen, Ann and Marion. All five children were born in Naracoorte when the family were still living in Lucindale at the time. Early in the 1940’s the family moved to Edward Street Norwood where Harry and Phyllis lived until his death. After Harry died Phyllis lived in a retirement village in the Norwood until her death in the 1980’s.

Phyllis was a strong woman who was the mother of 5 children and grandmother of numerous grandchildren. She was active in the community and was involved in a range of organizations throughout her life. She had a thirst for knowledge and continued to play her bass recorder badly all her life. Nor did she ever really develop the skills to cook a good meal. But she did ensure that many strong woman followed in her way.


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