Finding Family

One woman's obsession with family history.

This morning I (reluctantly) woke up to the sound of the breakfast show on the radio discussing the fact that it was Friday the 13th. Somewhat superstitious myself (yes, I throw salt over my shoulder, avoid walking under ladders, look in horror at an umbrella open inside and almost all the time, touch wood) I wondered about Friday the 13th and how it was looked upon in the past. I soon turned to Trove to satisfy my curiosity and found that this ominous date was featured in abundance.

Some people preferred to make light of the superstitions associated with the day.

Armstrong's Comment

Others held luncheons in the day’s honour zealously defying the bad luck connected with superstitions.

Friday the 13th

Amidst all the worry of bad luck, some (such as Mrs Davies from Nedlands) considered the day to be quite auspicious and even had a bout of good luck to show for it!

Lucky Ticket

On a personal level, the number 13 featured prominently within my own Great Grandmother’s life. On the 13th July 1953 a brick wall fell onto the side of the family home. Though the accident actually occurred on a Monday, considering the amount of 13s in her life, I’m sure she wouldn’t have held much joy for the 13th in combination with a Friday.

Number 13

The above article is extremely similar to an article I previously posted on Finding Family called Lucky Number 13. This one is a little more special though. My Uncle is featured in the top photograph and even my Mum gets a mention. Unfortunately however I do not have the source for this article. It’s an original newspaper article cut out (probably by my Nan) and placed in the family photo album as a keepsake. It is unlabelled, undated and (I think) missing a chunk off the end of it. As yet, I have not found it on Trove.

I also came across this article while searching…

13th Article

As I read it I couldn’t help but laugh at the words:

But superstition is almost a thing of a bygone age in 1942…

Now in 2012 (70 years since the above article was printed!) Friday the 13th still attracts the same interest as it did in the past. Perhaps articles aren’t printed in the newspapers as often as they were back then (you do however see articles online) but superstitious people still remain a little wary of the date. It made me smile and a quote immediately came to mind:

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Merron from Western District Families very kindly nominated Finding Family for an Illuminating Blogger award. Thank you Merron! Merron is from the Western District of Victoria and writes very interesting posts about the area as well as her own family. Like me, she’s also a big fan of Trove! I especially loved reading her recent post: Misadventures, Deaths and Near Misses. It makes for very interesting reading! Please visit Merron’s blog and have a look around.


  • 1953 ‘ARMSTRONG’S COMMENT: “Friday, the 13th, eh!”.’, The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1956), 13 February, p. 2, viewed 13 July, 2012,
  • 1936 ‘FRIDAY, THE THIRTEENTH.’, The Central Queensland Herald (Rockhampton, Qld. : 1930 – 1956), 24 December, p. 7 Supplement: PICTORIAL, viewed 13 July, 2012,
  • 1945 ‘Buys £2000 Ticket On Her ‘Lucky 13th’.’, The Daily News (Perth, WA : 1882 – 1950), 18 July, p. 1 Edition: CITY FINAL, viewed 13 July, 2012,
  • 1942 ‘Friday The 13th.’, Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW : 1888 – 1954), 13 March, p. 3 Edition: LATEST EDITION, viewed 13 July, 2012,
  • The article titled “Wall Crashes on Hay-St Home” was obtained courtesy of my Uncle Wayne.

10 thoughts on “Friday the 13th

  1. Sandra says:

    Hi Jessica.
    I never new that i was mentioned in the article.


    1. Jess says:

      At first I didn’t realise you were in it either! But there you are, right at the bottom. 🙂

  2. Fiona says:

    Congrats on your award! Isn’t Trove just the best. I could spend days trawling through that site.

    1. Jess says:

      Thanks Fiona! It certainly is! I too could spend days searching through it. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. 🙂

  3. drbillshares says:

    Welcome to the GeneaBloggers family. Hope you find the association fruitful; I sure do. I have found it most stimulating, especially some of the Daily Themes.

    May you keep sharing your ancestor stories!

    Dr. Bill 😉
    Author of “13 Ways to Tell Your Ancestor Stories” and family saga novels:
    “Back to the Homeplace” and “The Homeplace Revisited”
    The Heritage Tourist at In-Depth Genealogist:

    1. Jess says:

      Thank you Dr Bill. I’m very excited to be a part of it! I look forward to participating in some of the themes and checking out your blog too. 🙂

  4. Word bubble over the little boy’s head: “I didn’t do it..”
    Kidding aside – he was very lucky.
    Theresa (Tangled Trees)

    1. Jess says:

      haha It certainly does look like he’s thinking that! Thanks for reading and leaving a comment. 🙂

  5. Jim S says:

    I just saw found your website through Geneabloggers. Welcome to Geneabloggers.

    Regards, Jim
    Genealogy Blog at Hidden Genealogy Nuggets

    1. Jess says:

      Thanks Jim! I look forward to checking out your blog too. 🙂

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