Doris Gallagher

Doris Gallagher

Doris Gallagher was born on 6 March 1915 at home in William Street, Korumburra.  Doris was born to an Irish father John Patrick Gallagher (1870-1952), and mother Elizabeth Prideaux (1874-1947), the last of seven children born to the couple.

Their first born child Thelma was born two years before John and Elizabeth were married with no father’s name listed on her birth certificate. On Doris’s birth certificate, under previous children, father John (the informant) does not list Thelma at all as one of his children.

Doris was baptised at St Josephs Roman Catholic church in Korumburra in 1915. Sadly a year later in 1916 her brother Roy died, aged only two.

Bena Butter Factory

Doris’s father John worked as a labourer around Bena, and then in 1910 was working at the Bena Butter factory. By the time of Doris’s birth in 1915 the family had moved into Korumburra, and John was labouring once more.


By 1919 the family had moved to Victoria Street, Korumburra, where they lived for many years.

Doris as a young lady

Doris attended the St Joseph’s convent school and in December 1922, she appeared in the local paper (Great Southern Advocate, Korumburra) as attending the Juvenile Ball at the Mechanics Hall, to raise money for the school.

There were eighty children present, and it was night of great excitement and seven year old Doris, along with her sister Gladys, and lots of other children won a prize.

By 1931 the family had moved to 20 Golding Street, Canterbury, with John listed as a labourer and their daughter Thelma was working as a tailoress. (Victorian Electoral Rolls).


In 1936 the family were still there, with John, a labourer, wife Elizabeth and daughter Mary, home duties, son John as a tinsmith, and Thelma a tailoress.

Doris and brother Jack and sister Gladys and Lila

Doris was also a tailoress and worked as a machinist at 228 Collins Street in the city of Melbourne. She sewed a variety of outfits, but mainly mens suits at this address.

Doris on her wedding day

In 1943 Doris, while out with her friends dancing in the city of Melbourne, met a young West Australian soldier – Charlie Pickering.

After a brief courtship the couple were engaged, and then the next time Charlie came home on leave they were married on 21 August 1943 at St Dominic’s Roman Catholic Church in East Camberwell.

Charlie was born over in Perth, West Australia and had enlisted in the AIF in 1940. He served with the 2nd 2nd Commandos and was sent off to fight in Timor, New Guinea and New Britian.

Doris and baby Jennifer

While he was away overseas his first daughter Jennifer Pickering was born in August 1945, at Camberwell.

Doris was still living with parents at their home at 20 Golding Street. Jennifer married Michael and has five children.

Her husband Charlie was finally discharged from the army on 10th January 1946 at Royal Park Depot in Melbourne, Victoria, and in  1948 their second daughter Anne Pickering was born in Camberwell. Anne married Trevor and had two daughters.

John and Elizabeth Gallagher with Doris, Anne and Jennifer Pickering

Kildare Street, Burwood


In 1949 Charles and Doris built a home, after they were granted a WW2 soldier settlement block at 28 Kildare Street in Burwood where they continued to live raising their daughters, and eventually retiring.

Claude and Barbara Smith, Michael and Jenny, Charlie and Doris Pickering



In February 1968 Doris and Charlie attended the wedding of their first daughter Jennifer.

Also in the photo was Michael’s mother Barbara and her third husband Claude.




Charlie and Doris holding Brendan


Charlie and Doris were pleased when their first grandchild arrived in December 1968.






Doris’s husband Charlie passed away on 18 October 1995 aged 80. He was always known as papa to his grandchildren.

Dot, or nanna, as she was known died on 11 June 1997 at Box Hill hospital, aged 82 years after a battle with pneumonia. She is buried at the Springvale Cemetery with her husband.