Aboriginal Elder Aunty Jessie Clarke turns 100

Sep 21, 2015, 11:14 PM

Aboriginal Elder Aunty Jessie Clarke from Bordertown (SA/Vic border) turned 100 on 21 September 2015

More than 300 friends and relatives filled the Bordertown Hall on Saturday for an early celebration of the milestone.

Aunty Jessie was born at Swan Hill. Her mother was Aboriginal; her father was English.

She married an Aboriginal man, Laurie Clarke, and they moved to the Bordertown area where they lived in a hut on what local white people called 'blacks' camp,' and that's where they raised eight children.

Aboriginal people were not permitted to live in houses in the town.

In 1964 Laurie heard word that welfare officers were coming to take their four younger children away.

With help from some locals the family left in a hurry for Wolseley and in the process their hut was bulldozed along with possessions they'd intended to go back and collect.

Here are some audio highlights from Saturday's celebration.