Menu toggle

National Museum of Australia

Where our stories come alive

Collection Explorer


Envelope containing a letter from Joan Richmond to her mother


Envelope containing a letter from Joan Richmond to her mother

Object information


This letter has been incorrectly dated. It was actually written in 1931.

Physical description

A handwritten letter with envelope. The letterhead on the paper reads "Atcherley / Private Hotel", and the letter is dated "Aug 25th 1933". It opens "My Darling Ma / We are as you see by / luscious notepaper ...", and closes "Cheerio My Darling Love from Joan". The envelope has the same letterhead, and is addressed to "Mrs John Richmond". It is postmarked "BRISBANE / 1130PM / 25 AUG / 1931 / QLD".

Statement of significance

The Joan Richmond collection consists of items related to the motor racing career of Joan Richmond. These include a racing suit, goggles, a trophy, number plates, a personal journal, letters, photographs and newspaper clippings.

Joan Richmond (1905-1999) was a successful racing car driver at a time when women racing drivers were not only a rarity, but competed in the same events as men. Richmond's first major event was the 1931 Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island in which she drove a Riley and placed a creditable fifth. Shortly after, Richmond and four friends embarked on an overland journey from Australia to Europe in order to compete in the Monte Carlo rally. This journey is credited as the first international overland tour to have originated from Australia. Following the group's successful completion of the rally, Victor Riley offerd to sponsor Richmond and in 1932, she supported the English racing car driver, Elsie Wisdom, to win the 1000 Mile Race at Brooklands. Throughout the 1930s, Richmond stayed in England and competed in more motor racing events, including several Monte Carlo rallies and the Le Mans 24 Hour race. She returned to Australia in the 1940s but was unable to continue her motor racing career due to a lack of money and sponsorship. Joan Richmond died in Melbourne in 1999.

Object information

Back to top