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"Signature Stamp, Joy Cummings" [2008/27.2]
2008/27.2
Signature Stamp, Joy Cummings
Type Museum Collection
Registration Number 2008/27.2
Date Created circa 1955
Place of Creation Australia
Physical Description Small rectangular block of five ply ply-wood with a metal plate tacked to the bottom. The metal plate has raised detail in the form of a persons signature.
Subject Classification BUSINESS EQUIPMENT
GOVERNMENT
Notes Signature stamps where used widely in offices where large amounts of documents needed to be signed quickly by or on behalf of the signatory. Today electronic signatures and printing are used instead.

Joy Cummings was the first woman Alderman to be elected to the Newcastle City Council in 1968 and was to be elected Lord Mayor of Newcastle during 1974, being the first woman to obtain this office in Australia. She served two terms as Lord Mayor, retiring from politics in 1984 due to a stroke.

Born Joyce Anne Plumbe on 23rd December 1923 at Ramsgate, South of Sydney. Her family moved to the Newcastle area at the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 when her father, a fireman, was transferred to the Scott Street Brigade. It was here that she met and married Ray Cummings, who was also a fireman, together raising a family of four children.

Joy became a member of the Australian Labor Party at the age of 15 during 1938 and later entered local politics in 1968. During her political career she was active in promoting environmental and heritage conservation, the arts, local business and industry, and social reforms. Some of her achievements included the preservation of the East End of Newcastle and Cooks Hill, the refurbishment of the Civic Theatre, and the preservation of Blackbutt Reserve and the Shortland Wetlands. She was also a vocal opponent to the closure of the Newcastle State Dockyards. Two significant social reforms was the use by her of Advance Australia Fair during Citizenship Ceremonies in 1977 and the flying of the Aboriginal flag over the town hall, both of which were Australian firsts.

Joy Cummings died in Newcastle on 2nd July 2003.

Source: 'Australian Women Fact File: Joyce Anne Cummings' (Jessie Street National Women's Library); http://203.147.135.214/index.html
Inscription 'Joy Cummings' (stamp face in reverse)
Multimedia
2008/27.2 (reversed)
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