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Edwin Oswald was an elderly man, who in lived with his wife in Bayswater. If you get our meaning. Fortunately for Edwin, he knew where some was available on King William Street in Bayswater and wrote a very precise letter stating the date and time he would turn up, together with a few somewhat explicit lines detailing what he would require when he got there.
Then he put the missive in the mailbox and waited for the appointment. At 7pm on his chosen day in March , he arrived and knocked on the door. The door was opened by Mrs Ethel Drew who demanded to know what he wanted. The pair had once been friends, and had fallen out for some reason or other now lost to us.
She went around the neighbourhood letting mothers know that all sons should beware of a certain house on King William Street.
And Edith was not without good evidence. Oh no. And why would an innocent widow have pyjamas on a line unless she was a hooker? Why indeed, we would still ask today. So, like the good Christian she was, Edith went straight to the parson of the church where both Edith and Ethel worshipped, and demanded he denounce her neighbour from the pulpit. Rather understandably, Rev Howes declined the offer, even though Edith pointed out that the church was now in the unenviable position of taking offerings each Sunday from a woman of ill repute.
The visit of Edwin Oswald to her door seems to have been the last straw for the much-maligned Ethel, who sued her neighbour for slander. Which presumably meant that Ethel could dress very nicely indeed after that victory. Take for example, Charles Sonesson who came down to Fremantle from Narrogin in The upstairs bedrooms were described as considerably large and clean.