Indigenous Australia

  • Tip: searches only the name field
  • Tip: Use double quotes to search for a phrase

Browse Lists:

Cultural Advice

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website contains names, images, and voices of deceased persons.

In addition, some articles contain terms or views that were acceptable within mainstream Australian culture in the period in which they were written, but may no longer be considered appropriate.

These articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Australian National University.

Older articles are being reviewed with a view to bringing them into line with contemporary values but the original text will remain available for historical context.

Little, Frances (1920–1950)

Frances ‘Cissy’ McGee (1920–1950), chorister, was born at Koondrook, Victoria, in 1920, the youngest of thirteen children of Yorta Yorta parents Janet and Ernest McGee. She sang in the Cummeragunja Aboriginal choir until 1935. On 14 August 1935, she married James Little, a gum leaf band musician and entertainer, at the Koondrook Baptist Church. They had seven children, two of whom died in infancy. She and James took part in the Cummeragunja walk-off in 1939, carrying their infant son, Jimmy, off the reserve and crossing the Dhungala (Murray River) from New South Wales into Victoria. She died of tetanus at Nowra on 23 July 1950. Her descendants include Jimmy Little, singer, musician, and philanthropist, and Deborah Cheetham, soprano, actor, composer and playwright.

Original Publication

Citation details

'Little, Frances (1920–1950)', Indigenous Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, https://ia.anu.edu.au/biography/little-frances-31734/text39185, accessed 26 July 2021.

© Copyright Indigenous Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • McGee, Frances
Birth

1920
Koondrook, Victoria, Australia

Death

23 July 1950
Nowra, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death

tetanus

Cultural Heritage
Religious Influence
Occupation
Key Organisations