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Frances Little (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,, accessed 19 April 2024.

© Copyright Indigenous Australia, 2012

Life Summary [details]

Alternative Names
  • McGee, Frances

Koondrook, Victoria, Australia


23 July, 1950 (aged ~ 30)
Nowra, New South Wales, Australia

Cause of Death


Cultural Heritage

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Religious Influence

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