HONOURED: Grandchildren of Henry Arthur Kellow Roslyn (Kellow) McGovern and Dr John Kellow with Rockhampton historian Lorna McDonald.
HONOURED: Grandchildren of Henry Arthur Kellow Roslyn (Kellow) McGovern and Dr John Kellow with Rockhampton historian Lorna McDonald. Michelle Gately

The woman who knows plenty of Rockhampton's secrets

KEEP your mind and body active.

That's the secret to living a long and happy life from Rockhampton historian Lorna McDonald who, at 100, has just celebrated the re-launch of an expanded copy of her 1981 biography of Rockhampton Grammar School principal Henry Arthur Kellow.

Ms McDonald collaborated with Rockhampton publisher Coorooman Press on the expanded edition, which she worked on for most of 2015.

She said it was important to support the small press, especially with a lack of dedicated book shops in the city.

Buy the book

  • The Moving Mind: A Life of Henry Arthur Kellow (1881-1935) by Lorna McDonald is available at the CQUniversity Bookshop, Rockhampton Art Gallery gift shop and the Rockhampton Heritage Village

A few months ago, Ms McDonald celebrated her centenary with a backyard birthday party featuring friends and family from as far away as Norway.

Henry Arthur Kellow
Henry Arthur Kellow Contributed

She said Mr Kellow proved an important subject because of his distinguished role as headmaster of the prestigious school.

>>READ: Education, adventure and a shooting: Rocky school's fascinating history immortalised in new book

Ms McDonald has published 21 books covering a range of Queensland history, from the west through to details of Rockhampton's founding Archer family.

It's an impressive feat for someone who, after raising a family, went back to study her PhD in history in her mid-40s.

She chose history over English literature because it suited her home life and care for an invalid husband better.

But it's something she's truly passionate about and a pursuit which has changed her life.

"Almost all my friends have been made through research," Ms McDonald said.

She said her life had been privileged by her research and history work.

Although she said she hasn't got another book in her, Ms McDonald isn't giving up learning and continues to read books on a range of subjects.

"I like to read things I haven't studied," she said.

"I've been reading over the past 12 months geology and biology, scientific books, something outside my area.

"There's always something new to learn.

"You're never too old to learn."



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