Ada Alma Snushall

Ada (Rae) Alma Snushall, aka Snashall, was born to George and Catherine Snushall about 1899 in Bathurst NSW. She was the last of nine children. Her older sisters were Sarah (Ivy) Emily, Elizabeth (Edna) May, Maude Ada Ethel Victoria and Ida (deceased). Her brothers were Lindsay Murdock Graham, William (Bill) Harold, Collan Graham and Edward (Ted) James.

Ada and Richard Holding married at the St. Barnabas Church of England Church in Sydney on 21 February 1920. Witnesses at the marriage were her brother, Edward, and her mother, Catherine. The record of marriage stated that Ada was born about 1899 in Bathurst and she was 21 years of age at the time she married Richard. He was 29. They had a child, Raymond Holding, in 1920 that died that same year, possibly stillborn. Ada and Richard divorced on the 15 April 1925.

Ada married Ernest Victor Williams about that same year at Towoomba in Queensland. Ada was 26 when she married. They had a son, Brian E. Williams, born about 1930.

Ada was mostly referred to as Rae by her friends and relatives. She was also known as June Russell, which was her business name that she used when she established a large, thriving hairdressing business comprising hairdressing salons and colleges in both New South Wales and Queensland. A grandson of Maude Attwood, Rae's older sister, remembered "June Russell" as a very successful businesswoman who started off as a hairdresser who opened her first shop in Oxford Street Sydney. 


June Russell Salon in Oxford Street, Sydney - 1940.
Photograph courtesy of City of Sydney Archives

Maude's grandson wrote: "JR was married to a guy named Williams, whose Christian name I no longer recall, who had a successful Jewelry business in King Street Newtown about half a mile past Newtown station. Even after their divorce he still had the jeweler store 20 years later. After she was divorced, while working at a shoe store in Newtown she had the idea of opening a ladies hairdressing business in vacant premises upstairs near the shoe store. JR had no hairdressing experience. She employed a hairdresser and it was immediately successful. June Russell was born! Her whole idea was to keep prices down. Cheap rents, small profits and lots of shops. Very successful! Permanent waves for ten shillings & sixpence at a time when the normal price was somewhere between 2 & 5 pounds"

Another relative advises that her brother, Ray Snashall, managed the hair salon at Newtown.

At its peak in the 40's and 50's, the June Russell Enterprise comprised 54 hair salons and two hairdressing colleges in NSW and Qld. Roy Attwood, worked for 20 years as the Queensland Manager for June Russell Enterprises. "June Russell" is well remembered and I was informed that she had a weekly radio program on Radio 2KY which advertised her business and played a popular jingle. One relative that I spoke with recalled that during, or shortly after the Depression when her brother died, June arranged for her chauffeur driven car to pick up the family and drive them to the church service and cemetery. June was very kind, generous and supportive of her extended family.

June Russell sponsored an annual Ball, which she would attend looking rather glamorous. Her son, Brian Williams, would attend in evening wear looking very impressive and there would be huge displays of picked flowers, which her friends and relatives would be encouraged to take bunches home after the event. Her chauffeur would pick up close relatives and take them to the event and home again at the end of the night.

Another relative adds: "Auntie Rae was everything and more than you have already been told. The people who attended her genteel parties at her Dover Heights home were treated to no expense spared cuisine & professional attention. Her guest list tells more of this lady than I can. The racing and radio fraternity were well represented, some small, some big business people, her family and endless friends".

Ada Alma Snashall (Williams) aka June Russell

Roy Attwood, worked for "Rae" as her manager in Queensland until her death in the Helenie Private Hospital at Randwick on 9th February 1957. She died of Cardiac Arrest following frequent attacks of Auricular Fibrillation the previous 2 days and having suffered Aortic Stenosis for the previous 30 years. At the time of her death, Ada was described as a Company Director living at 49 Church Street, Randwick NSW. Her body was cremated at the Eastern Suburbs Crematorium on 11th February 1957.

As mentioned above, her son, Brian was born about 1930. Ada's Death Certificate stated that he was age 27 when she died in 1957. At the time of his mother's death Brian and his wife, Margaret, had two children - Judith and Kerrie Williams. Brian was well educated and attended Sydney University and became a qualified chemist. He had 2 chemist shops before his mother died and after disposing of the hairdressing business he was working as a Traveler for a drug company. Her son sold the business shortly after his mother's death.