Posts categorized as History

Confessions of a bounty hunter: Discovering New Zealand’s first fossil bug

Fossil of a march fly

Inspired by his recent visit to the exhibition Bug Lab, resident geologist Hamish Campbell recounts finding New Zealand’s first pre-Pleistocene fossil bug. A momentous occasion In October 1981 a cheque arrived in the post for the princely sum of £5, drawn on a BNZ bank account owned by Sir Charles Fleming. My father Doug Campbell… Read more »

‘Bone dry’: The ups and downs of banning booze

Christmas and New Year empties, 4 January 2017. Photo by Kirstie Ross

Like a tipple? History curator Kirstie Ross looks at the ways New Zealand tried to curb excessive drinking in the early 1900s and its affect on society. As you get rid of the last of your Christmas and New Year’s empties, stop for a minute and reflect back 98 years, to 17 January 1919 when the 18th Amendment of the… Read more »

20th century history mixtape: ‘B’ side

Record - "Hit Tunes" by Johnny Devlin, circa 1958, New Zealand, by Johnny Devlin, Southern Music. Purchased 2001 with New Zealand Lotteries Grant funds. Te Papa (GH009364)

Slice of Heaven: 20th Century Aotearoa is Te Papa’s exhibition about four crucial social and political changes that occurred in New Zealand after the death of Queen Victoria in 1901 and before the millennial panic of ‘Y2K’ (‘Year 2000’). I hope that the exhibition, which closes on 23rd January to make room for the new… Read more »

The treasures of Broadgreen Historic House

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Conservator Anne Peranteau visited Broadgreen, an historic house in the Stoke neighborhood, to give some advice on the display and storage of collection items. Anne tells us about some of her favourite items in the Broadgreen collections.  Last month I filled my suitcase with my tricks of the trade and headed to Nelson. I brought an assortment of… Read more »

The history of Christmas dinner in New Zealand

Cheslyn Rise - Christmas dinner, circa 1920, by Leslie Adkin. Gift of G. L. Adkin family estate, 1964. Te Papa (B.022885)

With festive eatables on everyone’s mind at this time of year, history curator Katie Cooper traces the history of the Christmas dinner in New Zealand, and considers how our antipodean Yuletide has changed since its first celebration in 1642. The First Festive Feasts Abel Tasman and the crews of the Heemskerck and Zeehaen were the… Read more »

A ‘Raphael’ just for you this Christmas

whanganui-madonna

Mark Stocker, Curator International Historical Art, shares a Christmas delight with you: Raphael’s Madonna della Sedia, the Palazzo Pitti original and the Whanganui copy… Michelangelo and Raphael are the Lennon and McCartney of the High Renaissance. Michelangelo – edgy, original and obviously brilliant, Raphael – beautiful, sweeter and keener to please. It’s like ‘Help’ and… Read more »

Kiwi culinary history from Aunt Daisy to Hudson and Halls

Aunt Daisy, also known as Maud Ruby Basham. New Zealand Free Lance : Photographic prints and negatives. Ref: 1/2-046733-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23043179

Inspired by a trip to see Hudson and Halls Live! at Hannah Playhouse, history curator Katie Cooper decided to find out more about Hudson and Halls, and other key figures in New Zealand’s culinary history. Using various communication platforms to demonstrate their craft, these individuals combined skill and charm to inform, empower, and entertain their audiences,… Read more »

Collecting the Standing Rock protest and why it’s important

standing-rock

A protest movement you might have heard about, which I’ve been following closely, is the protest occupation against the North Dakota pipeline at Standing Rock in the United States. The Dakota Access Pipeline (represented online by the hashtag #NODAPL No Dakota Access Pipeline) has prompted protests across the United States as well as expressions of solidarity… Read more »

Conflicted loyalties: Berry Boys conscripted for war

  • Portrait of Cecil Theobald Coate, 1917, Wellington, by William Berry. Purchased 1998 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds. Te Papa (B.046296)
  • Portrait of Jack Langley Braddock, 1917, Wellington, by William Berry. Purchased 1998 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds. Te Papa (B.044362)
  • Portrait of Herbert James Freeman with Marguerita Freeman and baby Zena, 1917, Wellington, by William Berry. Purchased 1998 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds. Te Papa (B.045581)
  • Portrait of Harry Luckman with Ellen Luckman and baby Harry George Luckman, 1917, Wellington, by William Berry. Purchased 1998 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds. Te Papa (B.043586)

History curator Kirstie Ross explores the stories of four ‘Berry Boys’ who were conscripted in the first and second conscription ballots 100 years ago. In 1916, after two years of fighting, it was clear that New Zealanders’ loyalty to ‘King and Country’ was competing with other concerns – and fewer men were volunteering. Conscription was… Read more »