Digitising the First New Zealand Missionaries

Tuesday, September 25th, 2018 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Post researched and written by intern William Sharp

You wouldn’t believe what missionaries got up to. From chasing wild bulls in the bush to drinking on a convict ship, their interesting antics lead to many a pious and passive-aggressive argument between them. Soon, you will be able to update yourself on all of the latest missionary gossip from the comfort of your own home. Thanks to the generosity of the Hocken Collections and my tireless labour, more letters and journals of early New Zealand missionaries will be available on the internet for all to read.

Over the past semester I have been working as an intern at the Hocken Collections for my HUMS301 course at Otago University. The purpose of my work has been to add more material to the website ‘Marsden Online.’

Marsden Online is a website built by the Otago University Library and the Hocken Collections for the purpose of making historical documents more accessible to the public and to students. As can be seen in its name, Marsden Online is based on material that relates to the New Zealand missionary, Samuel Marsden (1765-1838).

Reverend Samuel Marsden by James Fittler, Hocken Collections ref 23,602

Samuel Marsden is an important figure in the history of New Zealand because of his leading role in the establishment of the Church Missionary Society Mission in the Bay of Islands. He is often attributed as having brought Christianity to New Zealand and is said to have given the first sermon in New Zealand history on Christmas day of 1814. Marsden Online, therefore, not only holds incredibly interesting material, but also documents that are very important to New Zealand history.

The website primarily holds letters and journals written by New Zealand missionaries working with and for Marsden. All of the material is Church Missionary Society correspondence taken from bound volumes kept in the Hocken Archives Collection. The founder of the Hocken Collections, Thomas Morland Hocken, acquired the documents in these volumes from the Church Missionary Society in 1903 and bound them himself.

599 of the documents from Hocken’s volumes have been made available on Marsden Online to date. They can be viewed as high definition pictures and they all have corresponding transcriptions which can be downloaded in multiple file formats.

All of the digital transcriptions of these documents were written by Gordon Parsonson. Parsonson is a retired academic who has studied missionaries in the Pacific and is a key figure in the founding of Marsden Online through the enormous amount of material he has digitally transcribed for it.

My job, specifically, has been to record the details of all of the documents held in two of the bound volumes of CMS correspondence that have not yet been added to Marsden Online. This amounts to over 300 individual documents, including letters, journals, affidavits, cheques, reports, tables, diagrams and more. By recording the details of all of these documents, such as the dates they were written and their authors, I am enabling them to be added to the website.

Once images of the documents have been taken and uploaded, the information I have recorded will be assigned to the documents in order for them to be searchable on the website and will provide the reader with basic information on each document, such as who wrote it, when, who it was sent to and its physical size. I also have to assign the corresponding Parsonson transcription to each document. This can mean a lot of file-searching and reading massive amounts of rushed early 19th century handwriting, so my work does have some significant challenges.

I have even had to do some transcribing myself where a transcription has been incomplete, incorrect or missing altogether. This has been my favourite part of my work, as it has allowed me to read the material in-depth.

The writings of Samuel Marsden and his fellow missionaries are incredibly interesting, but don’t take my word for it, go have a look for yourself! The 313 documents I have recorded may not be available on Marsden Online for some time, but, rather than wait, you could spend that time reading the 599 already there!

Reading between the lines in Blighty

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018 | David Murray | No Comments

Post written researched and written by Kari Wilson-Allan, Collections Assistant – Archives

‘Blighty’, New Zealand YMCA booklet of advice for soldiers on leave in London (c.1917), MS-1474/143 in Dr Aaron Fox Military history collection.

Blighty is a tiny (72 by 124mm) pocket book, published by the New Zealand Young Men’s Christian Association.  Despite its diminutive size, it contains worlds of insight into respectable expectations of service men on leave. Judging by its condition, our copy has certainly seen some sights. Throughout the lightweight guide, soldiers are encouraged to seek out wholesome entertainment, to take advantage of British hospitality, develop friendships and make the most of their leave in London.The text suggests itineraries for touring the city or venturing further afield, to Scotland, Ireland, or Wales.  It advises of ‘host families’ throughout the British Isles who welcome Kiwis into their homes; declaring that ‘hundreds have already availed themselves of this privilege,’ it then asks the soldier ‘is this not just what you are wanting?’

The YMCA was widely considered during wartime to be ‘practical Christianity.’[i] This booklet supports that. Along with all the tips on where to go, what to see, and how to get there, there is plenty of detail about the various churches in London that a soldier might wish to attend.

Yet, towards the end of the guide, the reader is returned to thoughts of New Zealand. Nostalgia is provoked with a map, and a verse, schmaltzy to modern eyes, reminds the soldier what he is fighting for: New Zealand, ‘the fount of pure freedom.’

While the booklet itself is undated, and was originally catalogued as such, this verse, by Lt. A.H. Bogle, has been the clue to determining its age.  A bit of research showed up Bogle as the winner of the National Song Competition, held in 1917. His success was announced in various New Zealand newspapers from September of that year.  Therefore, the guidebook dates from late 1917, or perhaps early 1918.  Based on its content, this does not seem surprising.  By mid-late 1917 enthusiasm for the war reportedly had waned significantly,[ii] and I wonder if the song competition, and the booklet itself, were intended to boost flagging spirits.

Although it is interesting to see what soldiers were encouraged to do, I found myself reading through the book feeling that there was a massive gap in the useful advice proffered. Nowhere was there guidance on avoiding venereal disease, the scourge that, at a restrained estimate, infected twenty percent of our troops.[iii] As a Christian publication this isn’t too unexpected, but then I read closer.  The guidance is there, if veiled.  Just as we might read between the lines to the inferred homoeroticism in the Village People’s 1978 hit, YMCA, we can read through the lines here, and find delicate guidance in the art of maintaining one’s honour.

First the soldier is met with an image of a woman and two young girls ‘awaiting your return.’ Surely these are proxies for the soldier’s wife and daughters, or other family members. This visual representation prompts the soldier to remember the faces he holds dear.

Then there’s the text itself. Recall the VD statistics, and you’ll see what’s being underlined here; it’s certainly not just monogamy:

‘soil not her faith in you by sin or shame’

‘when base temptations scorch you with their flame’

‘O keep for her dear sake a stainless name’

These matters were presumably too indecent for an organisation such as the YMCA to broach directly. That was more the style of Ettie Rout, the celebrated and reviled campaigner for safer sexual liaisons in wartime, yet they still found a way.  Regrettably, we cannot know how many men took heed and brought ‘back to her a manhood free from shame!’

[i] Evening Post, 26 September 1917, p.7

[ii] https://nzhistory.govt.nz/war/first-world-war-overview/defending-our-shores

[iii] Tolerton, Jane, Ettie Rout – New Zealand’s safer sex pioneer, 2015, p.19.

Murder on the Maungatapu

Thursday, August 2nd, 2018 | David Murray | No Comments

Post researched and written by Jennie Henderson, Hocken Collections Assistant  – Publications

In 1866, a gang of four goldfield criminals murdered five men (and their horse) on the Maungatapu track near Nelson. The subsequent search for the bodies, trial, and execution of some of the murderers seized the attention of the nation. Newspapers were full of the events for weeks and even years afterwards.

At the Hocken Collections, tucked away in the middle of a bound volume of pamphlets, are three letters from the accused to legal officials in the trial, which provide an enticing window into the case…

But first, some background:

The accused men were labelled ‘The Burgess Gang’: Richard Burgess, Joseph Sullivan, Philip Levy, and Thomas Kelly.

Photos of Burgess, Levy, Kelly, and Sullivan taken during the trial (from “A full history of the Maungatapu murders: including a narrative of the events preceding the murders, confessions of Sullivan & Burgess, a corrected report of the trial, detailed particulars of the execution of Burgess, Kelly and Levy, and lives of the murderers, with portraits, and plans and sections of the road”. Nelson: 1866).

Burgess and Kelly were both transported convicts, who had lived a life of crime on the Australian goldfields and been in and out of gaol there, until following the gold to Otago in 1862.  They served three years in gaol in Dunedin for theft and attempted murder, before travelling to the West Coast and forming a new gang there with Sullivan and a former acquaintance, Levy.[1]

In the course of numerous robberies and assaults on the West Coast goldfields, Levy heard talk of a party of businessmen planning to travel from Canvastown to Nelson to deposit their earnings in the bank.  Excited by the rumour that the businessmen would be carrying up to £1000, the gang made a plan to rob them.

On June 12, 1866, they positioned themselves on the track, by what would later become known as Murders Rock.  A flax grower in his fifties, James Battle, travelling along the track, was stopped by the gang and initially they let him pass. They later decided that he may be able to identify them, and some of the gang chased him down and killed him, robbing him of his wages of £3.17s.[2]

The attack on and murder of James Battle (as reproduced in Hill, Richard, Policing the Colonial Frontier: the theory and practice of coercive social and racial control in New Zealand, 1767-1867. Wellington: Historical Publications Branch Dept of Internal Affairs, 1986).

On June 13, the party of four businessmen – George Dudley, James de Pontius, Felix Mathieu, and John Kempthorne, and their horse – named Old Farmer – were held up, robbed, and murdered by the Burgess Gang.[3]  They burned the men’s’ clothes and other evidence, and hid three of the bodies, leaving the fourth in a manner intended to suggest he was the culprit, if the bodies were ever found.  The gang then returned to Nelson, to spend their ill-gotten gains of just over £16 each, nowhere near the amount that they had hoped for.[4]

Caption: Burgess shoots Kempthorne on Maungatapu Mountain (as reproduced in Byron, Ken. ‘Guilty wretch that I am’: echoes of Australian Bushrangers from the death row memoirs of Richard Burgess. South Melbourne: Macmillan, 1984).

In Nelson, a friend of the businessmen was waiting for their arrival in order to take Old Farmer back to Canvastown.  When the party did not arrive, he raised the alarm.  Police began to investigate the matter on June 18.  Suspicion fell quickly on the Burgess Gang, who had been seen by a number of witnesses heading in the direction of the Maungatapu track, and had been spending money in Nelson over the last few days.  The four men were arrested on June 18 and 19.  The citizens of Nelson were horrified by the apparent crime, and a large search party was formed, finding Old Farmer’s body and a gun on June 20.

While the search continued in the difficult terrain, Sullivan took advantage of an offer from the Governor of a pardon to any accomplice to the murders who gave information resulting in a conviction of the murderer(s).[5] He gave a full confession, implicating his three partners in crime (but not himself), and directing police to the bodies, which were found on June 29.  Sullivan also later disclosed to the police the location of James Battle’s body, as his disappearance had gone unreported.

The victims were all buried together in a mass grave at Wakapuaka Cemetery, their bodies escorted by a massive procession of the citizens of Nelson.[6]  A monument to the victims was erected after a public collection, and its inscription conveys a strong sense of the outrage of the local people at these events:

This monument was erected by public subscription in memory of five late residents of the province of Marlborough who are interred here. They were waylaid, robbed, and barbarously murdered by a gang of four bushrangers, on the Maungatapu Mountain, in this province, June 12 and 13 1866 / Avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath for it is written. Vengeance is mine: I will repay saith the Lord. Romans XII 19.[7]

While in gaol awaiting trial, Burgess wrote a now infamous confession/autobiography that contradicted Sullivan’s confession, and claimed that Levy and Kelly were innocent of the actual murders. Burgess’ confession is long and written in an attractive literary style, and is considered a classic of crime writing.[8]

The trial ran from September 12-18.  Despite Burgess’ counter-confession, Burgess, Levy, and Kelly were found guilty and sentenced to death by hanging.  They were executed at a specially-constructed gallows on October 5.  Levy went to his death protesting his innocence.  Sullivan was tried for and found guilty of the murder of James Battle.  He was sentenced to death, which was later downgraded to life imprisonment. He was sent to Dunedin gaol for a time, and then released on the condition he left New Zealand.  After some time in England, he travelled to Australia where he was arrested by Australian authorities while trying to make contact with his wife and family. It seems he may have been relocated by the government, and then passed into legend somewhat with no confirmed sightings after this time.[9]

The pre-meditation and cold brutality of the murders, and especially the controversy of the competing confessions, seized the imagination and fired the indignation of the New Zealand public. Newspapers at the time were full of the story, following every twist and turn in the search and the trial.[10] A ‘grand moving diorama of the Maungatapu murders, occupying 2000 feet of canvas’ was touring the country by November 1866.[11] The local Nelson paper, the Examiner, printed a booklet covering the details of the case and the trial, and providing much desired detail about the chequered pasts of the accused.

An original 1866 copy of this booklet, with maps and photos, was bound with other pamphlets by Justice H.S. Chapman and gifted to the Hocken.[12] In the back of this pamphlet are secured three letters: one from Burgess to Mr Adams, a prosecutor; one from Sullivan to Mr Sharpe, a Nelson Court registrar; and one from Levy and Kelly to Sergeant-Major Shallcrass, a police officer who was involved with the case.

The letters highlight how important the finer details of the case were in determining whose account was correct: Burgess or Sullivan.

Nelson Gaol
Sept. 1th 1868, Saturday night
To Mr Adams,
Respected Sir,

I forgot to mention in my previous requests for your official aid and furtherance one item of importance, to the carrying out of justice to all concerned, so I have taken the liberty of again intruding myself on you, to see that my application to you is attended too, it is this. If you remember Sullivan stated, the balls we had with us, and some of which were drawn from the gun he threw away, were stolen from the Grey[?], no such thing, they were purchased. Now I wish that you Telegraph, the authorities at the Grey, and cause them to make inquiry at Mr Helier’s shooting gallery, next door the Star Hotel, whether he remembers the night of Friday, the first of June, selling five shillings worth of balls to anyone, on the same night, the ramrod was [?]. With this being sent through the Government it will be sufficient proof, without issuing subpoenas for their attendance, note the address Mr Eli Helier next the Star Hotel.

I remain your ever obliged and humble servant,

Richard Burgess.

*******************

Mr Sharpe

Sir

I would thank you if you would have a Summons served upon the Witness Harvey to attend in the case of James Battle.

For in Burgess’ confession he says that Kelly & Levey left us at the Bridge to proceed into Nelson Mr Galloway can prove that there men Harveys party where but a short distance ahead of us.

My statement is this that at the time Burgess & Levey where securing the man Battle there was a gun discharged and I went up the road and I heard the Report of another gun and then I observed three men upon the road near Franklyn’s Flat.

If I could see these men where was Kelly and Levey at this time for by the statement Burgess has made they left us at the Bridge and it appears that Harveys Party never seen them upon the road. Suppose they must have hid themselves upon this occasion as Burgess states they did on the following day.

If it is Convenient to would thank you for the Different Distances of the road that bears upon my case.

I am Sir your Most Obedient Servant

Joseph Thomas Sullivan

*******************

And Levy’s and Kelly’s attempts to be tried by Special Jury:

Nelson Gaol

To Mr Shallcrass, [Sergeant-Major]

Sir this if to inform you that it is Our wish, as we are going to be tried for Our innocent lives, that if the laws of Our Country allows us to be tried by a Special Jury, by making application that you will Please to grant Our request, and your humble servants will for Ever Pray.

Signed Thomas Kelly

Phillip Levy

Recd 30 Sept [JWA]

*******************

The 1866 pamphlet was revised and reprinted many times due to ongoing interest in the case.  The Hocken holds issues of The Maungatapu Mountain Murders from 1890 (a Hocken original), 1909, and 1924.

Also in 1866, the murders were the inspiration for a sermon delivered by the Bishop of Wellington on ‘Ahab’s crimes and the Maungatapu Murders, treated on the principles of the new school of morals and religion.’[13] The Bishop reflects on how he would deal with communities rife with criminal behaviours such as those on the West Coast, and what message the Gospel truly brings regarding criminality.

An interesting additional layer to the case, the Hocken holds a photocopy of ‘Practical phrenology: a lecture on the heads, casts of the heads, and characters of the Maungatapu murderers, Levy, Kelly, Sullivan, and Burgess’  by A.S. Hamilton; delivered in the Provincial Hall, Nelson, for the benefit of the Maungatapu Monument Fund, October 8, 1866.

A phrenologist, Hamilton, had met with the accused before their execution to interview them and take measurements of their heads.  Casts were also made of their heads (before their execution, as there was a concern that their faces may be distorted after the hanging). The lecture, of which the Hocken item is a transcript, was given three days after the men were executed, and was intended as a fundraiser for a memorial in the cemetery. Hamilton makes bold claims about the men and their characters based on his studies:

The basilar phrenometrical angle in Kelly, marked A, is forty-two degrees. This is greatly in excess of common murderers…Kelly’s angle is of the very worst murderer’s type…

…the middle basilar section, the seat of the organs of Destructiveness, Vitativeness, Secretiveness, and Acquisitiveness [is large]; hence the terrible power of this portion of the brain in influencing his conduct for evil…[14]

From Hamilton, A. S. Practical phrenology: a lecture on the heads, casts of the heads, and characters of the Maungatapu murderers, Levy, Kelly, Sullivan, and Burgess. Nelson: 1866).

Levy’s temperament is coarse, and the bones of his skull are thick…These measurements speak in plain language, and show the moral imbecility of the man; and a glance at the deficient development of his reasoning powers, and at the great size of his organs of secretiveness and acquisitiveness, combined with the small endowment of his benevolence and conscientiousness, will at once warrant the conclusion that, in bad hands, Levy would become a willing tool in the perpetration of the foulest deeds…[p.11] Levy, in my company in prison for more than an hour, tried hard to enlist my sympathy, by crying and protesting his innocence; and it was a terribly humiliating sight to witness the idiotic efforts he made to disguise his true character…[15]

More modern authors continue to be intrigued by these events, and the Hocken holds a number of interesting sources.

  • Clune, Frank. Murders on Maunga-tapu. Sydney: Angus & Robertson, 1959.

Clune wrote historical novels, travel books, and histories of scandalous events in early NZ and Australia. This work provides a “grim account of a callous crime committed on the New Zealand goldfields in 1866… [and] an unusual study of the mental make-up of the four lying brutal Londoners who were responsible for the crime…”.

  • Burton, David, ed. Confessions of Richard Burgess: the Maungatapu murders and other grisly crimes. Wellington: Reed, 1983.

Burton gives an account of the murders, as well as a transcript of Burgess’ famous confession.

  • Byron, Ken. ‘Guilty wretch that I am’: echoes of Australian Bushrangers from the death row memoirs of Richard Burgess. South Melbourne: Macmillan, 1984.

Byron looks at Burgess’ confession in the context of the bushrangers and his criminal upbringing.

  • Hawes, Peter. Outlaws and Rogues. Auckland: Whitcoulls, 2003.

In this illustrated book for tweenagers, the Maungatapu murderers take their place beside other notorious rogues in history, such as Billy the Kid and Al Capone.

  • Martin, Wayne. Murder on the Maungatapu: a narrative history of the Burgess Gang and their greatest Christchurch: Canterbury University Press, 2016.

Martin re-examines the case with new eyes, using little-known primary sources, and suggests an alternative narrative.

  • Rosanowski, John. Treachery Road: a historical goldfields murder mystery. Christchurch: Cornwall, 2017.

Rosanowski approaches the case as a journalist in the 1890s reinvestigating the murders. He claims to have uncovered new information about Sullivan which suggests Kelly and Levy were innocent, as Burgess claimed.

Some of the Hocken Collections’ resources on the Maungatapu murders.

The fascination with this case has continued in other formats as well. In 1972, a radio play ‘Death at Murderers Rock’ was produced by the Overseas Programme Exchange Service.[16] In 2016, the Nelson Provincial Museum put on a two-part exhibition about the murders and the trial.[17] A play about the murders, by Nelson playwright Justin Eade, was performed in the Nelson/Marlborough area and later at the Arts Market in Wellington in 2016/2017.  In 2017, Burgess’ story was included in the ‘Black Sheep’ podcast.[18]

If you wish to view any of the books referenced above, or any of the Hocken Collections’ other fascinating resources, the staff here at 90 Anzac Avenue are more than happy to help.  Visit us between 10am and 5pm, Monday – Saturday. Please bring photo ID with you to register as a reader.


Footnotes:

[1] Burgess had earned something of a name for himself in Dunedin’s gaol: ‘Early in 1863, Burgess once or twice caused great danger in the Dunedin gaol. Once, he contrived to communicate with the notorious Garrett and others, so as to concert a breaking out; and he contrived to break through a thick stone wall and enter the adjoining cell.  On another occasion, he and Garrett each barricaded the door of his cell, and set the officers at defiance until the doors had been battered down. Those doors, and the others in the gaol, then opened inwards – a stupid arrangement, which was speedily altered. Burgess was flogged, and he bore his punishment with seeming indifference.’ Otago Daily Times (Dunedin, New Zealand), quoted in “A full history of the Maungatapu murders: including a narrative of the events preceding the murders, confessions of Sullivan & Burgess, a corrected report of the trial, detailed particulars of the execution of Burgess, Kelly and Levy, and lives of the murderers, with portraits, and plans and sections of the road” (Nelson: 1866), 15.

[2] Ken Byron, ‘Guilty wretch that I am’: echoes of Australian Bushrangers from the death row memoirs of Richard Burgess (South Melbourne: Macmillan, 1984), 98.

[3] The men were strangled, stabbed, and shot. For a comprehensive account of the attacks, see Wayne Martin, Murder on the Maungatapu: a narrative history of the Burgess Gang and their greatest crime (Christchurch: Canterbury University Press, 2016), 131.

[4] Martin, 132.

[5] For the poster stating the conditions of the offer of immunity, see Martin, xix.

[6] For a map of the cemetery, including the location of the monument, see http://nelson.govt.nz/services/facilities/cemeteries/cemeteries-in-nelson-2/wakapuaka-cemetery/

[7] From Wikipedia’s page on the Maungatapu murders: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maungatapu_murders#/media/File:Maungatapu_Monument_02.jpg

[8] Mark Twain described Burgess’ confession as: ‘…a remarkable paper. For brevity, succinctness, and concentration, it is perhaps without its peer in the literature of murder. There are no waste words in it; there is no obtrusion of matter not pertinent to the occasion, nor any departure from the dispassionate tone proper to a formal business statement—for that is what it is: a business statement of a murder, by the chief engineer of it, or superintendent, or foreman, or whatever one may prefer to call him.’ Mark Twain, Following the Equator: A Journey Around the World (1897), ch.XXXIII.

[9] See Martin, 249-262.

[10] A quick search of Papers Past reveals dozens of articles about the investigation, the trial, and the execution, and the backgrounds of the criminals. Even in 1935, an obituary for Alfred Mills references that he was in Nelson at the time of the Maungatapu murders. Otago Daily Times, 10 October 1935, 9.

[11] Otago Daily Times, 2 November 1866, 1. Admission was 1s.

[12] “A full history of the Maungatapu murders” is bound with Chapman Pamphlets v.14, no.13.

[13] This pamphlet is bound in Hocken Pamphlets v.79.

[14] A.S. Hamilton, “Practical phrenology: a lecture on the heads, casts of the heads, and characters of the Maungatapu murderers, Levy, Kelly, Sullivan, and Burgess” (Nelson: 1866), 4.

[15] Hamilton, 10.

[16] https://www.ngataonga.org.nz/collections/catalogue/catalogue-item?record_id=179001

[17] The Nelson Provincial Museum holds a number of items related to these events, including the head casts of Burgess, Kelly, and Levy. http://www.nelsonmuseum.co.nz/

[18] http://www.radionz.co.nz/programmes/black-sheep/story/2018617776/outlaw-the-story-of-richard-burgess

 

Between the Sheets: Gems from the Hocken sheet music collection

Wednesday, May 30th, 2018 | David Murray | No Comments

Post researched and written by Amanda Mills, Curator Music and AV

On Saturday, 26 May, Hocken hosted a public performance event to celebrate both Music Month, and some treasures of our sheet music collection. These are only a few of the gems in the collection, and items that deserve an airing to a contemporary audience. Some – Pokarekare, Blue Smoke, and Now is the Hour – are well known, but others, such as Bowling have been lost to time.

The published sheet music collection at Hocken is extensive at over 2,500 sheets that represent all styles and genres in New Zealand’s music history, from piano-and-vocal songs to atonal and avant-garde contemporary pieces, and all forms of popular music in-between. This collection has many treasures including some of our earliest music sheets: Te Heu Heu and Mrs St George’s Whalers of the Deep Deep Sea, which dates to c.1857; the first English edition of God Defend New Zealand from 1876; All Hail! Zealandia by Frederick Leech and Francis Valpy of 1874, and James Brown’s 1894 Tarakoi Waltz are only some of the gems tucked away. Contemporary treasures are collected too, and although these may not have a rarity factor at present, future researchers may rediscover them as unique items that deserve reappraisal.

Treasures in the collection are varied, but here are some highlighted in the Music Month performance.

Bowling – words by J.B. Mack, music by G. B. Laidlaw

George Laidlaw emigrated to New Zealand in 1901. He and his family settled in Dunedin, and within a year he was appointed conductor of the the Kaikorai Brass Band. During the First World War, Laidlaw was known for composing several popular songs, including British Boys (1915), with words by R.L. Christie, and When the Boys Come Home, with lyrics by G.A. Wycherley (1916). Bowling, written with lyrics by J.B. Mack, is less well-known. Written around 1912, the Evening Star of 3 August that year advertised it as played by the Kaikorai Brass Band at His Majesty’s Theatre on 7 August. The Evening Post on 7 April 1915, reporting on the death of lyricist J.B. Mack, described the song as having ‘achieved more than an average amount of popularity.’ The audience at our Music Month event participated in what might have been the song’s first public performance in over a century.

Bowling. Words by J.B. Mack; Music by G.B. Laidlaw. The London Piano Company, c. 1912. Hocken Sheet Music Collection.

Maori Battalion Marching Song – words and music by Corporal Anania Amohou

Private Anania Amohou was part of the Maori Battalion during the Second World War. He had been working on a song in his hometown of Rotorua, as part of Te Arawa’s contribution to the Centennial Exhibition, which marked 100 years since the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi. The melody was not original, taken from The Washington and Lee Swing, a University football song written in the United States in 1906. However, when Amohou’s lyrics were added, it became a New Zealand anthem, swiftly embraced by the Battalion as their own song. Published by Charles Begg and Co. in 1940, it became extremely popular, and was performed widely. On 6 November 1940, The Press reported on the song’s popularity, waxing lyrical that:

‘to have one song sung by the British Broadcasting Corporation, and by tens of thousands of people in all parts of the British Empire, emphasises a sensational “hit”, but to achieve this distinction before the song… was published is indeed one of the sensational experiences of the Music World… from one end of this country to the other, Maori Battalion Marching Song is being sung.’

Maori Battalion Marching Song. A. Amohou. Charles Begg and Company, 1940. Hocken Sheet Music Collection.

Flower of the Bush – words and music by David S. Sharp

Flower of the Bush was dedicated to Dale Austen, star of the 1928 film The Bush Cinderella, and the second Miss New Zealand. Advertised on the cover of the music sheet as a ‘N.Z. picture and a N.Z. song’, Flower of the Bush was inspired by the film, and performed at the Strand Theatre in Dunedin by the Strand Orchestra ,with arrangement by L.D. Austin. Dunedin composer David S. Sharp (or Daniel. S. Sharp as he is called here) was a prolific songwriter, with titles including Tawhaki, The Prisoner’s Return, The Fairy Tale Parade, Caring for the Rose, and Surging Seas (among others).

Flower of the Bush. Daniel. S. Sharp. [publisher unknown] c. 1928. Hocken Sheet Music Collection.

karekare Anaarranged by Paraire Tomoana; Pō Atarau (Now is the Hour) – words by Maewa Kaihau, music by Clement Scott

Pōkarekare Ana (originally known as Pōkarekare) and Pō Atarau were both written before the First World War, and both have almost moved into the realm of folk song, due to ‘the ease of which they have travelled, their oral transmission, and the conflicting sources for their composition” (Bourke, 2017, p.187).

Pōkarekare Ana (written c.1912) was attributed to Paraire Tomoana after his death, although he never claimed to have written the song. However, Tomoana and Sir Apirana Ngata did publish the lyrics in 1921, saying the song had originated in North of Auckland, becoming popular in the Devonport Narrow Neck Military Camp, before travelling to the East Cape (Bourke, 2017, p.187). Pōkarekare was often referred to as a ‘Maori Love Song’, and a favourite of entertainer Bathie Stuart, who performed it locally in 1918, with The Colonist (11 June 1919) reporting that she sung it ‘with characteristic expression.’  The song became popular again in the 1920s, with arrangements by Alfred Hill (illustrated below) and Hemi Piripata (James Philpott) in 1927, and again the following year, when Ana Hato recorded the song as part of her performance for the Duke and Duchess of York’s visit to the Tūnohopu Meeting House in Ohinemutu, Rotorua. Ernest McKinlay also recorded the song in Sydney in 1927.

Pokarekare: A Maori Love Song (arr. Alfred Hill). John McIndoe, c.1926. Hocken Sheet Music Collection.

Pō Atarau (Now Is the Hour) has a similarly unclear history. Thought to have been written sometime around 1913, the melody was adjusted from an Australian instrumental called Swiss Cradle Song by Clement Scott, with lyrics (in Māori) added around 1915 and centred on a farewell theme (Bourke, 2017, p.188). In 1919, songwriter Maewa Kaihau also used Scott’s melody for her song Haere Ra (Goodbye) Waltz Song, which had a verse that began with the lyric ‘this is the hour’, and by 1935 the song was a well-known last waltz at farewells. It was frequently heard when soldiers were departing for the Second World War, and was a popular chorus during concerts in the 1930s and 1940s. The Evening Post for 11 May 1938 has Pō Atarau listed as part of the finale of the Ngati Poneke Maori Concert at the Wellington Town Hall. The song became internationally famous in 1947, when Gracie Fields recorded it under the title Now is the Hour, and again the following year when Bing Crosby recorded it, sending the song to the top of the American music charts. Below is the inner label from the Rotorua Maori Choir’s version of the song, recorded in 1930.

Po Atarau. Rotorua Maori Choir. Columbia Records, 1930. Hocken Sound Recordings Collection.

These, and other treasures of the Hocken sheet music collection, are available to view on request, as are any recordings of these songs in Hocken’s recorded music collections. Please enquire at the reference desk, or contact the Curator, Music and AV for any further information on these collections.

References.

Bourke, C. Goodbye Maoriland: The songs and sounds of New Zealand’s Great War. Auckland: Auckland University Press, 2017.
[Unknown author]. (11 June 1919). “Empire Theatre.” The Colonist. Retrieved from https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz.
[Unknown author].  (11 May 1938). “Current Entertainments.” The Evening Post. Retrieved from https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz.
[Unknown author]. (6 November 1940). The Press. Retrieved from https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz.
[Unknown author]. (3 August 1912). The Evening Star. Retrieved from https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz.

Out of the box: the Blackie family collection

Thursday, January 11th, 2018 | David Murray | 7 Comments

Post researched and written by Ali Clarke, Hocken Collections Assistant

An undated photograph of the Blackie family farmhouse near Kaitangata. The farm was named Pendreich. MS-4443/149.

In the Blackie family farmhouse, beside the Matau branch of the Clutha River, near Kaitangata, was a large table. Into a drawer in that table went all sorts of pieces of paper, from tickets and receipts to letters and notebooks. Over more than a century and three generations, the oldest items were pushed to the back of the drawer as new items were added; a collection of fascinating items detailing the life of the farm, the family and the district accumulated.

Those papers form one part of a wonderful collection of Blackie family papers and photographs, donated to the Hocken by Judith Robinson over the past few years. We have recently completed full arrangement and description of the collection, which is now listed on our online catalogue, Hākena (reference ARC-0329).

The Blackie family, originally from Dundee, began its connection with Otago in 1848, when James Blackie arrived in Dunedin on the ‘Philip Laing’ as first school master of the Otago Free Church colony. He started a school in Dunedin, but became ill with tuberculosis; he went to Sydney late in 1850 and died there early in 1851. He had bought land for a farm near Kaitangata and, after various legal complications, his brother Davidson Blackie, plus wife Margaret Pandrich and four children, migrated to take up the land, arriving at Kaitangata in 1860. Three generations of Blackies ran the farm, while some family members branched out. Davidson Blackie’s son James was an early student of the University of Otago and the first graduate of the local Theological Hall – he served as a Presbyterian minister in Cromwell and Lumsden and large surrounding districts until his early death. His widow, Jeanetta Blackie, was first principal of the Presbyterian Women’s Training Institute (later known as Deaconess College), and one of his daughters, Agnes Blackie, was a long-serving physics lecturer at the university. Davidson’s son Alexander worked on the family farm, talking a couple of years off in the late 1870s for an extensive world tour. Alexander’s daughter Nell was a physical education teacher and inspector, while his daughter Rhoda completed a home science degree and had a long career at Southland Technical College. Nell and Rhoda both retired back to the farm, where they lived with their brother Davidson and sister Pansie. Another part of the family was in North Otago. Margaret Blackie (Rev. James and Alexander’s sister) married William Dewar; they farmed near Maheno and had a large family. Two of their sons, Alexander and Davidson, were killed in World War I.

The collection is wonderfully rich and it is only possible to highlight a few of its treasures here. There are many letters between family members and friends in New Zealand and Scotland, and also cousins in the USA, describing life in those places. There is an unusually full set of papers relating to Davidson and Margaret Blackie and children’s migration from Dundee to Otago, including their tickets, and some older items they brought with them (music, old family ledgers, school books). There are many accounts and receipts for farms and households. The papers of individual family members vary according to their work and interests. Among the items relating to the University of Otago are Rev. James Blackie’s 1870s student notebooks, Rhoda Blackie’s 1910s home science essays and Agnes Blackie’s reminiscences of her life as a student and then lecturer of physics from the 1910s to the 1950s. There are many items relating to World War I, including letters from various family members and friends on active service. A large collection of photographs ranges from 1840s and 1850s daguerreotypes to twentieth century studio portraits and informal snapshots.

We are very grateful to Judith Robinson, whose late husband Keith Robinson was a grandson of Rev. James and Jeanetta Blackie, for the donation of this collection.

Among the oldest items in the collection are these three manuscript books of music. One is named Alex Laing; there are dates in the 1810s next to some tunes. They include many traditional Scottish tunes – below is a close-up of another page from the one named Alex Laing. At first we wondered if they were for the bagpipes, but now suspect they may be for the violin. We welcome any further thoughts on that! MS-4456/180.

A receipt for two heifers, purchased by James Blackie in Dunedin in 1849, and another for two cows, a calf and a chestnut mare, which John Salmond was to take charge of for Blackie the following year. The ailing Blackie travelled to Sydney, but died there a few months later. MS-4456/126.

This is one of several letters written by Rev. Thomas Burns, religious leader of the Otago colony, to the Blackie family in Scotland about the estate of James Blackie. There is also a power of attorney for Burns to manage the estate. MS-4456/125.

A ticket for the Blackie family’s voyage from Liverpool to Auckland in 1859. They travelled from Dundee to Glasgow by train, then by steamer to Liverpool, on the ‘Shooting Star’ to Auckland, then by coastal ship to Dunedin. MS-4456/184.

During his trip to Australia, North America, Asia and Europe in 1878-1879, Alexander Blackie kept a journal. This page shows his impressions of Gallipoli: ‘This is not a large place by any means but from the amount of interest & remarks made about it both during the Crimean & Turko Russian War it is evidently a place of considerable Importance Possibly from its situation on the straits & the difficulty of forcing a passage it it once was in the hands of Russia’. MS-4456/111.

The first page of James Blackie’s notebook for zoology lectures at the University of Otago in 1879. MS-4465/006.

Some receipts relating to Rev. James Blackie’s death and funeral, 1897. He had travelled to Dunedin for medical treatment. MS-4443/082.

While there are many World War I letters in the collection, this is something rarer: letters from the South African War. James McDonald was a ploughman for the Blackies. He headed to war as a bugler with New Zealand’s 5th contingent to South Africa, writing home to his employer, Alexander Blackie. MS-4456/074.

Davidson Blackie was one of several family members to serve in World War I – these are his identification tags. He was ‘a reluctant soldier’, noted Judith Robinson; ‘When we cleared out the house in 1982/3 after cousin Rhoda died, we found his army pack, just as he left it on returning home – dirty sox, half used (cake) toothpaste etc., programmes for shipboard concerts etc’. MS-4462/047.

Perhaps the oldest photograph in the collection is this daguerrotype, dating from around the 1840s or 1850s. It is thought to be of Alexander Blackie (1788-1874), father of James and Davidson Blackie, and his second wife, Mary Henderson. MS-4443/217.

Another 1840s-1850s daguerrotype, of an unidentified man, has a beautiful case. MS-4443/212.

Agnes Blackie with her first car, ‘Matilda’, purchased in 1930. MS-4443/126.

Lel, Father Christmas, and ‘The Sun’s Babies’

Tuesday, December 19th, 2017 | David Murray | 2 Comments

Post researched and written by David Murray, Archivist

One of the cutest Christmas messages in the Hocken Collections is found on a postcard in the papers of Dunedin poet and editor Charles Brasch.

The front of the postcard shows the picturesque St John’s Anglican Church, Waikouaiti. The message on the reverse reads:

Mr Father Christmas
D.I.C.
Dunedin.

Dec 3rd

Dear Farther Christmas.
please will you give me these things
the “Suns Babys” and a doll.
love from Lesley Brasch
adress is 99 London St.
Dunedin

Lesley Brasch, known in her family as ‘Lel’, was Charles’s younger sister. Their father was the lawyer Hyam Brasch, and their mother Helene (née Fels) was related to the Hallensteins, a prominent Jewish family associated with the New Zealand Clothing Company and other businesses.

Born in 1911, Lel lived with her parents and brother at ‘Bankton’. Originally the home of Rev. Thomas Burns, and later of Sir Robert Stout, its address was 99 London Street when the postcard was used. The property was later subdivided and other houses have since been built in front of it. Its address is now 4 Stoutgate.

Lesley with her brother Charles at ‘Manono’, London Street, the property of their grandparents, Willi and Sara Fels. Bankton was a little further up the street, on the opposite side. E.A. Phillips photographer. Ref: Hocken Collections MS-0996-012/100.

We don’t know what year Lel wrote her request, but it was when she was a little girl in the 1910s.  She addressed it to Father Christmas at the D.I.C., or to give it its complete mouthful of a name, the Drapery and General Importing Company of New Zealand Limited. Her own great-grandfather, Bendix Hallenstein, established the business some thirty years or so before.

The Dunedin department store was a logical place to send a message to the jolly red-suited man. From 1902 children could visit him every afternoon before Christmas, and in the 1910s the company advertised: ‘Father Christmas is at Home at the D.I.C.’. In 1917, the store advertised ’20 big busy departments full of Xmas gifts’, and a Toyland for Children. It invited parents to bring their children to see Father Christmas in his quaint old chimney corner. Admission was sixpence and children were given a present. Seventy years later children still visited the D.I.C. to see Santa. Its later attractions included Pixie Town, now on display at Toitū Otago Settlers Museum. The D.I.C.’s Dunedin store closed in 1991, after the company was taken over by Arthur Barnett.

Advertisement from the Otago Daily Times, 15 December 1917 p.2. Papers Past, National Library of New Zealand: https://goo.gl/nCBBvo.

Lel asked Father Christmas for a popular and particularly beautiful children’s book, The Sun’s Babies by Edith Howes. Even at a young age the Braschs were supporting New Zealand writers! Born in London in 1872, Howes came to New Zealand with her family when still an infant, and became known as a teacher, writer, and educationalist. She lived in a variety of places around the country, including Ashburton, Wanganui, Makarewa, Gore, Wellington, and Christchurch. In later life she lived in Dunedin, where she died in 1954.

The Sun’s Babies, published in 1910, is set in a mythical fairy world. It includes stories and poems about plants, animals and fairies in the different seasons of the year, incorporating life lessons. The first of Howes’s children’s books, it met with both critical acclaim and popular success. Hocken holds three editions of the book, including Cassell & Co’s original 1910 edition and the 1913 edition shown here. The illustrations are by the English artist Frank Watkins (1863-1929).

Howes, Edith. The Sun’s Babies. London: Cassell and Company, 1913. Hocken Publications, Bliss YO How.s.

Illustration by Frank Watkins from The Sun’s Babies. The caption reads: ‘When she saw Tinyboy she hid her face shyly in her curls’.

Did Lesley get her book and doll? We don’t know but like to think so. Perhaps the answer awaits discovery in the Brasch papers,

There are thousands of postcards in the papers and they are less studied than many other parts of the collection. This particular card can be found in the item: ‘Envelope labelled “Loose postcards” including postcards from family and de Beer, Fels, Hallenstein and Brasch families’ (Charles Brasch papers, Hocken Archives, Uare Taoka o Hākena, MS-0996-012/521).

Merry Christmas from the Hocken Collections.

 

‘You guys play like a punk band’: The Graeme Downes collection of live Verlaines performances

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017 | David Murray | 2 Comments

Post researched and written by Amanda Mills, Curator Music and Audiovisual Collections

The Verlaines have been a keystone band in the Dunedin music scene since their inception in 1980, and fully-fledged beginnings in 1981, when they were found regularly playing gigs in Dunedin’s Empire Tavern’s third floor concert venue. The band has undergone a number of lineup changes over nearly four decades, but the members pivot around songwriter and vocalist/guitarist Dr Graeme Downes, who has been the constant band member since the beginning. The first 15 years of The Verlaines in particular was a productive time for the band, when their sound was developing, and they released some of their most well-known recordings: the songs Death and the Maiden, Crisis after Crisis, and Pyromaniac and albums ‘Hallelujah all the way home’, ‘Bird Dog’, ‘Some Disenchanted Evening’, and ‘Ready to Fly’.

This particularly fertile time is documented in a collection of 33 performances on cassette tapes that Graeme Downes has deposited with Hocken’s music collections. The performances date back to 1981 with a cassette titled ‘Live at Duke Street’ and continue throughout the 1980s, capturing the band in the first decade of their career in exotic locales such as CBGB’s Nightclub in New York, and (arguably) less glamorous settings like Wagga Wagga in New South Wales. This collection of performances documents the band as they develop as performers, and Downes, as he develops as a vocalist and songwriter, imbuing his songs with increasingly sophisticated and complex structures and ‘musical tricks’ – no doubt reflecting his own study in classical music at the University of Otago. The live performances also capture the changing line-ups of The Verlaines, whose sound modifies slightly with each iteration of the band. The earliest cassettes document the initial line-ups (possibly with Downes, Anita Pillai on keys, Craig Easton on guitars and vocals, Philip Higham on bass, and either Paul Baird, Tim James, or Greg Cairns on drums). The band give it their all, and finding their way around Downes’ material which includes later Verlaines classics such as Slow Sad Love Song (the first song Downes ever wrote in 1980 as a response to a friend’s passing), and a faithful cover of Velvet Underground’s Femme Fatale – one of the interesting oddities on the 1981 ‘Rehersals’ tape. By 1985-7, the line-up is one of the most well-known (Downes, Jane Dodd on bass, and Robbie Yeats on drums), and they have just released ‘Hallelujah all the way home’, and ‘Bird Dog’ to excellent press. They are hitting their stride in the live setting, and it shows.

 The Verlaines, It was Raining. Live at The Playroom, Christchurch, May 1987.

 

There are many highlights in this collection. One favourite performance is the band’s spirited take of Pyromaniac at Reckless Records in Chicago (date not recorded, but likely in the early 1990s). There is a punkish spontaneity to this entire show, and Downes’ vocals are spot-on, as is the band’s performance.) Another is possibly the only recorded instance of Graeme Downes performing with Straitjacket Fits, singing She Speeds at Chippendale House in July 1987 (Shayne Carter returns the favour by performing  The Verlaines’ You Cheat Yourself of Everything that Moves) before the Verlaines set for the evening. This is a particularly emotive performance, as it was Downes’ wedding reception! Yet another highlight is a Christmas 1990 show at the Savoy in Dunedin, where the show ends with a dynamic version of Lying in State, which was a popular show closer for the band. By this time the line-up had changed again: Jane Dodd and Robbie Yeats had departed, with replacements Steve Cournane (drums), and Mike Stoodley (bass) taking over their roles in the band – bringing a slightly different feel to the music. The collection stops around 1993, at a point when The Verlaines (now Downes, Darren Steadman on drums, Paul Winders on guitar and backing vocals, and Mike Stoodley on bass) are no longer with Flying Nun, but have signed to Slash Records, an LA-based independent record label. One of the later recordings of the band is an interview with KALX Radio in Berkeley (part of the University of California), where they discuss their (then) new album, ‘Way out Where’, and the band’s history so far. The interviewer discusses Downes’ songwriting, and compares his writing style to Cole Porter or George Gershwin, while stating that The Verlaines ‘play like a punk band most of the time,’ a statement that still applies to the band today.

The physical cassettes are still in good condition for items of between 30 and 40 years old, although the materials are ageing. They are kept in a temperature-controlled vault at Hocken Collections to mitigate any potential issues with magnetic formats (such as sticky shed syndrome). All of these recordings have been digitised to WAV files for access, as the age and fragility of the cassette tapes means further playback could damage them. For any access to this content, please contact the Music and Audiovisual Curator at Hocken Collections for further information.

IT WAS TWENTY YEARS AGO TODAY…Commemorating the Ngāi Tahu Treaty settlement

Monday, November 20th, 2017 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Post researched and written by Scott Campbell, Collections Assistant

Otago Daily Times, 22 November 1997, p3. “Ngai Tahu claims manager Anake Goodall points out the dotted line to Ngai Tahu chief negotiator Sir Tipene O’Regan, while Prime Minister Jim Bolger looks on. Minister in charge of Treaty of Waitangi negotiations Doug Graham adds his signature beside them.” The event happened at Kaikōura

On 21 November 1997, representatives of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the Crown gathered at Takahanga Marae in Kaikōura to sign the Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement. A copy of the Deed of Settlement occupies a good foot of shelf space in the Hocken’s publications stack. What was it all about? Why is the settlement significant? How can one learn more about it?

The signing of the Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement marked a milestone in the evolution of the relationship between Ngāi Tahu[1] and the Crown. For many years the Crown, in its relationship with Ngāi Tahu, had failed to uphold the standards required of a partner to the Treaty of Waitangi. Finally, as its representatives inked their names on the Deed, the Crown was making a commitment to doing something to make up for that.

Today is a day for New Zealanders to acknowledge Ngāi Tahu whānui past, present and future. The anniversary of the signing of the Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement provides an opportunity to remember the painful past, to pay tribute to the hard work and sacrifices made by generations of Ngāi Tahu to reach a settlement, and to celebrate the successes of Ngāi Tahu over the last 20 years. And even though the historical Treaty claims of Ngāi Tahu have been settled, the Treaty partnership and the responsibilities that go with it remain as important today as ever. Through reflection on the past, this anniversary also provides us with an opportunity to think about the mahi we can do to continue strengthening the Treaty partnership over the next twenty year period and beyond.

The Ngāi Tahu Treaty settlement – what is it, and why is it significant?

The signing of the Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement concluded negotiations between Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the Crown for the settlement of all Ngāi Tahu historical Treaty of Waitangi claims. The Ngāi Tahu claims against the Crown – known as Te Kerēme to Ngāi Tahu whānui – spanned a time period reaching all the way back to the 1840s. Te Kerēme concerned the devastating cultural, economic and environmental impacts that stemmed from the Crown’s purchasing of almost all of the land held by Ngāi Tahu whānui prior to 1840 – some 34.5 million acres, covering much of the South Island – without honouring the promises it made to Ngāi Tahu when negotiating the purchases.

The Deed of Settlement recorded the agreements made between the Crown and Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu during settlement negotiations. As part of the settlement, the Crown would make a formal apology to Ngāi Tahu whānui for its historical actions that breached the Treaty of Waitangi and its principles. The text of the Crown’s apology, recorded in the Deed in te reo Māori and English, acknowledged that the Crown “acted unconscionably and in repeated breach of the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi in its dealings with Ngāi Tahu in the purchases of Ngāi Tahu land.” The apology text went on to express the Crown’s profound regret and unreserved apology “to all members of Ngāi Tahu Whānui for the suffering and hardship caused to Ngāi Tahu, and for the harmful effects which resulted to the welfare, economy and development of Ngāi Tahu as a tribe.”[2]

The Deed of Settlement also detailed a redress package that the Crown agreed to provide to Ngāi Tahu “in recognition of the mana of Ngāi Tahu and to discharge the Crown’s obligations to Ngāi Tahu in respect of the Ngāi Tahu Claims.” [3] The package, valued at $170 million, included transfer of Crown properties and forestry assets to Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, vesting of significant sites in Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, and provisions relating to mahinga kai. As part of the settlement, the Crown recognised the original name of New Zealand’s highest mountain, agreed to officially rename it Aoraki/Mount Cook, and agreed to return Aoraki maunga to Ngāi Tahu. Ngāi Tahu would then gift the maunga to the people of New Zealand while retaining an active and ongoing role in the management of the area.[4]

On 29 September 1998, the New Zealand Parliament passed the Ngāi Tahu Claims Settlement Act 1998. The Act enshrined in law the agreements recorded in the Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement and activated the settlement redress package. On 29 November 1998, Prime Minister Jenny Shipley delivered the Crown apology to Ngāi Tahu gathered at Ōnuku Marae on Banks Peninsula.

More than a decade earlier, Tipene O’Regan had addressed the Waitangi Tribunal on the traditional history and identity of Ngāi Tahu whānui. For generations of Ngāi Tahu, colonisation had more or less wiped their iwi off the map and out of the consciousness of most New Zealanders. Ngāi Tahu had suffered a perception that they were, in O’Regan’s words, “something less than Maori, as culturally impoverished.”[5] Amongst other things, the Ngāi Tahu settlement is significant for its contribution to turning that perception around.

After the settlement was finalised, Ngāi Tahu – in the words of some commentators – was “the whale that awoke”.[6] Today Ngāi Tahu are well-known as tangata whenua across most of Te Waipounamu. Ngāi Tahu institutions are strong, the iwi is empowered to exercise its kaitiaki responsibilities over the natural environment in a variety of ways, and Ngāi Tahutanga is flourishing. Ngāi Tahu commercial activities in farming, property, seafood and tourism are also booming. Last week Ngāi Tahu announced a net profit of $126.8 million for the year ending June 2017, and iwi Kaiwhakahaere Lisa Tumahai told Radio New Zealand that the iwi’s net worth had reached $1.36 billion.[7]

As well as the significances for Ngāi Tahu whānui, the Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement has served as an influential model for subsequent Treaty settlements. Following on from the Ngāi Tahu Deed and several other major agreements signed in the 1990s (the largest being the 1992 Fisheries Settlement and 1995 Waikato Raupatu Settlement), individual iwi and the Crown have completed a steadily increasing number of deals in the twenty-first century. As at 17 August 2017, the Crown had signed 85 deeds of settlement with different iwi.[8]

Understanding the Ngāi Tahu claims and settlement

The Ngāi Tahu Deed of Settlement was the product of lengthy direct negotiations between Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the Crown. But the history of Te Kerēme is much much longer. Here at the Hocken Collections we are privileged to care for a wealth of material that illuminates Ngāi Tahu history and culture. Through He Kī Taurangi, the Memorandum of Understanding between Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the University of Otago, we maintain a special relationship with Ngāi Tahu. For an overview of Ngāi Tahu material at the Hocken you can download our reference guide to Kāi Tahu Sources at the Hocken Collections. The collections contain many sources that can help us to understand Te Kerēme and its history, to understand the settlement itself, and to contextualise and critique the settlement.

Jumping straight to the more recent history of Te Kerēme, it is important to understand that the settlement negotiations followed an extensive period of Waitangi Tribunal inquiries into Ngāi Tahu grievances. The Waitangi Tribunal began investigating Te Kerēme in the late-1980s and presented its findings and recommendations in several substantial reports published in the early-1990s.

A selection of resources on the Ngāi Tahu settlement at the Hocken Collections

In addition to the Waitangi Tribunal’s published reports, the Hocken holds two large archival collections of evidence presented to the Tribunal by the Ngāi Tahu Māori Trust Board and the Crown. With a combined total of more than 700 items, these are rich collections.  As well as legal submissions they contain whakapapa, traditional histories, maps, plans and research reports on a wide variety of topics. Did you know the Crown promised to reserve land for Ngāi Tahu on Princes Street as a place to land waka? What ever happened to that? Only one way to find out…

Hocken’s published collections contain the Tribunal’s reports, the Deed of Settlement, and further items that provide insights into the settlement negotiations and the significance of the settlement itself. In addition to government briefings, iwi consultation documents and other publications directly related to the settlement negotiations, we hold many books, theses, journals and newspapers that address and analyse the Ngāi Tahu settlement and the wider processes of claims inquiries and negotiated settlements. “Are Treaty of Waitangi settlements achieving justice?” you might be asking yourself. If so, you will be glad to know that we hold a PhD thesis with a particular focus on the Ngāi Tahu settlement that addresses that very question.

Hocken’s collection of New Zealand election ephemera is another important resource for researchers seeking to understand the ways in which Treaty of Waitangi claims and settlements were represented in the wider political discussion at the time of the Ngāi Tahu settlement. Hocken Collections Assistants recently completed a project to list all items in the Hocken election ephemera collection, a collection that encompasses electioneering material dating from the beginning of the twentieth century right up to the present. The project team was struck by the frequency with which Treaty of Waitangi issues featured in electioneering material received from a broad range of candidates and parties, particularly from the 1996 and 1999 general elections. These items help paint a picture of both the importance and the controversy that was attached to deals like the Ngāi Tahu settlement at a time when Treaty settlements were a new frontier in the New Zealand political landscape.

Want to learn more? Come in and see us at the Hocken Collections. We are open Monday to Saturday, from 10am to 5pm.

For those of you that cannot visit the Hocken Collections in person, you can learn a little more about Te Kerēme and the Ngāi Tahu Treaty settlement by visiting these websites:

For more information about historical Treaty of Waitangi claims and Treaty of Waitangi settlements, check out the websites of the Waitangi Tribunal and the Office of Treaty Settlements.

[1] “Ngāi Tahu” is used in this post for consistency with the iwi name used in the documents generated by the Waitangi Tribunal and Treaty settlement processes. However, “Kāi Tahu” is commonly used in the regions south of the Waitaki River.

[2] You can read the full text of the Crown’s apology to Ngāi Tahu (as it appeared in the Ngāi Tahu Claims Settlement Act 1998) in te reo Māori here, and in English here.

[3] Parties Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and Her Majesty the Queen in right of New Zealand: Deed of Settlement, (Wellington: Office of the Minister in Charge of Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations, 1997), section 2.3.1.

[4] “Aoraki,” Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu website: http://ngaitahu.iwi.nz/ngai-tahu/the-settlement/settlement-offer/aoraki/ (accessed 20 November 2017).

[5] “Brief of evidence: Tipene O’Regan: Ka korero o mua o Kaitahu whanui,” (Wai 27, #A27).

[6] Ann Parsonson, “Ngāi Tahu – The Whale That Awoke: From Claim to Settlement (1960-1998),” in John Cookson and Graeme Dunstall (eds), Southern Capital – Christchurch – Towards a City Biography 1850-2000, (Christchurch: Canterbury University Press, 2000), p. 272.

[7] “Ngāi Tahu announces $1.26m annual profit,” Radio New Zealand website, 15 November 2017: https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/te-manu-korihi/343912/ngai-tahu-announces-126-point-8m-annual-profit (accessed 17 November 2017).

[8] “Deed of Settlement signed with Ngāti Hei,” Beehive.govt.nz website, 17 August 2017: https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/deed-settlement-signed-ng%C4%81ti-hei (accessed 17 November 2017).

 

A Fireside Family Favourite

Sunday, October 1st, 2017 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Blog post researched and written by Emma Scott, Hocken Collections Assistant.

V.1:no.1 (1898:January 1) page 1

Two weeks ago we were kindly donated “The Home Circle: an Instructive & Entertaining Magazine for the Family  & Fireside”. This was the first time any of the Publications Collections Assistants had seen this particular periodical before, so it was a very special discovery.

The Home Circle was published fortnightly in Oamaru and distributed throughout the Oamaru district. The first issue was published on January 1st 1898 and included an introduction explaining that the purpose of The Home Circle was to “help foster the home life” of it’s readers as they are “convinced that the home is the seat of national strength and vitality”. The Home Circle contains “articles on Social Questions, a Column for the Ladies, a Children’s Page, “Quaint Talks” by John Blunt, Short Stories (original and selected), Records of Local Doing, Notes and Comments on matters of passing interest”. The magazine was distributed gratis for the first three months it was published in the hope that readers would be interested enough to subscribe to it at the end of March. The publication must have continued, as we hold v.1:no.1 (1898:January 1) to v.2:no.8 (1899:April 27).

The “Ladies’ Column” features such topics as; personal appearance: “the untidy member of the family who utterly disregards her personal appearance is a great trial to her friends” (v.1:no.1 1898 January 1, page 8), how to keep children away from home: “when the children run in from outdoor play on little errands of their own, don’t fail to seize on any possible excuse for detaining them in the house” (v.1:no.20 1898 November 3, page 236), unattractive homes: “One often sees a man coming home tired and depressed from his day’s work, hoping to find a little comfort and cheering at home… When he is greeted instead with a dirty house and a cold hearth, or when a sudden fit of tidiness had prompted his wife to begin to scrub out rooms late in the afternoon, then he may feel strongly tempted to put on his hat again and take the shortest cut to the public-house” (v.2:no.6 1899 March 30, page 68) and what men like in women: “they like women whose lives and faces are always full of the sunshine of a contented mind and a cheerful disposition” (v.2:no.3 1899 February 9, page 32).

V.1:no.20 (1898:November 3) page 236

“Quaint talks by John Blunt” is another regular column with the subtitle: “A plain blunt man, I only speak right on; I tell you that which you yourselves do know”. John Blunt is a “straight forward sort of chap” who “calls a spade a spade”. Some of his musings include: “I would not give a fig for a man who is not punctual to his engagements, and who never makes up his mind to a certain course till the opportunity is lost. Those who hang back, hesitate, and tremble, – who never are on hand for a journey, a trade, a sweetheart, or anything else are poor sloths” (v.1:no.7 1898 April 28, page 79).

The “Bits of Humour” section on the back page includes jokes very reminiscent of the jokes contained in Christmas crackers, and just like on Christmas day, you can easily picture a family reading them out at the dinner table. One part of the humour column which caught my eye is called “An Interesting Love-Letter”, see attached image:

V.1:no.9 (1898:May 26) page 108

Local news and advertisements are scattered throughout the journal, including advertisements for W M’Donald on Exe Street (for dyes and woollen wearing apparel), B Mollison & Co. on Thames St (for boots and shoes), C. Martin on Thames St (photographer) and J.H. Cunningham on Tyne Street (for plain and ornamental printing).

 V.1:no.1 (1898 January 1) page 12

If you are interested in looking at the Home Circle or any of our other fascinating publications, archives or pictorial collections come along to the Hocken Collections! We are open from 10am to 5pm Monday to Saturday.

The APRA Silver Scroll collection

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Post written by Amanda Mills, Hocken Liaison Librarian, Curator Music and AV

September is the month of the APRA (Australasian Performing Rights Association) Silver Scroll Awards, an event celebrating New Zealand songwriters and composers. A number of awards are presented during this ceremony: the prestigious Silver Scroll award, recognising “outstanding achievement in the craft of songwriting,” the SOUNZ contemporary award recognising “creativity and inspiration in composition by a New Zealander,” and the APRA Maioha Award which “celebrates excellence in popular Māori composition, to inspire Māori composers to explore and express their culture and to increase awareness of waiata in te reo Māori throughout Aotearoa.” Also presented are the APRA Screen Music Awards – the APRA Best Original Music in a Feature Film and APRA Best Original Music in a Series Award, both of which celebrate New Zealand’s screen composers.

In 2017, the APRA Silver Scroll Awards are being held in Dunedin on September 28th – a first for the city – and it is shaping up to be a Dunedin-centric awards ceremony. According to the APRA website, Dunedin has more songwriters per capita than anywhere else in New Zealand, and this year Port-Chalmers based singer-songwriter Nadia Reid, is nominated for her song ‘Richard’. As the Silver Scroll Award itself is to celebrate songwriting, the nominated songs are performed not by their writers and composers, but by other musicians in a different style to illustrate how a song stands on its own merits, regardless of genre. A musical curator selects the artists to perform the tracks, and for the 2017 Awards, Dunedin’s own Shayne Carter (DoubleHappys, Straitjacket Fits, Dimmer) will be undertaking this role. Another link between the awards and our Southern city are the 2017 inductees to the NZ Hall of Fame: The Clean (including founding member Peter Gutteridge), whose contribution to local music history can never be understated.

Hocken’s own music collections have a connection to the Silver Scroll Awards – 190 45rpm discs of Silver Scroll nominated (and winning) songs from between 1965 and 1976 were donated in 1977. These songs represent the eclectic nature of songwriting from the time, with tracks from Blerta, The Maori Volcanics, John Hanlon, Steve Allen, Rockinghorse, Shona Laing, Ray Columbus, The Fourmyula, and Maria Dallas included in the nominations, along with Jay Epae, Lutha, The Moving Folk, (the wonderfully named) The Village Gossip  and Garner Wayne and his Saddle Pals. Accompanying lists of the nominated songs (also provided from APRA) give an indication of how many songs were nominated each year, and are a great resource for researchers looking at New Zealand popular music of the mid twentieth century.  Our wider music collections also include Silver Scroll nominated material from this period and later on 45rpm disc, CD and cassette, including Lea Maalfrid’s 1977 winning song ‘Lavender Mountain’ – the first Silver Scroll Award ever presented to a female songwriter. However, the core APRA collection brings together these nominated songs as a group to represent a time capsule of material nominated for the Silver Scroll.

The song digitised here is by The Blue Stars (later The Bluestars), an Auckland group that began in the early 1960s during the band members’ time at Auckland Grammar. In 1966, they released ‘Please Be A Little Kind’ b/w ‘I Can Take It,’ a record that charted at no. 12, and gained radio airplay. The Blue Stars disbanded the following year, but ‘Please Be A Little Kind’ has kept the band firmly in New Zealand music history due to the song’s nomination for a Silver Scroll.

Below is the 1965 list of Silver Scroll nominees, which features some familiar names like Garner Wayne, Peter Posa, and Ray Colombus – names that reappear frequently in the nomination lists, and in the music charts.

Good luck to all this year’s award nominees!

Amanda Mills

References:

APRA Mohoia Award http://apraamcos.co.nz/awards/awards/silver-scroll-awards/apra-maioha-award/

APRA Silver Scroll Award http://apraamcos.co.nz/awards/awards/silver-scroll-awards/apra-silver-scroll/

SOUNZ Contemporary Award http://apraamcos.co.nz/awards/awards/silver-scroll-awards/

 

 

 

 
Anna Blackman anna.blackman@otago.ac.nz
 

Any views or opinion represented in this site belong solely to the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the University of Otago. Any view or opinion represented in the comments are personal and are those of the respective commentator/contributor to this site.