Joanna Paul (1945-2003), M.G. Hitchings, Hocken Librarian, 1965-84, March 1985, pencil on paper: 422 x 296mm, accession: 85/7, commissioned by the Hocken Library to appear on the cover of the 1984 Annual Report.
The Hocken Library Annual report for 1984 published an appreciation of Michael’s work “RETIREMENT OF MICHAEL HITCHINGS. The retirement of Michael Hitchings on 30 June 1984 as Hocken Librarian marked the end of an era for the Library. His service was noted by the Hocken Library Committee at its meeting on 28 March 1984 in the following terms.
“The Committee notes Mr Hitchings’ decision to retire at the end of June 1984 with regret that he will be leaving the position of Hocken Librarian and gratitude for his achievement in that position since April 1965.
Mr Hitchings contribution has been enhanced by his involvement with the New Zealand Historic Places Trust and similar bodies and by his close association with scholars and creative artists. He is known by these to be a man of principle and of great integrity in the handling of material entrusted to the Library, and the Library has gained from this knowledge. His honours, the MBE, and the Fellowship of the New Zealand Library Association and of the Art Galleries and Museums Association of New Zealand, would have caused no surprise to those who have benefitted from his work.”
Hocken Librarian Sharon Dell reports, “Late in 2009 Michael and his former wife Maureen Lewis donated a collection of almost 115 art works and related hand printed books and catalogues to the Collection. The works reflect their long interest in the creative arts and their close relationships with writers and artists. Stuart Strachan and I had a Christmas lunch with Michael and as I left him my last words were to thank him again for the gift. “You know how much it means to us don’t you?” I said. He looked at me directly and deliberately and said “Yes, I do.”
I left him content that he was aware of our appreciation and the importance of the enduring contribution he has made to Hocken’s collections and research into New Zealand’s creative life.
Hurray for the digital world – two announcements that will make life easier for researchers, one available now and one to come.
The NZ Electronic Text Centre has announced the Journal of the Nelson Historical Society is now available online http://www.nzetc.org/tm/scholarly/tei-corpus-nhsj.html and the Parliamentary Counsel Office is initiating a programme to digitise historical NZ Acts, from 1841 to 2007. Read more at http://www.pco.parliament.govt.nz/digitisation-programme/
Last days to see the Hocken’s current foyer display celebrating our diverse engineering heritage. Photographs, plans, newspaper clippings, diaries and a slideshow of railways-related photographs from the Jim Dangerfield papers, 1966-1976
The 2010 recipient of the Frances Hodgkins Fellowship is Joanna Langford, who moved to Dunedin from Wellington last month to start the year-long Fellowship.
Have you seen our current exhibition yet?
Another new initiative for 2010 is the Hocken Facebook page. Now you can use this popular social networking site to keep up to date with Hocken activities and make new friends.