Post researched and written by Emma Scott, Collections Assistant – Publications
Are you a machine knitter, cat fancier, Ruritanian folk dancer, Chrysler restorer, lace maker, ship wreck welfare specialist or antique bottle collector? If so, then you will be interested in some of the approximately 3145 club and society periodicals located in the Hocken Journals collection. We hold many different types of publications produced by clubs and societies including; meeting minutes, newsletters, rule books, annual reports and accounts. These periodicals come from all over New Zealand, the Pacific and Antarctica and cover a broad range of topics.
Similar to the zines in our journals collection, some of these periodicals are handwritten or were typed using a typewriter and many of the illustrations within them were created by club or society members. They can vary in size and are often missing date information which means that our Collection Assistants sometimes have to read through the entirety of the periodical to try and determine the date of each issue.
The content of the newsletters can provide the reader with a wealth of information about club issues and what activities the club is involved in, for example; in Tabletalk (the Otago Bridge Club newsletter) for 1979 May 10, the editor reminds the bridge players to stop post-morteming their game when moving to a new table and to acknowledge other bridge players as there has been an “epidemic of rudeness” in the club recently, and tucked away within the Joint Newsletter for the Central Otago Farm Forestry and Tree Crops Association there is a multi choice form that was used when a member found a good hazelnut or walnut tree. Upon discovery of the tree they were to provide the branch registrar with a 2kg sample of nuts and indicate on the form what percentage of nuts fall free of husks, how many kilograms of nuts the tree produces annually and what evidence of lemon stem borer, bug mites or mineral deficiency they had found on the tree. The nuts were also observed by the registrar, with the registrar recording their observations of the nut’s shell colour, blemishes, shape, size, thickness and kernal details on the other side of the form.
These club and society periodicals were often used to further educate members about their topic of interest, this is evident in the herb society newsletters which contain recipes using the herb of choice for that newsletter as well as informative articles about the chosen herb. Issue 154 (2009:Autumn) of “The Bay Tree” (the Kapiti Herb Society Newsletter) focuses on Lemon Verbena with tips on cultivation and recipes for Lemon Verbena liqueur and syrup which the newsletter states can be used with ice cream, pound cake or other light desserts. We have a strong collection of herb society newsletters, which includes the following titles: Thyme Out (Upper Clutha), Bouquet of Herbs (Auckland), The Sage (Waihi), Chamomile (Wairarapa), Herbs a Plenty (Tauranga) and Simple Pleasures (Otago).
Running a club or society is a labour of love as it is often time consuming and costly. For this reason, we are receiving less and less club and society publications. We are also contacted regularly by groups who have decided to produce their publications in an electronic format instead of print due to the cost of producing and distributing their publications to members.
This collection demonstrates that for any hobby or interest you may have, no matter how specialised, you will be able to find other like minded individuals that are just as passionate as you are. If you are involved in a club or society, please think of the Hocken Collections as a place to donate your publications to as we would love to continue adding material to this incredible collection.
Central Otago Farm Forestry Association and Central Otago Tree Crops Association. (1984) Joint newsletter.
Kapiti Herb Society. (2009). The bay tree: Kapiti Herb Society Newsletter, (154), 5-8.
Otago Bridge Club. (1979). Tabletalk, (8), 1.
Titles featured in the top image:
The New Zealand Society of Dowsing & Radionics – v.32:no.3 (2009:Sept.)
Rare Breeds Newz – no.118 (2017:Aug.)
Official Newsletter of the Canterbury Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club Inc. – issue no.4 ([1977:Jan.?])
The sweat-rag (Hill City Dunedin Athletic Club Inc.) – Issue no.4 (2012:Winter)
The Sherlock Holmes Club of Dunedin newsletter – no.1/99 (1999:Sept.)
Norfolk and Pitcairn Islands Friendship Club (N.Z.) Inc [newsletter] – issue no.1 (1994:Feb./Mar.)
Tabletalk (Otago Bridge Club) – no.8 (1979:May10)
NZ Micro: Official Publication of the N.Z. Microcomputer Club Inc. – no.44 (1986:Apr.)
Saints alive!: Official Journal of the Saint Bernard Club Inc. – 1984:Nov.
Ruritanian Roundabout: newsletter of the Ruritanian International Folk Dance Club Inc. and Associated Groups – 2015:May
Newsletter (New Zealand Machine Knitters Society) – v.36:issue 4 (2013:May)
Annual Championship Cat Show / Otago Cat Fanciers’ Club – 1963:June29
Humber torque: monthly magazine of the Humber Car Club of N.Z. incorporating Hillman Car Club of N.Z. – 2017:July/Aug.
Whangarei Deep Sea Anglers’ Club – 1962:Dec.
The Otago Commodore 64 Club Official News letter – 1991:Mar.
The bay tree: Kapiti Herb Society Newsletter – issue 154 (2009:Autumn)
Girl: you look beautiful / WGTN School’s Feminist Club presents… – v.1 ([2015?])