Going for UNESCO Gold – A second Memory of the World Registration for The Hocken Collections!

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

We are very excited to announce that the Hocken Collections has again been successful receiving a Memory of World Registration.

This year it is Dr Thomas Morland Hocken’s collection of Church Missionary Society papers that has been added to the register.

IMG_0968

Some of the collection laid out on furniture from the original Hocken Library reading rooms

We made application this year as part of our programme of work to commemorate 200 years since the mission at Rangihoua in the Bay of Islands was established. Our current exhibition Whakapono : Faith and foundations showcases some of the documents in the collection, and the Marsden online website provides sophisticated tools to search a portion of the documents.

This collection of records acquired by Hocken from the Church Missionary Society in London contains the letters and journals of Rev Samuel Marsden and the settlers who came to New Zealand in 1814 to begin establishing missionary settlements.

The records document the development of the Anglican mission in the Bay of Islands including Marsden’s celebrations of Christmas Day 1814. In describing what they saw and learnt in detail the authors created a rich resource for developing our understanding of New Zealand in the pre-Treaty of Waitangi era. They provide a first-hand account of  Maori world around the Bay of Islands; describing people, places, events, conversations, battles and gatherings, who was important and why, relationships between local iwi and hapu, Maori cultural practices, rituals, religion and arts, Maori horticulture, fishing and foods, and the land and sea, forests and lakes.

The writers also describe their work introducing European agriculture, new plants and animals, teaching reading and writing, how they learnt Te Reo Maori, the development of early Maori orthography and also their own tiny community’s internal strife, failures and successes as they struggled to live together in a foreign and isolated place.

The documents are written by a variety of people principally Samuel Marsden, Thomas Kendall, William Hall, John King, John Butler, Reverend Henry Williams, James Kemp, Richard Davis, George Clarke, James Hamlin, William Colenso and the CMS officials in London.

JPG_Image-MS_0054_087_003

Part of a letter from Reverend Samuel Marsden to the Church Missionary Society in London with list of items sent to the Society. The list includes items of Maori clothing such as fine cloaks. MS-0054/087

From the early 1800s Maori were beginning to explore the wider European world. They were intensely curious about European technologies, literacy, religion and trade.  Seeing the potential benefits these could bring to their people Nga Puhi leaders Te Pahi, Ruatara and Hongi Hika used their relationship with Samuel Marsden to encourage him to send teachers, agriculturalists and artisans to New Zealand.

The records registered are MS-0053, MS-0054, MS-0055, MS-0056, MS-0057, MS-0058, MS-0060, MS-0061, MS-0062, MS-0063, MS-0064, MS-0065, MS-0066, MS-0067, MS-0068, MS-0069, MS-0070, MS-0071, MS-0072, MS-0073, MS-0176/001, MS-0176/002, MS-0176/003, MS-0176/004, MS-0176/005, MS-0177/001, MS-0177/002, MS-0177/003, MS-0177/004, MS-0498.

Hocken was an active collector of publications and archival material documenting New Zealand’s history and culture. He was particularly interested in the early mission period. These records were primarily acquired by Dr Hocken directly from the Church Missionary Society in London in late 1903. Whilst initially reluctant to part with the records the CMS eventually agreed that they should be returned to New Zealand. Hocken later sent £250 to the Society. Hocken also acquired some of the documents in the collection from descendants of the missionaries.

Dr Hocken’s collection was transferred to the University of Otago in 1907 under a Deed of Trust that established the Hocken Collections.

Further additions of complementary Church Missionary Society records have been made by donation and purchase, notably the purchase from D.K. Webster of London in 1967 of the papers comprising MS-0498.

 

Missing; stolen; drunk: perusing the Police Gazettes

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Post prepared by Kari Wilson-Allan, Library Assistant (Reference)

To open a volume of The Otago Police Gazette is to enter into a colourful world that warrants investigation.  What follows is a series of observations based on issues from the early and mid-1870s.

The Gazette served as a key communication tool for the police force between stations and regions.  Without photography or modern electronic communications, police work would have been very different in the late nineteenth century to how it is today.  Nonetheless, their reliance on the circulation of written material is part of what makes for such a fascinating document now.

Willisford 15 May 1877 p.62

15 May 1877, p. 62.

The mug shot was not yet employed as a means of recording appearance.  Consequently, vivid textual description is used, often offering more information than what a photograph could ever provide.   For instance, a group of wanted felons were described variously in the 30 November 1872 issue: Thomas Sheehan had a “dirty sulky appearance, [and] speaks with a broad Irish accent;” William Walsh “always keeps his mouth open;”  James Cummins was of a “coarse Yankee appearance,” and Thomas Howe had “thin features, Roman nose, smart appearance, [and was] fond of horse-racing.”

McLennan 31 Aug 1874 p. 70

31 Aug 1874 p. 70

Edward Chaplin was described in the 30 September 1871 issue as “a clerk and mining agent, below the middle height, broad shoulders, stooped and awkward gait, fresh complexion, grey hair, grey prominent eyes – occasionally bloodshot – very short sighted, Jewish appearance; he usually keeps his hands in his trousers pockets and looks on the ground when walking; he was dressed in a black sac coat, dark grey overcoat, dark striped trousers, and black silk hat; addicted to drink.”

Throughout the yellowed pages, charges for larceny, lunacy, vagrancy, disorderly conduct and habitual drunkenness abound.  Other cases illuminate societal concerns: “furious riding” and “sly grog-selling” were both frowned upon, as was “occupying a house frequented by reputed thieves.”

Apprehensions 30 April 1874, p. 33

Apprehensions list 30 April 1874, p. 33

Anxiety for the wellbeing of citizens is also apparent, with men charged for deserting their wives and for failing to support their mothers.  Children, too, could find themselves arrested for “being neglected,” or for “being a criminal child;” the usual outcome of this was a sentence of some years at the Industrial School.  Women tended to attract charges of vagrancy and drunkenness, whereas men were the usual perpetrators of a wider range of offences.  Serious and violent transgressions also arose, among them assault with intent to commit rape, attempted suicide and murder.

Brody 31 Dec 1873 p.80

31 Dec 1873 p.80

Māori appear infrequently over the period surveyed, but Chinese names are occasionally interspersed amongst those of British and European origin, both as perpetrators and as victims of crimes.

Ah Yeu 10 Jan 1876 p.3

10 January 1876, p. 3.

Wehi 2 Oct 1876 p.96

2 October 1876, p. 96.

The pages are filled with reports of items stolen (watches, horses and money dominate), warrants issued, and inquest findings.  Lost and found property is recorded, as are “missing friends” such as Edward Chaplin described above.  Offenders apprehended are listed alongside their punishments, and further tables record those arrested, tried, and discharged from prison during the past weeks.  Descriptions of former prisoners are provided, with notes made of any distinctive features such as tattoos or physical abnormalities.

Return of prisoners 10 May 1876, p. 51

10 May 1876, p. 51

Submissions to the Gazette range from the mundane through to the grim and distressing.  Some cases appear trite or even comical to the modern eye.  Yet, on reflection, they show us the anxieties, concerns, and troubles of those living in the earlier days of our province.

Moir 31 Dec 1873 p. 80

31 December 1873, p. 80.

Every entry in the Gazette hints at a richer story on the part of both victim and perpetrator.  I can’t help but wonder at the implications and outcomes of certain cases, and if those with missing friends were ever reunited.

Verchere 15 Dec 1876, p.125

15 December 1876, p. 125.

 

 

Hocken Snapshop now feeding into Digital NZ

Monday, May 12th, 2014 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

We are very pleased to announce that the Hocken Snapshop database of around 30,000 images of our photographic collections is now feeding into Digital NZ. This provides different functionality than Snapshop, and allows you to search for Hocken images along with 27 million other digital items from across NZ. You can search across all 27 million at once or narrow your search using the filters system on the site.

Thanks to the Digital NZ staff and also to NZ Micrographics, who designed and support the Recollect database that we use for Snapshop.

Check out Digital NZ from this link http://digitalnz.org.nz/

 

 

 

 

Some sources for southern Maori dialect

Thursday, July 7th, 2011 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

As this week is Te Wiki o Te Reo Maori a post on Te Reo in the south is timely. The Hocken Collections is privileged to care for several taoka (treasures) documenting the unique words heard in various parts of the South Island.

James Watkin’s small notebook includes word lists he compiled as he struggled with learning the language at Waikouaiti in 1840. He was already fluent in Tongan and had studied texts supplied to him that had been written in the North Island and was disappointed to find how difficult he found it to understand the language spoken in the South Island when he arrived on 15 May 1840. By 5 June he had compiled 400 words in the notebook with the assistance of the local chief, Haereroa. The notebook was part of his attempt to make sense of the local dialect and is undoubtedly influenced by his knowledge of Tongan. The original was given to Dr Hocken by a descendent of Watkin and photocopies are available for research use.

As a result of Watkin’s struggles with the language, he compiled He Puka Ako I Te Korero Maori which was printed at the Wesleyan Mission at Mangungu in 1841. Surviving copies of this publication are extremely rare, of the 3000 printed we know there is one in the Alexander Turnbull Library in Wellington and one in the National Library of Australia in Canberra. Hocken holds photocopies only, butiIf anyone knows of other original copies of the booklet we would love to know! In 1994 Ray Harlow and Otago Heritage Books published an extremely useful facsimile of He Puka Ako I Te Korero Maori, and this is more widely distributed in libraries. Harlow’s little book also includes discussion and translation of the features of the language documented in Watkin’s booklet.


James Watkin’s word list (MS-0031) and Ray Harlow’s book reproducing He Puka Ako I Te Korero Maori

Ray Harlow has also published a more extensive book, A Word List of South Island Maori, which draws on wider sources to create an annotated list of distinctively southern Maori words. On pages xxiii and xxiv Harlow gives a list of sources for southern dialect words including:

The journal of John Boultbee

Boultbee was a young man who spent much time with sealing crews in and around Fiordland and Foveaux Strait in 1826-1828. Hocken holds a microfilm copy of the original manuscript (held at the Alexander Turnbull Library) but most readers may find the published versions more accessible. There is Journal of a rambler : the journal of John Boultbee, edited by June Starke, and The World of John Boultbee by Drs A.C. Begg and N.C. Begg. Both of these books include transcripts of Boultbee’s vocabulary list. The Beggs note that Boultbee’s phonetic spelling echoes that of George Forster, who recorded the Maori names of the natural history specimens he drew and painted at Dusky Sound in 1773. Probably Forster’s is the first attempt to phonetically record southern Maori words.

Edward Shortland’s journal of his trip through the South Island in 1840

This was published as –The Southern Districts of New Zealand : a Journal, with Passing Notices of the Customs of the Aborigines – and is available online from the NZ Electronic Text Centre, as well as in many libraries. This includes a vocabulary of the “Kaitahu” dialect starting on page 305. The original journals were acquired by Dr Hocken and photocopies are available for research at the Hocken.

Octavius Harwood’s papers

These include two items of interest. Firstly a short letter that appears to be written by “John White” or the chief Karetai, addressed to Te Raki concerning a boat. The letter is undated but Karetai died in 1860. The second interesting item is a list of parts of the body in one of Harwood’s notebooks (MS-0438/005). The list appears after several pages of notes from Kendall’s 1820 grammar and phrase book and features spelling more akin to Boultbee’s than Kendall’s. For example the word for hair – usually “huruhuru” – is spelt “huduhudu”, and that for nails – usually “maikuku” – is spelt “muttacook” giving some indication that the words Harwood was hearing were pronounced differently at Otakou than in the North Island. This notebook dates from 1839-1840.

Karetai’s letter (MS-0438/163)

Octavius Harwood’s list of the names of parts of the body (MS-0438/005)

It is worth noting here that Maori orthography was not completely standardised in the 19th century and varying phonetic spellings were common in written Maori throughout New Zealand.

James Herries Beattie

Beattie’s notebooks contain word lists, place names lists etc. Beattie donated his extensive collection of research papers to the Hocken in several batches during the 1950s, 1960s and in 1972. Beattie collected his information during the 20th century by conducting extensive interviews with many informants, and perhaps documents a different era from the earlier sources. For more information on Beattie’s work see Athol Anderson’s biography in Te Ara – http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/biographies/4b16/1. The Hocken hold copies of Beattie’s publications as well as his papers.

Soldiers diaries and letters

Thursday, April 21st, 2011 | Anna Blackman | 2 Comments

Behind the downstairs reference desk at the Hocken are some shelves where each week’s newly acquired books are kept for staff to familiarise themselves with what is newly published. In the lead up to Anzac Day each year there are often books relating to New Zealand’s experience of war, and in particular the First and Second World Wars. The stand out book on the shelf last week was Glyn Harper’s latest, Letters from Gallipoli : New Zealand Soldiers Write Home. Professor Harper has collected together and edited the letters of many soldiers to tell the story of Gallipoli in a kind of collective first person account.

Letters from Gallipoli includes letters that are held at the Hocken Collections. We are grateful to many Otago soldier’s letters and diaries which have been generously donated by families. We would welcome further donations of soldier’s papers and photographs, not just relating to the First and Second World Wars but all wars that New Zealanders have experienced. These kinds of papers are the primary sources for books such as Professor Harper’s, and they are also regularly used by University of Otago students for their studies. Apart from post-grads researching and writing theses, Professor Tom Brooking’s HIST 105 paper focuses on the ANZAC’s and their legacy, students of this paper make intensive use of some of the soldier’s papers cared for at the Hocken.

A selection of soldiers papers from the Hocken Collections

To hear more about Professor Harper’s research and the book listen to Radio NZ online
2009 interview (half way through research)
2011 interview (project finished)

War is almost certainly the most popular topic for historical research in New Zealand after family history. And so often family history is entertwined with war history. This keen interest is undoubtedly because of New Zealander’s close personal involvement in these wars. Almost every NZ family in the early to mid 20th century had at least one or more family member(s) in the armed forces and even if they didn’t their daily lives were greatly effected by what was happening.

The Hocken Collections is well resourced to meet this interest and has produced a series of subject guides to assist researchers. The guides are available in PDF form from the Guides page of our website. There are five guides covering the NZ Wars 1840s, NZ Wars 1860s-1870s, South African War, World War I and World War II.

Post prepared by Anna Blackman, Curator of Archives and Manuscripts

James Hector and the Geological Mapping of Otago

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

To coincide with “Hector Day” 16 March, we are launching a new online version of a map documenting the geological survey of Otago and Southland carried out by James Hector in the early 1860s. 16 March is Hector’s birthday. Hector is one of New Zealand’s most respected scientists, and after he completed the Otago and Southland survey he went on to head the New Zealand Geological Survey and the Colonial Museum in Wellington.

Link to view Hector map website;
http://www.otago.ac.nz/library/treasures/hector/map.php

The original map hung in the Geology Department Museum for many years and by the the late 1970s there was concern about deterioration of the map, leading to discussions with the Hocken Library about its repair and conservation. It was sent away for restoration with a grant from the Art Galleries and Museums Association of New Zealand, but little documentation has survived. For over 25 years the map was overlooked. Finally, in 2007 it was located in the Auckland Art Gallery, and returned to the Hocken Library.

The University of the Third Age Charitable Trust has generously funded this project to conserve the original map and make the map available to a much wider audience.The original map is now housed safely at the Hocken Library.

The original map is incredibly detailed, to create the digital version the map was scanned at the New Zealand Micrographics Heritage Materials Imaging Facility. Apart from making the map widely available through the website, digitisation enables researchers to examine specific areas of the map in detail without resorting to magnifying glasses.

James Hector c.1879. MS-0445-4/07

The website content was authored by researcher Simon Nathan and designed by the University Library Web Developer, Merrin Brewster. Cleaning, flattening and conservation was carried out by local Conservator, Marion Mertens.

Interesting use of photographs of Cargill’s Castle

Thursday, August 5th, 2010 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

The Otago Daily Times recently published the story of Warren Justice and his scale model of Cargill’s Castle

http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/119111/cargills-castle-model-completed

Warren based his model on historical photographs of the well known landmark (also known as the Cliffs) which he found at the Hocken. While researchers use information from the Hocken for a wide variety of purposes this is probably one of the more unusual. It’s good to hear that the Cargill’s Castle Trust may be able to use the model in its’ work towards the preservation of the Castle.

Doing Well and Doing Good : Ross and Glendining : Scottish Enterprise in New Zealand

Thursday, July 29th, 2010 | Anna Blackman | 3 Comments

The Hocken Collections recently hosted a book launch for the long awaited (by Hocken staff anyway) book by Stephen Jones, Doing Well and Doing Good : Ross and Glendining: Scottish Enterprise in New Zealand, published by OU Press.

Steve has been a regular visitor to the Hocken through several “generations” of archivists and reference desk staff. For many years he made an annual pilgrimage to Dunedin from his Scottish home in Dundee to complete the next phase of research on the records of Ross and Glendining held in the Hocken Collections.  Tips on finding material in the collection and Steve’s interests in Ross and Glendining were passed on from archivist to archivist as it became known that exemplary service could result in a free lunch! Reams of photocopied pages were dispatched to Dundee, but they only seemed to encourage him to travel back to NZ with further questions to be answered by interrogation of the original records!
Business communications from an 1877 Ross and Glendining letterbook, the paper is translucent and thin as tissue and difficult to photocopy from.
We admired his passion for lists of obscurely written financial reports and the analysis of the business data he copied from the records and wondered what the result would be. My own interest in the progress of the project was further stimulated by attending an excellent presentation in the School of Business by Steve on his research findings. The quarterly financial reports had been analysed, the columns of handwritten numbers in pounds shilllings and pence totted up and made meaningful and Steve described the role of Ross and Glendining in the fabric of NZ life. I’m looking forward to reading the book and  reviews are very positive. The Hocken staff are really pleased to see the work finished and published but we will miss Steve and his visits.
A handwritten financial activity report for the six months prior to January 1894 from the Ross and Glendining archives. Stephen read hundreds of pages such as this during his research.

Find out more about what’s at the Hocken – Reference Guides

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Do you want to know more about the wonderful treasures to be found at the Hocken? The Hocken staff have written various reference guides to help researchers locate material in our collections. These are available in hardcopy in the reference area, or as PDFs on our website at http://www.library.otago.ac.nz/hocken/guides.html

As well as a general introduction to the Hocken and a guide to Maori resources, we have two main series of guides: genealogy guides and research guides. The genealogy guides include information on our resources for researching Maori whakapapa; births, deaths and marriages; shipping; education; occupations; and residences. We also have a guide to internet resources, and a guide to the records of Otago and Southland orphanages and children’s homes (some of these sources are held by other institutions).

The series of research guides currently stands at 17 with several new ones appearing each year. These guides are primarily aimed at university students and researchers, but they include information which will also be of interest to many other people. They do not list all our resources, but give examples of items in our collections along with suggestions on how to locate other relevant material. Popular guides in this series include those to war-related material (there are separate guides for World War I, World War II, the South African War and two guides on the New Zealand Wars), missionary sources, religion sources and mining sources. Recent additions to the series are on Pacific Islands sources and tourism sources, and a health sciences reference guide will be out next month.

We hope you find these guides useful, and welcome your feedback!

Post prepared by Ali Clarke, Reference Assistant

We celebrate the addition of the Otago Police Gazettes to the Otago Nominal Index

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010 | Anna Blackman | No Comments

Local members of the Otago branch of the New Zealand Society of Genealogists have recently celebrated the completion of nine years of data entry adding the Otago Police Gazettes to the Otago Nominal Index. The latter was started 21 years ago with the indexing of early local street directories and electoral rolls, all of which is still continuing. The index now contains approximately 400,000 names, and the group is now embarking on indexing the Mackays Otago Almanac.

This is an amazing source for genealogical and historical research. Take a look at it at http://marvin.otago.ac.nz/oni/ where it is hosted by the University of Otago Library.