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November – December 2004
Watermarks from Fabriano
It was a wonderful delight at the latest meeting of the Society, to have George Baird (author of the recent post office reminiscences in the Journal) as a guest speaker. He showed us his delightful collection of intricately watermarked papers he had been given from the paper factory in the town of Fabriano in Italy during World War II. Portraits marked into the paper, visible only by being held up to the light, were a wonder to see – Hitler, Mussolini, Edward VII, artworks such as Madonnna della Sedia by Raphael appeared as George held up his precious collection one by one to the sunlight of a Saturday afternoon streaming through the window. Thank you, George, for a very special and marvellous talk and display. Those of us there won’t forget it.
Parnell Heritage Meeting
Rendell McIntosh of Judges Bay, who has been working on his book on the history of that part of our city called The Art and History of Judges Bay, has been recently involved with the organising of first the Parnell Heritage Summit during Heritage Week in early September, and the inaugural meeting of a new historical group called Parnell Heritage. I attended both meetings, the latter one representing our Society and conveying to the new group the support they have from our Society in their endeavours to set themselves up as a heritage group in Parnell. I gave a speech summarising how our Society came about, what’s involved with incorporating, and what we do. It was well received, with a few questions being asked from those there who were quite interested. It was a heartening experience, as it always is when at a gathering of folk who share the interest of local history. I will be keen to see how this new group progresses. They will be a group under the umbrella of the Parnell Community Committee, along with another new group, Parnell First (this latter group concerned with the conservation and preservation of heritage buildings in that area, and matters to do with district planning.) Well done, Rendell. You’ve put in a lot of hard work. We’re right behind you, and only too keen to help in whatever way we can.
Electrical bits and pieces to Papatoetoe
I had put to the August meeting that we approach MOTAT with regard to seeing if they wanted the bits and pieces taken down from the overhead power poles removed by Vector during the undergrounding of Rosebank Road’s electricity cables this year. These were items collected up (with our thanks) by the staff of Avondale Community Library, in order that they be preserved and not thrown onto a tip somewhere. However, the two-month application period, with no guarantee at the end that MOTAT would take them, seemed daunting. So, as the Society members who went with us to Papatoetoe Historical Society’s museum had such a wonderful time, and as Ross Murray of that Society is so gifted with the way he organises his displays there, I thought I’d offer the items to him. The Society agreed, Ross was only too happy to give the pieces a home (they’re on indefinite loan from our Society), so with the help of Society members Graeme and Gail Ellison who took them down to Ross for us, the bits and pieces have a new home. Thank you Ross, Graeme and Gail for all your help.
PLEASE NOTE — THERE WILL BE NO MEETING IN DECEMBER 2004 Next Meeting of the Society:
2.30 pm, 5 February 2005
Lions Hall, cnr Blockhouse Bay and Great North Roads, Avondale