North Otago Museum Blog
Featuring thoughts and ideas from the North Otago Museum.
This Speedway washing machine would have been sold in New Zealand around 1930. It is a single tub washer, although there was also a twin-tub Speedway, which was a pre-cursor to the Hoovermatic. Our Speedway is a non-electric agitator style of washer made of galvanised tin with a copper exterior.
Ordinary objects can sometimes turn out to be extraordinary. This can be because of the stories that accompany the object, or perhaps because of the object’s rarity or value. This is certainly the case for many of the North Otago Museum’s everyday objects!
North Otago Museum holds around thirty memorial and honours boards. Honours boards have come from schools, clubs and societies, whilst the memorial boards pay tribute to soldiers killed.
Many soldiers bought embroidered items like this cloth to send home to their mothers, sisters, wives or sweethearts.
The Ardgowan-Weston Red Cross made this quilt during the First World War. It was probably made between 1915 and 1917.
The day I first saw this collection item I knew it was something special. I wasn’t expecting it. When I was opening a box looking for a different World War One related item, I found this instead.
One lives on deep levels
One takes sharp turns in a time like war
And all through life:-
I see a Cross
Where Sons of God yield up their Breath
There is no Life except by Death
I find gas masks one of the most evocative World War One items. Looking at a gas mask makes me consider the horrors of being gassed. This gas mask would have been issued to a soldier during World War One. They were called PH helmets. The PH stood for phenate hexamine.
“I washed five pairs of socks that afternoon, and hung them out to dry on the fence by my hut and watched them for a few hours with a jealous eye as some of them were fine knitted ones from Oamaru.
This beautiful doll was made in France around 100 years ago. The maker was a company called Société Française de Fabrication de Bébé & Jouets.
The Hampden-Waianakarua Women’s Patriotic Association embroidered hundreds of names on this signature or autograph quilt. Projects like this were a popular fundraiser around the world during the First World War.
Propaganda is used to influence people. During the First World War the British and their allies used propaganda. They attempted to encourage hatred of the Germans to boost support for the war effort. Propaganda took many forms such as posters and speeches.
This intriguing object is a dried plant that was brought back from Egypt after the First World War.
Elizabeth Forrester (nee Stevenson), made an impressive contribution to the war effort.
Water bottles were an important piece of kit for the soldiers.
Of all the items in the North Otago Museum and the Waitaki District Archive connected with the First World War, I find this one the most moving.