Library News 29 October 2021

Published on October 29, 2021


New Rental Fiction

This Fragile Earth by Susannah Wise
Blood Feud by S.J.A. Turney
The Husbands by Chandler Baker
I know what I saw by Imran Mahmood
Perfect Lie by Claire Sheldon
Operation Black Key by Kim Hughes
The Lost Storyteller by Amanda Block
This one Sky Day by Leone Ross
The Illustrated Child by Polly Crosby
The Newcomer by Laura Elizabeth Woollett

Kiri Pepene
Information Research and Local History Librarian | Kaitohutohu Mātāmua - Ahurea, Whakaaturanga
‘Reflections of Horowhenua: The People and Places of our Past.

Nestled between the Tararua’s and the Pacific Ocean, Horowhenua is ideal land for cultivation and settlement. Along with the Horowhenua and Waiwiwi lakes (the latter also known as Papaitonga after the island in it) these were the principal zones of settlement for tangata whenua.

The immigrants who came to Aotearoa also made it their home. The land was rich and fertile, with rivers, timber and flax and it was the ideal place for a new life.  From Tokomaru in the north to Manakau in the south, the area has a rich cultural past. I am fascinated to find out about these places and the diverse group of the people who lived there.

Recently, I did some research on a family that lived at Moutoa, which is on what is now the Foxton, Shannon Road. I came across reference to a hotel called the ‘Star and Garter’ which appears to have been there as early as 1864 (possibly earlier.) At the time it was owned by a man called Henry Elkins. Peaking my interest, which often happens when doing research, I went off track and got caught up in the history of the settlement at Moutoa. Bit by bit I have pieced together a history of the settlement which has been challenging, but slowly the story of the area is coming together. Watch this space for more about the Moutoa settlement in a future column.

We are lucky that we have a rich archive which contains many photos and documents of our local history. Much of the material that we obtain is through donations. We are very lucky to have received a donation from Anthony Dreaver. Mr Dreaver is author of three books which we have in our Library collection, ‘Levin, Horowhenua County and its People,’ ‘A Centennial History,’ and ‘An Eye for Country: The Life and work of Leslie Adkin.’ Dreaver has done extensive research of our district, much of which is included in the generous donation. The treasure trove of documents and photographs contain jewels and nuggets of our past.

If you are ever cleaning out the garage, the attic or that cupboard in the spare room, you may come across a dusty old box which just might have something in it that records our history in the Horowhenua.  Don’t throw it out! Come and see us, as we might be able to preserve a piece of our district’s history.                                                                                                     

Horowhenua has a fascinating past and we want to celebrate this with our new exhibition ‘Reflections.’ The Heritage room, in partnership with the Horowhenua Family History Group, will be exhibiting ‘Reflections’ in the Te Takeretanga o Kura-hau-pō Gallery Space from Friday 5 November until Tuesday 30 November.

You can find out what we do, how we can help you research your own Family history and allow you to dive into that treasure chest and find more jewels and nuggets of our Districts past.

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