An energetic and enthusiastic team of our local youth have been busy learning about sustainability issues and event management over recent months. Krysten Banks from Homebase Youth Service and her team members have organised a sustainability expo that will run in conjunction with one the other major events to coincide with Youth Week this year – the King of the Krater – on April 6. The expo is appropriately named ‘Our World Our Future … Starts With Me’.
Margaret Rogers OAM is an inspiration – Secretary of the Taree and District Eisteddfod for 30 years and Dance Coordinator for almost the same length of time. Over the years, Margaret has seen the local Eisteddfod change and grow, but what hasn’t changed is her love of dance and her determination to support local youth. In 2008, Margaret was awarded an OAM for her service to the Eisteddfod movement …
Never underestimate the amount of work and creative skill that go into creating a beautiful quilt. Kerry Wakely has a love and affinity for patchwork and shares her talent and passion with others at the Taree Craft Centre. If you’d like to experience some beautiful examples of patchwork for yourself, Kerry invites you to attend the Manning Valley Quilt Exhibition, which runs from April 12 – 20.
Dr Armi Aganan works at the Albert Street Medical Centre in Taree. Armi’s background growing up in the Philippines and her adventurous spirit have seen her experience a variety of medical roles – some of which she relates to us here.
April is Autism Awareness Month, and many people may not be aware that there’s a group helping local parents and children to understand the complex issue of Autism Spectrum Disorders. Tracy Fernance (Chairperson) and Sue Bell (Secretary/Treasurer) of Mid North Coast Autism Incorporated (Parents Support Group) shed some light on the subject …
Check out all the thrills, spills and excitement of the Wingham Summertime Rodeo at the Wingham Showground on January 5. Sixteen year old Wingham local Ben Gallagher will be competing on the day, and his excitement and enthusiasm for his chosen sport are obvious … Read more
Bob Murray, 76 years old and a lifetime member of Taree Motorcycle Club, has enjoyed a long-time love of motorbike racing. Bob has some keen memories of some of the Club’s earlier years; in particular, the establishment of the bike track on Old Bar Road, which is still used today …
To the Defence Service in Canberra and to the Principals and students of Great Lakes in the Land District of Tobwabba Yuri Worimi Country Kattung language area, thank you very much for attending what was a very moving day on Tobwabba, 12 November 2012.
Who would have thought that in this small region of the Manning Valley we would have our very own Olympic success story! Sharon meets with Darren Croker of Croker Oars and discovers that it can take more than a winning solution to be successful in business.
The combination of a pristine environment coupled with rich, red volcanic soil produces nutritious and abundant produce for market, as Sandra Fishwick explains …
Sueanne Russell’s family has a history of involvement with World War II. A proud Biripi woman and volunteer, Sue describes the stunning new memorial garden recently established and opened at Marrangbah Cottage in Taree, which was developed to recognise and honour Aboriginal Veterans and offer a place for both healing and reflection …
Interview with Margaret Lewis
Stephanie Jansen is making a name for herself on the Country Music scene as a singer/songwriter. Her recent EP release, Risky, is receiving rave reviews, and plans for a new album are in the pipeline for next year. Stephanie pops into The Aztec in Forster on December 7, fresh from a stint in the Country Music Mecca – Nashville, USA.
How long have you personally been involved with the Manning Valley Historical Society, and what’s your role on the committee?
I have been a member of the Society since the 1980s. With work commitments, my activity was limited. Since my retirement I have had the opportunity to volunteer regularly within the museum, and in 2011, I was elected President of the Society.
Please provide a brief history of the Society – when and how did it first form?
On 20 May 1964, the Mayor of Wingham, Mr Alan Carlyle, chaired a public meeting held in the Supper Room of the Wingham Town Hall. It was called with the purpose of forming a Historical Society and had 22 people and representatives from the two local papers in attendance. It was resolved the motion of Mr E Laird and Mrs J. Gibson that “a historical society be formed”, and it was decided that the society be named “Manning Valley Historical Society” and be located in Wingham. Mr M Gibson was nominated and accepted the position of President, Mrs J Gibson Secretary, Mr A Smalley Treasurer, Mr R Duff Vice President and Mr E Laird Research Secretary. Patrons to the Society were Miss C Gollan, Miss Lobban, Mr PE Lucock, Mr LC Jordan and Mr FC Summerville.
Early minutes record the activity of the society and the need to record histories of shipping and Wingham schools. Mr E Laid, Research Secretary, was to write to The Wingham Chronicle emphasising the importance of preserving documents. In 1965, the Society became affiliated with the Royal Australian Historical Society. Historian Mr Gordon Dennes, a great grandson of Mrs Mary Cann who settled in the Bo Bo Creek area in 1835, was one of the first guest speakers hosted by the Society. His address was ‘The Discovery of the Manning Valley’.
Premises were being sought by the society, and in 1966 Wingham Municipal Council advised that the School of Arts would be considered if it became vacant. In 1966, the Moxey’s building was leased to the Society by the Wingham District Services Club after opposition to the proposal of the site for their new club. In July 1974, the Club sold the building to the Society.
On 30 November 1968, aviatrix Nancy Bird Walton officially opened the museum. In 1993, 25 years after the official opening of the museum, the completed restoration of the museum was officially opened by Nancy Bird Walton AO. OBE, Hon ME (Syd).
This society is one of the few Historical Societies who own their own premises and is staffed entirely by volunteers. The museum is situated in Moxey’s store at 12 Farquhar Street, Wingham. In 1926 the shop front was modernised to what we see today, and in 1988 the building was classified by the National Trust.
The Society looks after the museum located in Farquhar Street, Wingham. What are the opening days and times of the museum, and how much is the entry fee?
The museum is open each day from 10am to 4pm, with the exception of Good Friday, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Entry is adults $3, children $1 and family $7.
What are some of the unique items the museum has on display?
The museum has many items of interest with providence to the district. One such item is a Gaelic Bible which was used for the first Gaelic church service held in NSW. It was brought to Australia by the McLeod family in1837 from the Isle of Skye. We have the doors of the Ashlea Presbyterian Church which was built in 1882 and timber items crafted by the late Mr R Duff, ad also a small organ the late Mrs Elizabeth Beale OBE took with her to play at various church services and events.
What are some of the other activities/events the Manning Valley Historical Society regularly organises?
The Society meets on the third Wednesday morning of each month. New members are always welcome.
At present, the Society is currently assisting the Centenary of Railway committee with their preparations to commemorate in May 2013, the coming of rail to Taree; the War Veterans Remembrance Drive Association, in preparation for the ANZAC centenary.
The Society features displays within the Museum, highlighted this year by a themed display for History Week. An activity sheet for children has been devised and is making the Museum visit interesting for children, as well as Mum and Dad.
Why do you and the committee of the Society feel it’s so important to preserve our history for future generations?
History must be preserved for future generations. Items will not last forever, and in the past items were collected for display. We now research and document the significance of our collection digitally. Gowns from our Collection are being recorded on the National Dress Register of the Power House Museum. Researching an item can open a whole new social history.
What are some tid-bits of history from Wingham that the general public may not be aware of?
Wingham was proclaimed a town in 1844. In 1865, the population of Wingham was 90. In 1868, there were 45 pupils enrolled at Wingham School. In March 1870, cyclonic storms swept the valley, floods devastating crops. In 1874, tea meetings were popular events; they were gatherings to partake of food followed by one or more guest speakers, possibly a visiting minister, often with over 100 people in attendance.
Is there anything else about the Society you’d like to share with readers?
Research is carried out by our archives team Tuesday and Wednesdays. The Society houses a very large collection of photographs, and is always looking for interesting historic photographs.
Volunteers also man the Museum door. Being ‘A Meet and Greet’ person can be interesting; you never know who you may meet, whether it’s former residents coming back to the district, or giving tourists information on the must see places of our district.
For those interested in the museum, or in joining the Society, where can you be contacted?
The Society’s contact details are:
Telephone: (02) 6553 5823
Interview by Jo Atkins.
This interview was found in issue 70 of Manning Great Lakes Focus
This is a good news story of a different kind … a truly inspiring tale of a wonderful dog who’s overcome adversity and an uncertain future to become Australia’s only K-9 champion marathon runner. Mark Jensen and his dog Ty are Team Ty – extraordinary athletes, with an even more extraordinary story to tell …
Meet the man behind Graham Barclay Marine – one of the most successful businesses in the Great Lakes area …