The school’s museum goes online to share its story around the world

0
Southland Boys High School archivist Lynley Dear, left, and Nelson-based museum collections management consultant Paula Haines-Bellamy at school this week.  Haines-Bellamy digitizes the school's museum collection.

Kavinda Herath/Stuff

Southland Boys High School archivist Lynley Dear, left, and Nelson-based museum collections management consultant Paula Haines-Bellamy at school this week. Haines-Bellamy digitizes the school’s museum collection.

Southland Boys’ High School is digitizing its museum’s collection to give people around the world online access to its story.

A member of the school’s alumni association committee, Ken Bowie says that when the collection goes online next year, it will be an invaluable tool for people looking for research material. All editions of the school’s annual magazine, The Southlandian, from 1902 to 2021, are already online.

“We get a lot of inquiries from people wanting to donate items to the museum,” Bowie said.

“It’ll be online for everyone to watch – old boys [of the school] especially.”

READ MORE:
* Feilding High School centennial celebrations unveil historic gems
* Wyndham Museum collection goes digital, building is still closed
* Southland Museum collections enjoyed from the comfort of home
* Southland Boys’ High School Old Boys Association to digitize school history

The alumni association has been a big supporter of the museum and its operator-archivist, Lynley Dear, since it opened in 2006.

Digitizing the museum’s contents would add a layer of protection around preserving the school’s history, Dear said.

” It’s a security measure.

“God forbid, if the [museum] building was struck by lightning and burned down, there would still be a complete digital record of everything I put there over the years.

Nelson-based Paula Haines-Bellamy is carrying out the digitization work after the boys’ alumni association secured funding from the Southland Regional Heritage Committee. Haines-Bellamy has a background in museum collections management.

The project had received $15,000 and it was unknown if additional funding would be required,” Bowie said.

Haines-Bellamy thought there could be over 500 items to process, including solid items, such as sports mugs, blazers, framed photos and an old school bell.

Paper documents were also photographed or scanned, she said.

It was important for the school and the alumni association to know what historical items they had, Haines-Bellamy added.

“I think most schools are becoming aware of their own history and how to deal with it.

“The Southland Boys are lucky to have a building for this [museum]. Many schools would not have this facility or space.

The SBHS museum building was built in 1914 and once housed a tractor before becoming the home of the school’s history collection.

Lynley Dear, Ken Bowie and one of the school’s former rectors, Rowly Currie, were among those who searched the school for early museum pieces.

“Some people donated items…we even got old-school walking sticks, old-school gear, and old scales,” Bowie said.

“We knew there were items around the school in sheds and some things that were rescued from the dumpster during classroom renovations.”

Meanwhile, Dear is compiling a book about the history of the school, from its opening in 1881. The book will be launched in 2026 when the school celebrates its 100th anniversary by moving from its original building in Forth St to its current location in Herbert St.

Share.

About Author

Comments are closed.