More district mischief

It's that time once again! At the Ashburton Museum we often come across some strange things from day to day, including odd and interesting stories from the archives.

Albert Ager, an architect of note

Albert Ager was an architect from Christchurch who briefly made his mark in Ashburton during the late 1890s and early 1900s. Ager trained at the School of Architecture at Canterbury College, Christchurch. It seems that before coming to Ashburton, he lectured at the School of Art. He delivered a series of lectures on the history... Continue Reading →

The roaring twenties

While for many the roaring twenties evoke thoughts about the USA, Great Gatsby and feather headbands, there is actually a lot to be said about the 1920s in New Zealand. Radio, cinema, gramophones, motor cars, electricity, fuel, the broadening of educational and professional sectors and cities were all expanding as ‘modern’ New Zealand came of... Continue Reading →

Dry Docks and Sunspots

People are always trying to predict and speculate on the future – it’s often more important to us than the present. Whether we are thinking ahead at work, checking the weather, or making financial decisions, the future is always on our minds. The distant future, too, is often the subject of much discussion and thought,... Continue Reading →

A tiny museum

Ashburton District is lucky to have a wealth of museums – from the relatively large Ashburton Museum, Aviation, Vintage Car, Lynn Woodworking and Plains Vintage Railway and Historical Museums, to the relatively small Staveley Museum, Mt Somers’ Foothills Museum, and Corwar Lodge near Barrhill. The Methven Heritage Centre includes several museum activities, including the New... Continue Reading →

The Namesake of Our Valetta

While the team at Ashburton Museum were working on Ashburton: Feels Like Home, our 2019 Spring exhibition, we became even more interested than usual in all the things that make this district feel special and familiar. Home is a big theme, and it was especially interesting trying to tease out the myriad sights, ideas, experiences... Continue Reading →

End of the Line

When I was a very young child living in Ireland, I had an ungodly obsession with trains. I loved everything about them – there was just some elusive appeal that drew me to anything that slid on rails and went “choo-choo”. I loved my Thomas the Tank Engine toys so much that I used to... Continue Reading →

Papers on Canvas

One never knows what will be donated to Ashburton Museum and last year a rather large and old piece of canvas was brought in, which contained a number of seaman’s discharge papers and letters dating from the 1860s that once belonged to Robert William Shearman. The canvas and papers turned out to be an important... Continue Reading →

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