News

Sue Needham Writes

Sue Needham contacted us earlier this week, excited to find that our project and her Emily Harris research are a perfect fit. Michele and Betty will be in Sydney at the Mitchell Library in a few weeks’ time. With luck, Sue will fly from Brisbane to meet us and examine Emily’s handcoloured New Zealand Flowers, Read More…

On the ground at Nile St

We’ve been thinking about 34 Nile St, Nelson for a long time now, consulting street plans, Post Office Directories and electoral rolls in our efforts to trace the movement of Harris family members on the site 1862-1925. We know that the family arrived in Nelson in three instalments. Sarah Harris sailed 11 April 1860 from Read More…

Nile Street again

Last week Michele and I contacted our Nelson correspondents/field researchers Belinda Fletcher and Iain Sharp with a small photo from the Harris family album. The photo is a street view with a row of three houses to the right behind a picket fence, a big tree after the second house, 8 figures on the road Read More…

Flames and archives

In her diaries from the 1880s Emily Harris tells two stories about burning. The first concerns the destruction of a diary when she was a young woman in Taranaki in the late 1850s. She is painfully conscious of the loss her action imposed at the time and regrets it still: Well, long ago, some seven Read More…

34 Nile St, Nelson

It is February 2018. We are visiting Peter and Roseanne Cranstone at their farm near Fordell, south of Whanganui. Roseanne has brought out the paintings and drawings by Emily and Edwin Harris she inherited from her father Philip Briant. Her cousin’s wife Judith is looking at a panorama of Nelson in Edwin’s sketchbook and says Read More…

Kōwhai

I passed a kōwhai tree in flower this morning and thought of Emily. The early springtime flowers are opening up one after another and the tūī birds are getting louder and louder. Soon they’ll crowd the kōwhai, turning their beaks bright yellow with pollen. I love to see a puffed up tūī singing in black Read More…

Some Lighted Windows

What made Edwin Harris draw and paint the view from Marsland Hill in New Plymouth 3 August 1860? And what made him produce multiple versions of the scene that shows troops from the 40th Regiment being brought ashore and lined up to march on Māori positions near Waitara, 16 km to the north of the Read More…