Oral History

The Oral History Recorders' Group

The Treasury’s oral history collection enhances our archives and provides another way to fill voids in our knowledge of our rohe/region’s history. Memories transmitted orally breathe fresh life into exploration of the past, offering personal lived experience and further insight into events and periods.

If you have memories that pertain to Te Tara o te Ika a Māui that you would like to contribute, or a story to share that was passed to you by an elder, we would love to hear from you. Please contact us.  

A selection of our oral history recordings is featured below. Some of our oral history CD's are available for purchase online from our shop, and more will be added over time. Alternatively, contact our team to find out whether we have any other recordings of interest.

THE TREASURY’S ORAL HISTORY TEAM

From the early 2000s, a group of passionate individuals recognised the need to collect and preserve the oral histories from the people of the wider rohe. The Oral History Recorders’ Group, a fully volunteer team, was founded and operated for many years under the umbrella of The Treasury and Toyota generously donated recording equipment. The oral history resource currently held at The Treasury was largely created by this group. Today, as many of our original volunteers retire, it is time now to rebuild an Oral History team.   If you are interested in becoming involved as a team member in any of the many capacities involved in this process of recording, please contact us.  Support, mentoring and formal training is available for committed volunteers.    

Why do oral history recordings?

Our motto is ‘Our People Our Stories’, and we gather the stories of today for tomorrow. We all have memories of grandparents telling us stories and wish we could remember them. Let us not lose any more.

The stories give us:

  • An insight into the lives of everyday people.
  • Histories of businesses and local organisations.
  • Family histories recorded in the person’s own words.
  • A record of changes in spoken language.
  • Information that supplements other resources.
How is an Oral History recorded?

An initial discussion with the interviewee is held. Background information is collected and possible questions are drafted by an interviewer, which are then run by the interviewee.  Following agreement and signoff by the interviewee, the interview is conducted, with The Treasury providing all recording equipment.  A complimentary copy of the final recording is gifted to the interviewee and the recording (and any associated documents) are made available at The Treasury.  

What does the Oral History Group do?

The majority of recordings are done with an individual in a one-to-one interview. Family members also participate at times.

We are always looking for new challenges, and welcome your suggestions (and help) for future recordings.


Who can do an Oral History recording?

The answer is that ANYONE can. While many of our interviewees have been elders, the opportunity is there for anyone to record their memories. For instance, at the South School reunion, teachers past and present shared their memories about the school.

If you have memories that pertain to Te Tara o te Ika a Māui that you would like to contribute, or a story to share that was passed to you by an elder, we would love to hear from you.(link to manager.thetreasury@gmail.com) or phone (07) 868 8827 during opening hours.

What rohe or area does the Oral History team cover?

The Treasury Oral History team records oral histories that pertain to Te Tara o te Ika a Māui - the Coromandel Peninsula, Ohinemuri, Te Aroha and the Hauraki Plains.  

I'd like to help. Is the Oral History team taking on new volunteer members?

Yes, the Oral History team actively welcomes new members.  Today, as many of our original volunteers retire, it is time now to rebuild an Oral History team.  

As a volunteer group, the Oral History team members carry out all administration and interviews.  They upskill through mentoring and workshops in interview technique, the use of recording devices, preparation of abstracts and typing of transcripts.  The team works closely with The Treasury Manager and The Treasury’s marketing/communications contractor to promote and make accessible the recordings made.  

If you are interested in becoming involved as a team member in any or all of these capacities, please contact (linkto manager.thetreasury@gmail.com) us.  

Featured Oral History Recordings

In November 2017, the Thames Catholic parish celebrated 150 years on the Thames Goldfield. In preparation for the event and preparation of a reunion book, the Oral History Recorders Group assisted with interviews of past pupils, teachers and supporters: Bill Kedzlie, Max Twentyman, Mary Martin, Eileen Campbell and Mary Connors.

The interviewees shared descriptions of the old church and school buildings, along with curriculum details, names of pupils and teachers.

If you have a story to tell, we will always be delighted to hear from you.

Email us at The Oral History Recorders Group c/o The Treasury

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