[Mount Cook Company].

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Tono kōrero mai

A compilation of seven audio cuts.
1. Mrs. Jessie Wigley, wife of Rodolph Lysaght Wigley, the founder of the Mount Cook Company, tells of the company's early years. She designed the company's logo of Mt Cook lilies in a circle. Her husband took over the lease for The Hermitage and kept it open in winter for the first time. He also was in the party which first climbed Mount Cook in the winter.
Before World War I, a British Army officer visited and introduced skiing to the South Island. Her husband took it up and brought parties of school children up to Mt Cook in the holidays. She describes the first ski races held there. There were continual battles with local bodies and the government for better road access to Mt Cook.

2. Mrs. Jessie Wigley, her husband and some companions made the first trip by car to the Hermitage in two De Dion Bouton cars. She tells of the experience in the 1900's. She also recalls the first cars going over the Lindis Pass and Crown Range to Queenstown. There was some antagonism towards cars, and at the Lower Shotover bridge a blacksmith threw a hammer at the vehicle in anger. When the first bus drove over the Crown Range, a school holiday was given to the children of Cardrona to mark the event.

3. Mrs. Jessie Wigley tells of the early flying days in the 1920's in the Mount Cook region. Her husband acquired some retired British aircraft, engaged some pilots and formed the New Zealand Aero Transport Company. She recalls the first flight to Invercargill, which caused some alarm. Her husband was also on the first flight from Invercargill to Auckland. Recorded in 1964.

4. An interview with British jazz musician, Acker Bilk, during his New Zealand tour on September 7, 1964.

5. H. Beetham recalls lightering wool in bullock waggons to ships in the open sea at Hawkes Bay in the 1900's. Recorded in 1963.

6. Seventeen year old Owen Schmaltz of Dunedin imitates train noises. Recorded September 27, 1963. [Recorded originally as part of Saturday Night radio programme on 4YA.]

7. Mrs. Charlotte Clifford of Palmerston North at 91 years of age tells of sailing from England as a girl of 10. She mentions a storm in [the Bay of ] Biscay where the ship was dismasted and also talks about the plague, pleurisy and the loss of 39 passengers before they departed in 1882. Recorded in 1964.

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Reference number 157624

Media type AUDIO

Collection Sound Collection

Genre Oral histories
Interviews (Sound recordings)
Sound recordings

Credits RNZ Collection
National Radio (N.Z.) (estab. 1986, closed 2007), Broadcaster
Wigley, Jessie Christie, 1881-1968, Speaker/Kaikōrero
Bilk, Acker, Interviewee
Beetham, H., Interviewee
Schmelz, Owen, Performer
Clifford, Charlotte, Interviewee

Duration 00:29:49

Date [1963-1964]

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