First, a quick note to my regular readers – thanks so much for all your support and encouragement over the past year. I hope you all enjoyed the holiday season and are ready to make the most of 2014. To get things started here is a short list of some upcoming historical anniversaries to keep an eye out for both here in New Zealand and internationally.
50 Years ago – The Beatles tour New Zealand with concerts in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin.
100 Years ago – The Auckland Exhibition was in full swing. It ran from 1st December 1913 through until 18th April 1914. Crowds enjoyed cultural experiences, industry and trade exhibits, aeronautical displays and giant water chutes. They probably had candy floss as well.
100 Years ago – The First World War begins. Check out the WW100 site for ways to contribute to the commemorations here in New Zealand. There are many ways to get involved and plenty of upcoming publications to look forward to. Here at History Geek I’ll be ramping up the amount of First World War related posts including sharing previously unpublished ephemera, photographs and correspondence from my personal collection.
150 Years ago – In 1864 the New Zealand Wars continued with major engagements in the Waikato at Paterangi and Orakau (Rewi’s Last Stand); Taranaki and Tauranga. Last year I was disappointed at how little media attention was given to the anniversaries of significant New Zealand Wars battles, so expect some more History Geek posts on this conflict.
200 Years ago – Christmas Day 2014 marks the bicentenary of Samuel Marsden’s sermon at Oihi – the first Christian service to be held in New Zealand. Wow, bicentenary. We are getting old aren’t we?
50 Years ago – The Gulf of Tonkin Incident.
100 Years ago – Charlie Chaplin makes his first appearance on the big screen.
100 Years ago – The First World War commences. I’ll be posting updates on centennial commemorations throughout the year – there are some exciting projects going on around the world.
150 Years ago – The American Civil War continues. Additional to bloody battles on land there is a notable world-first at sea – the H.L. Hunley becomes the first submarine to sink an enemy vessel.
200 Years ago – The ‘Burning of Washington’ by British troops followed by the Battle of Baltimore – during which the defense of a fort inspired a poet to pen some lines about the rockets’ red glare and bombs bursting in air. “O say can you see by the dawn’s early light….”
200 Years ago – Napoleon is defeated by the Sixth Coalition, is forced to abdicate and takes a vacation to Elba Island. Spoiler alert: He gets bored and comes back for another go.
So what can you expect here on History Geek this year? I’ll certainly be marking some of the anniversaries mentioned above but you can also look forward to plenty of previously unpublished content from my personal collection, perhaps a review or two, musings on heritage related topics and a collage of colourful stories from the past – there will be shipwrecks, gold rushes, crooks, cooks, captains, fancy dress balls, trenches and wenches. Probably postage stamps too.
To make sure you don’t miss out on all the above you can follow my blog via email or Facebook by clicking the buttons over on the front page. While you are over there also check out the recently updated blogroll – I’m thrilled to be part of a growing community of fantastic history related bloggers both here in New Zealand and overseas. Go check out what they are doing, they are all highly recommended! All the best for 2014 – it should be an exciting year.
© Lemuel Lyes