As newspapers downsize their operations there has been a trend for their photographic collections to be sold to international collectors.
In Masterton the trend has been bucked with the recent transfer of nearly 1,000,000 photographs and negatives from the Wairarapa Times-Age to the Wairarapa Archive.
The newspaper, which was form in 1938 following the amalgamation of the towns two dailies, is housed in a wonderful Art Deco building, styled on the now-demolished Miami Herald building. The newspaper printing has been outsourced and the building sold to a local property developer, the newspaper leasing back part of the space. As part of that process the newspaper’s photographs needed to find a new home and the Wairarapa Archive was the logical place for the, given the close association between the newspaper and the archive.
Masterton District Archivist Gareth Winter is excited to have such an extensive collection of photographs added to the Archive’s collection.
“These photographs represent a unique look at a slice of Wairarapa history for the past fifty years. Through these images we have a window into the way our region has developed.”
It will take a long time to process these photographs but they are currently stored in chronological order and can easily be scanned and reproduced for clients.