Happy birthday to our library website! We are 20 years old!
Have a ride on the Wayback Machine and take a look at how we looked back in 1995.
The URL back then was http://www.ccc.govt.nz/library/ and here’s the first baby photo:
And on her 20th birthday:
The library website was born on 7 June 1995 (oops sorry we missed the actual big day), and she was the first public library internet presence in Australasia:
… The library’s move into the digital age was further boosted in June 1995, when the library established its first web pages. Part of the Christchurch City Council site, the library’s pages were the first public library internet presence in Australasia. In addition to providing information about the library and its services, they offered online catalogue access for the first time.
Thanks to our ever-innovative librarian Paul Sutherland for bringing that first website online, and for looking after it so well.
I was just trying to fill the hole that the conclusion of the first season of the Outlander TV series, based on the books by Diana Gabaldon, had left in my leisure time.
I found a blog post about the source novels, and an If you like… Diana Gabaldon book list. It seemed I wouldn’t have to wait until the next series to get some more 18th century kilted historical-time-travel-romance in my life. Very good.
But then I idly went searching to see if we had any copies of Highlander (either the movie, or the TV series) and shove me in a sheep’s gut and call me haggis, I stumbled upon… a bunch of shirtless kilt-wearing cover-boys. And not just a couple, but legions of them. Well hello, Jamie Fraser!
It must have been warmer in Scotland in days of yore if this lack of upper body garments is anything to go by. Will ye nae put a vest on, lad?
After rigorous research I can confirm that covers in this particular genre fall in to three categories in which the muscular hero can be –
You’ll be pleased to know that almost all of these titles are available in eBook format, possibly as a result of the “embarrassment factor” that does apparently influence choice of format for recreational reading. Though why you’d be whakamā about reading In bed with a highlander on the bus, I can’t imagine (okay, yes I can).
Which of the above is your favourite Caledonian cover-boy?
The Caxton Press is 80 today. It was launched on 10 June 1935 by John Drew and poet/typographer Denis Glover to publish New Zealand literature. Leo Bensemann had a long and fruitful association as a designer and illustrator with Caxton. Most of the decade’s best writers were first published by the company. Caxton Press tells the story on its website:
THE CAXTON CLUB was a colourful group of students, writing enthusiasts and amateur printers which operated a small printing press in the basement of the University Clock Tower, Worcester Street, in the early 1930s. In 1935, renowned New Zealand literary figure Denis Glover, together with a partner, borrowed £100 for a new press and formed The Caxton Press. They set up in an old wooden shop at 129 Victoria St where they stayed for fifteen years.
A Caxton Miscellany, Saturday 16 February 2013. Flickr: CCL-2013 -02-16-IMG_3708
One of the gems of our digital collection are The Group Catalogues, 1927 — 1977 as printed by Caxton Press. You can see their exquisite work closeup in these digital copies.
More on the Caxton Press
- A Caxton Press set on DigitalNZ
- Search our catalogue for Caxton Press, Leo Bensemann, and Denis Glover.
- Peter Simpson. Bensemann, Leo Vernon, from the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 5-Jun-2013
- Caxton Press – History on their website
- A Caxton Miscellany Christchurch Art Gallery exhibition (our photos)
- Caxton Press exhibition The art of ordered plainness exhibition at Reed Gallery, Dunedin Libraries
- Home and Building, Volume 18 Number 1 (June 1955) The Caxton Press by Brian Bell, NZETC The New Zealand Electronic Text Centre