Thirty five years ago this photo was given to the museum in Hamilton. That museum predated the current museum by some years and did not have the staff nor the facilities which now exist.
Maybe as a consequence of that shortfall, we have virtually no information about this picture. Perhaps however, the donor may not have known any detail. What information we do have is scant.
It was the annual dinner of the Waikato Dairy Company. We do not know the year but would 1920s be a fair shot? There are some wing collars and some chaps have no collars at all. The tweed suit the older chap with the white beard is sporting was common apparel for the famous George Bernard Shaw – usually knickerbockers rather than trousers.
It is hoped this is summer because they are waiting for vegetables (I suppose) and in this photo the meat looks awful but it was probably cold roast beef or mutton apart from the rather large drumstick on a plate in the foreground. For refreshment they appear to have a choice of water or beer. With the aid of a TIFF image I can tell you one bottle shows just enough detail on the label to read ‘Hop Beer’.
Well, they look as if the deserve it – they are, at a guess, a hardy bunch who probably did most of their farm work without tractors or farm bikes or modern milking machines and it doesn’t stop there – these were ‘manual’ farmers.
Contact Perry if you know anything at all about this pic.
- Photograph copyright Hamilton City Libraries