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Taranaki Stories

These stories capture the very essence of Taranaki – the people and the landscape.
They record the achievements of those who live here, the struggles of the first settlers, the determination to overcome challenges, those who have made their mark on not only their own, but also future generations.
But the stories are not just about hardship – they are also inspiring, thrilling, mystifying, enlightening and entertaining.
 
 

 

Taranaki Stories

Showing stories tagged as Influenza.

God Has Been Good To Me – Sister Anne Keegan Looks Back

by Rhonda Bartle on 14 December 2009

Born of good English and Irish stock, Sister Anne Keegan's story begins in New Plymouth in 1911, but it's the memories of farming life and creative ways that saw her family survive the Depression years that perhaps stick out the most.   In the warm sunroom of the Mission Home, New Plymouth, she speaks easily and full of gentle grace about times long ago, when her name was Mary, and her nickname...

Bog, bush and candlelight medicine – Dr Doris Gordon

by Sorrel Hoskin on 14 December 2009

Doris Jolly and her friend Francie Dowling gazed apprehensively at the ivy covered windows of the anatomy school opposite. It was the eve of what they feared would be a big ordeal – their first class in corpse dissection. The students at Otago Medical School weren't afraid of the bodies (‘they can't be any worse than dog fish’), but the thought of making fools of themselves in front of the men...

Life on a back-blocks farm – Roland Kennedy

by Sorrel Hoskin on 10 December 2009

Roland Kennedy learnt how to harrow with the help of a goat.  The young boy used to hook the white nanny up to a small set of harrows his father had made and cut farrows up the hillside next to the house on his parent's Tāhora farm. "I was mimicking my Dad I suppose," recalls the 83-year-old. "It was a good learning opportunity. 'Nanny' was just the right size. I would follow along behind my...

Spanish Influenza NZ’s Worst Disaster

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

The still body of a young Inglewood boy is covered with a sheet and moved to the New Plymouth morgue. It is believed that four-year-old Michael Dravitzki has fallen foul to Spanish influenza, a potent strain of the virus that swept the world in 1918-19. Medical staff at the New Plymouth Hospital on Barrett Street have been dealing with a rapid stream of patients suffering sore throats,...

Flu Facts – Counting the Costs

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

Imagine a virus so deadly that in less than two years it would kill more than 40 million people in the world. That's equivalent to wiping out the entire population of Spain right now, or all the people of Australia twice over. This is not science fiction, or scaremongering about germ warfare. This is a true story set in 1918. At the end of World War I, Spanish Influenza swept the world....