Have you got an Oranga story to tell?
Do you have a story to tell about Oranga? Perhaps you grew up there, or you used to visit family, or you live there now? As the neighbourhood undergoes redevelopment, this is an opportunity for those with strong connections to the area to have their memories recorded by an oral historian.
The project is supported by Maungakiekie-Tãmaki Local Board, and historians from Auckland Libraries are planning to have local, informal sessions with individuals and groups, where they hope to build up a picture of what life in Oranga was like.
“Oranga is an area that hasn’t had a lot recorded about it,” says Auckland Libraries oral historian Sue Berman. “We’re keen to tap into the local memory and celebrate it. We’re looking for people of all ages and experiences. Older folk, especially, can be an absolute treasure trove of memories.
“The beauty of talking aloud about your memories is that it often brings to mind more recollections of people, places and events, and these might not be found anywhere else. It could be details about the shops, the school you went to, well-known local people, where you lived and who your neighbours were, and it’s a fabulous way to build up a picture of a suburb, especially a neighbourhood like Oranga which is in the midst of such change.”
Auckland Libraries hold a collection of oral histories – recorded interviews that preserve the words and recollections of people, and the Oranga stories will potentially be added to the collection. Those who participate will be given a digital copy of their interview to keep, but will be able to decide how these recordings are used in the future.
The team has already met with representatives from the Oranga Community Centre, and the To Wahi Community Trust, but they are especially keen to uncover hidden stories from Oranga residents, past and present. “If you have a story to tell from Oranga’s recent or distant past, then we could be interested in hearing about it.”
An aerial view of Oranga, 1948. White’s Aviation. Auckland Libraries Heritage Collections 09 957-286