Social media of the 1950s

Last updated 14:24 01/01/2014

The Marlborough Express 1954

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Express files

Award winner reflects on a good year New Blenheim market 'just like Hong Kong' Closure of gasworks a shock for consumers Small boy saved from 'school river' Eye-catching ads Aerodrome struggles to get off the ground Factory festivities at Paradise Dramatic moments come in twos Hotel falls make the news Mongrels run amok in Blenheim

Maike van der Heide continues the series looking back over stories of interest from the Marlborough Express files. This instalment is from April 21, 1954. 

Who was on holiday in Blenheim, who was on holiday out of Blenheim, whose baby was christened and who was hosting their daughter from out of town?

It would all be on Twitter or Facebook these days, but back in the 1950s it was in the news.

Titled Topics for women, the column features snippets of events in the daily lives of Marlborough readers.

The information was sent in specifically for this purpose, probably necessitating a trip to the newspaper office or at least a phone call, whereas nowadays they would be posted on the internet in mere seconds, probably from a mobile phone.

The Express had always reported social news, such as where residents had been on holiday and what they thought of it, but obviously the editor of 1954 decided this sort of information was specifically of interest to only women.

"Miss Judy March, of Auckland, is spending a fortnight with her parents, Mr and Mrs D March at Grovetown," the column reads.

"Mr and Mrs G Robinson, of Lake Timara, are visiting the latter's parents, Mr and Mrs N M Rabone, at South Karori, Wellington," states the report, mentioning also that the Robinsons had just hosted visitors from Christchurch over Easter.

"Mr and Mrs B Harper, of New Plymouth, are spending a fortnight's holiday with their daughter, Mrs J E Caldwell."

The column also contains notices truly of interest only to women, such as coverage of a meeting of the Havelock Suburban Women's Institute, details of an upcoming Women's Division annual meeting, a guest speaker at the YWCA convention and - very importantly - the "importance of belts and buttons for simple frocks".

Right at the end of the column there is mention of a new operating theatre block at Wairau Hospital that is nearing completion, according to the Marlborough Hospital Board.

The board also reported that extensions to the Holmdale Maternity Hospital were going satisfactorily, as were extensions to the laundry.

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- The Marlborough Express

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