A childhood collection not to be toyed with.
A hobby collection can be serious business, helping future generations get a glimpse into by-gone days and sometimes from the unintended unique perspective of a child. Having recently processed a collection of 182 pencils gathered up by a young lad during the late 1960s-early 1970s, Sarndra Lees - Collection Manager, History, examines what this little treasure trove can teach us today.
As a child of the early 1960s through to late 1970s, I was absorbed with stamp collecting. Through tiny pictures this hobby gave me a glimpse into the world that was back then, inaccessible to many. Overseas holidays even for the working class were rare and we had to learn mostly from television programmes.
Although I didn’t know it at the time, collecting satisfied the tidy ‘freak’ that was later to emerge (don’t look at my work desk! *grin*). Having to sort each stamp by country; soaking off some stamps affixed to torn off corners of envelopes then dry them and making sure they didn’t curl up. I then went on to sort the best page positions in my albums to allow my favourites pride of place.
I also loved First Day Covers. It made you feel you had something special all to yourself. Looking back now I learnt a bit about myself - I can see how my personal traits showed through via my collecting. I still have those stamp albums, they were a big part of my life, both in and out of school. My primary and intermediate schools had great stamp collecting clubs which of course I was a member. Collecting can be an incredibly social activity.
Another very popular collecting theme around the time of my childhood years, were pencils.