Russell Museum welcomes the opportunity to report to the community and to wish you Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


The museum grounds have been recently enhanced. New plants with attractive foliage have been established along York Street and the library entrance. A fresh coat of paint to the museum foyer and inner doors has brightened the entrance

The Endeavour ship wing, while closed to the public in October, underwent a thorough cleaning and is now in ship shape condition.


Russell Museum recently received a significant bequest from Jim Yearbury’s estate in the form of a collection of artwork by Pauline Yearbury. The collection consists of; a wood panel which Jim and Pauline produced together, several of Pauline’s paintings, a lino cut; and the original artwork for her book, The Children of Rangi and Papa. The museum hopes to exhibit Pauline’s artwork after restoration of some items is complete.

Artifacts recovered in the 2000 Blomfield archaeological dig, were presented by the Department of Conservation to the museum in June.

Through private inquiries and the internet site TradeMe, Russell Museum has purchased a four volume facsimile set of early land purchases and claims in Northland and several early postcards of Russell.


Temporary exhibitions held this year again concentrated on local content. Tio Reka gave insight into the history of one Russell’s most popular delicacies, the sweet oyster, while Te Ra Tahutu, highlighted the 11th of March 1845, as the day in history when Russell burned. A Marae for Russell gave a textual account of Russell’s community struggle to establish a marae and in

September The Blomfield Dig. What’s under the house? featured artifacts recovered during the Blomfield dig in 2000, in relation to the occupation and use of land.

The December 2008 exhibition is significant. Laurence Aberhart’s exquisite photographs, Maori Churches of Northland may be viewed as a collection for the first time in New Zealand. The exhibition opens December 19 at 5.00 pm. All are welcome to attend.

Dust off your cameras and capture the historic houses of Russell to participate in the museums A Moment in History Photography Competition. Entry forms available January from the museum and website:


Museum staff digitized a small part of the museum collection. These objects can now be viewed on New Zealand Museum’s new website An ongoing project resulting from this initiative is to photograph the entire Russell Museum collection.


Russell Museum continues to be a popular education destination with forty one schools visiting the museum this year. Working together with Pompallier, DoC Visitor Centre and R Tucker Thompson, Russell Museum continues to offer an exciting interactive experience for pupils of participating schools.


Russell Museum continues to enhance visitor experience and with this aim signage in Russell has been upgraded as well as being strategically placed on the Paihia wharf.


Unique books available through the Museum Shop are: The Children of Rangi and Papa by Pauline Kahurangi Yearbury, Puawananga – The Adobe Cottage by Charlotte P Larkin, Jacky Nobody by Anne de Roo and The Artist and the Carver by Damien Skinner


Russell Museum would like to recognize and thank Russell community and national organizations for financial support and assistance in 2008.

A generous grant from the Russell RSA enabled cleaning to be carried out on the thirty foot high ship wing walls and the Endeavour model, as well as repainting the foyer, doors and planter boxes, to brighten the museum for summer visitors.

Thanks to the Lion Foundation, Russell Museum was able to update computer, software, printing and network capabilities.

Financial assistance for general administration expenses was received from the Community Organization Grants.

The museums Oral History Project recently received a grant from the Community Arts Council to further the aims of the project, which is to collect and transcribe significant oral histories of local people, to identify knowledge about the past for the benefit of the community.

Heartfelt thanks goes to Heather Lindauer, our past curator, who continues to visit the museum and share her expertise in the areas of local knowledge and the museum collection.

The Bentwood chair founding curator Marie King used while writing A Most Noble Anchorage, was recently restored thanks to the generosity of Simone Roussell. Simone is a Friend of the Museum. The museum is a charitable trust with donee status. Funds donated to the museum qualify for a tax credit.


Trustees that administer the Russell Museum are: Lorraine Young (chair), Claire Jones (deputy), Terry Greening, Tony Hanlon, Jane Hindle, Eldon Jackson, Bob Magnusson, Rosamund Scoffham, Colleen Bottrell (library representative), Florence Annison (FNDC representative).

Staff who welcome you daily are: Libby Magnusson, Pat McNicoll, Shelley Arlidge, Tina Barlow, (museum assistants), Dianne Davey (administrator), and Marsha Davis (curator).