Letter, Tiny White

White, Tiny
Production date

Object detail

Brief Description
Letter to the Be Our Guest competition by Tiny White (nee Groome). She writes of her memories of the 1931 Hawke's Bay earthquake.

Tiny was on route to a dentist's appointment in Napier with her mother when the earthquake struck. They were driving through Clive and her mother could not control the car. It ended up in a drain. They could see water tanks crashing to the ground and bursting. The ground was opening with large cracks. They removed the car from the ditch and drove on towards Napier until people driving out of Napier said not to go any further because the bridges were damaged and Napier was on fire.

When they returned to the family's farm at Te Onepu, the three chimneys had fallen inside the house and the house was off its foundations. For the next nine months her family slept on camp stretchers under tents on the tennis court. The ground never stopped shaking. The dogs would sense when another earthquake was coming and would run into the tents.

Tiny was supposed to be starting as a boarder at Queenswood School in Hastings on 3 February 1931. The school was damaged so she continued riding her horse to school at Argyll for another year.
Production date
Production period
Production technique
Media/Materials description
A4 printed sheets; typed. Handwritten signature.
In Be Our Guest Folder No 2: Height x Width: 298 x 210mm
Tiny White, Signature
Subject person
Subject period
Subject date
03 Feb 1931
Credit line
gifted by Mrs Tiny White
Other number(s)
m2006/27/79, 34802


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