Interest in history is dyed in the wool

HUGE crowds at the old Errowanbang woolshed open days last week show there is a need to preserve historical items an Orange historian said yesterday.

Over four days the woolshed attracted more than 5000 people to see history be recreated through a blade shearing demonstration and also tread the historical woolshed boards.

Marsden Memorial Rural History Research Centre (MMRHRC) acting-president Russell Moor said people of Orange are very history conscious.

“I think the people that went there [old Errowanbang] have a very strong interest in rural history and preserving it,” he said.

Mr Moor also backed the push for a museum in Orange and said many people would be able to contribute towards it.

“There’s no doubt that we need a museum,” he said.

“There’s a lot of people that collect history.”

While MMRHRC vice president Gilbert Bailey-Wright said there are many lessons to be learnt from history and it should be preserved.

Mr Bailey-Wright said the open days at old Errowanbang were a wonderful way to show history.

“Instead of history being dry it’s a complete sensory experience,” he said.

“Kids got to have a chance of shearing and that will live with them forever.

“It is one of the most unique sheds in Australia.”

Mr Bailey-Wright said Orange has a lot of history that should be told, including its days as a rural centre and also its mining and commercial background.

A large-size museum that incorporated different areas including mining, rural, sporting and commercial history would be the best option for the community Mr Bailey-Wright said.

If any museum was to be built in Orange Mr Bailey-Smith said interactive exhibitions would be best to tell historical stories and to peak the community’s interest.

“If there was a museum they’d probably need working displays that would incorporate as many senses as possible,” he said.

“It needs to be interactive.”

nadine.morton@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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