Dusty bits of yellowed paper, immaculate handwriting and minutes of meetings aren't things which tend to get people excited.
In fact, minutes of meetings are hated by nearly everyone who's ever had to suffer writing them, and are normally forgotten or unread once they've been written. But not these ones.
A new trove of minutes chronicling the early codification and growth of rugby league in Orange has been unearthed and donated to the Orange library, recording the one of the earliest known competitions in the Central West.
Grant Jaeger, grandson of Group 10 life member Jack Jaeger, donated his family's collection to the library on Tuesday.
They're going to look after it and digitise it and it can be there forever and a day.Grant Jaeger
The collection included notebook, nearly falling apart, which contained the minutes for the first two years of the Central West Rugby Football League, from 1912-1914.
Alongside that were several photos, including the Lucknow Brass Band taken some time before 1900 and a photo of the Lucknow rugby side which won the Skidmore Cup in 1909.
On April 20, 1912, a few dozen men from Lucknow, Spring Hill and all across Orange came together in Forrester's Hall on a Saturday evening to produce a competition which over a century later would become known as Group 10.
The men, from what would become four football clubs - the first football clubs in the region and some of the first clubs founded away from the coast, drafted out a committee and laws of the game to codify what was at the time a very fluid sport.
The Central West Rugby Football League would be formed by Our Boys FC, the West End Pirates, Waratahs and Spring Hill FC.
Months later, Balmain came up on the train to play at Wade Park in one of the first regional rugby league trips anywhere in Australia.
"It's a sentimental thing for me now, my grandfather and father had it and they're both passed away now and it's nice to know it's found a home. They're going to look after it and digitise it and it can be there forever and a day," Jaeger said.
Jaeger is an old Orange name, and the both Jack and Grant's dad Trevor served on council for 33 and 25 years respectively, giving extra push to the decision to donate the book to the library.
"Inside it's in pretty good nick. There are only a few pages at the back which aren't great but the staff say they can digitise it and work the words out," Jaeger said.
Jaeger's grandfather never played despite serving on numerous committees across "a very long time" - from 1914 until well into Group 10's formative years after the Second World War.
The book lived at the back of Jack's shed for decades before it was handed down to Trevor, who ensured it stayed in the same condition, and when he died a few years ago the book was handed down again.
He only pulled it out again in recent months to show historian Bob Curran, who'd asked for some of his father's other photos.
"I thought 'I should show him that book' and when I did he was blown away," Jaeger said.
The Tragers have been linked to CYMS for decades, but now Grant Jaeger doesn't have much to do with sport in the region - he spend more weekends in Sydney watching his beloved Manly Sea Eagles than he does at Wade Park following the green and golds.
"I'll follow it and see if Orange teams are winning," he said.
Orange mayor Reg Kidd - a sporting fanatic - also had relatives involved in the formation of Orange's rugby league scene.
Kidd himself is an Emus stalwart, having hopped codes after his university days, but can still trace his connection through his grandfather to Old Boys FC from Lucknow, and said the book "means a lot".
"It's not long after rugby league was formed in Australia so it is really quite significant," Kidd said.
He said the rules would be something he'd take particular interest in, with unlimited tackles the biggest difference he'd picked up on a cursory look-over.
The photos as well brought back memories for Kidd, both his own and ones passed down by his parents and grandparents.
"Back then you had to get dressed up, everyone had a tie on and a vest on and a hat, if you were the manager or the secretary or the coach you were dressed up, now they're all in jeans," he said.
Kidd paid tribute to the Jaeger family.
"What was significant about it was going back to Jack Jaeger, and he gave it to Trevor and I had the honour of serving for many, many years with Trevor."
"To have over 200 pages of the minutes of those meetings and I'm sure there'll be a lot of detail in there," Kidd said.
"We're very very much indebted to your family for a lot of things and this is just another fine thing the Jaeger family has done for the community."
The book will be digitised over coming months and made available to the public as an online resource for all to trawl through.
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