Cowan family: Collection

Date
[1852-1969], 1987
By
Cowan family; Cowan, James, 1870-1943Cowan, James, 1870-1943
Ref
ATL-Group-00003
Description

Comprises the collection of James Cowan and the Cowan family. Includes material relating to Eileen Cowan, her father, Henry Stowell, and the Stowell and Robson families. Includes James Cowan's personal library of publications with inserted manuscripts, research papers, clippings, and photographs.

Also includes James Cowan's personal diaries, literary drafts, articles, research notes, transcripts, and correspondence.

Topics cover Cowan's research and writing interests including Māori, military and colonial history, the New Zealand Wars, and tourism related topics. Includes correspondence from Kimble Bent, and material relating to the publishing of his story.

Includes watercolours by Thomas Ryan and other art works (some by Eileen Cowan and A H Messenger), photographs, music scores, maps, ephemera and curios. See the pictorial material series for photographs and artworks, and a subseries under this for the cartographic material.

Titles supplied by Library unless otherwise stated.

Relationship complexity - See the Cowan collections which have essentially come from the same provenance. They are held at MS-Papers-0039, and PA-Group-00668 (Purchased from James Cowan's widow circa 1940s), and MS-Group-2097 (Purchased from an auction house in 2012 but originally from the provenance of the Cowan family).

Arrangement: The records in this collection reflect the original order as arranged by James Cowan and members of his family.

James Cowan was a writer, historian and journalist prominent in the first four decades of the twentieth century. He wrote over 30 books and hundreds of articles for newspapers and magazines, mainly about New Zealand's ancient and recent past, its resources and scenic attractions. He made a significant contribution to the popular understanding of New Zealand history over this period. Cowan was a fluent Māori speaker and an early proponent of using oral histories to record historic evidence. He was married twice, the second time to Eileen Constance Stowell who was the daughter of the noted Māori scholar and translator Henry Stowell (Hare Hongi).

Quantity: 629 b&w original photographic print(s). 231 folder(s). 177 b&w original negative(s). 171 volume(s) Most of these volumes are in the Publications series, some of which have an associated folder (of loose material) with the same reference number. 60 item(s) of photographic ephemera. 15 colour lantern slide(s). 7 b&w lantern slide(s). 6 colour original transparency/ies Dufay colour transparencies. 3 curio(s) One metal medallion, and two kākā pōria (bird rings).

Finding Aids: Original donor listing is available. Ask a Library staff member for details..

Provenance: Francis and Christopher Cowan inherited papers from their mother Margaret Cowan, who was James Cowan's daughter-in-law.

Transfers: To Published Sound Collection - 9 78rpm records, 8 of which were presented to James Cowan after he reported the visit of the Duke and Duchess of York, 1927 (PR-15-0425). See reference numbers: Phono q3496 Lc2, Phono q3903 Lc, Phono q3793 Lc3, Phono q3532 Lc2, Phono q5354 Lc, Phono q3510 Lc, Phono q6582 Lc2, Phono q7040, Phono q3602 Lc.

Processing information: This collection was originally given the reference number MS-Group-2378, but in January 2016 was changed to ATL-Group-00003.

The collection has been arranged to retain as much of the original order as possible. Many of the publications had loose material laid in which has been retained, and where possible is housed with the volumes, mostly in a separate folder which has the same reference number as the volume.

The research material (including manuscript material and photographs) were often originally kept in envelopes labelled by James Cowan. These envelopes have been retained for their research value. They are generally housed with the material they relate to.

See the series records for more details.

Access restrictions
Partly restricted material - Most of this collection is unrestricted, but some material requires curator assistance to access.
Format
629 b&w original photographic print(s), 231 folder(s), 177 b&w original negative(s), 171 volume(s) Most of these volumes are in the Publications series, some of which have an associated folder (of loose material) with the same reference number, 60 item(s) of photographic ephemera, 15 colour lantern slide(s), 7 b&w lantern slide(s), 6 colour original transparency/ies Dufay colour transparencies, 3 curio(s) One metal medallion, and two kākā pōria (bird rings), Curios, Ink drawings, Manuscripts, Photographs, Watercolours
There are 12 sub-groups.
There are 358 items in total.
See original record

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Copyright

Unknown
There are 358 items in this group.
Date: 1890-1894, 1910, 1941 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: MS-Papers-11946-023 Description: Published by Methuen, London, 1910. Also some clippings related to Robert Louis Stevenson, and a paper dust jacket of a book 'The works of Robert Louis Steve...
Date: 1897-1942 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: MS-Papers-11946-040 Description: Published by Fisher Unwin, London, 1897. Also clippings that were laid in to the volume. Quantity: 1 folder(s). 1 volume(s). Physical Description: Printed ...
Date: 1925 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: MS-Papers-11946-094 Description: Published by Harry H. Tombs, 1925. Also includes an undated clipping that was laid in to the publication. Quantity: 1 folder(s). Physical Description: One ...
Date: [1891] From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: E-965-f-20 Description: Looking across choppy water to steep mountains at the entrance to Milford Sound. Low cloud obscures one of the peaks. Inscriptions: Recto - beneath image - ...
Hill, Irene, fl 1913-1929: [Portrait of Ahumai Te Paerata]
Date: 13 June 1913 From: Cowan family: Collection By: Hill, Irene, active 1913-1929 Ref: A-472-040 Description: Watercolour on paper portrait of Māori female subject named as "Ahumai", signed "I. Hill", and dated "13. 6. 13". The subject is wearing a garment that appea...
Date: 1908, 1935 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: MS-Papers-11946-091 Description: Published by Angus & Robertson, 1935. Also includes a folder containing one page of research notes, and two newspaper clippings from a series of articles tit...
Date: 1910-1938 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: MS-Papers-11946-173 Description: Twenty-two letters from an envelope labelled "Correspondence from Jim's friends, etc" which also includes some undated correspondence, cards, a book token, a...
From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: MapColl-Cowan-family-04/Acc.55469 Description: Sketch and locality plan most likely by James Cowan, showing locations of fortified pā site. Extensive notes and annotations make reference to sources includ...
Date: 1912-1939 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: fMS-Papers-11946-003 Description: Published by Whitcombe & Tombs, in circa 1912-1913. The book includes loose papers which were laid in to the volume, including clippings, correspondence, and...
Date: 1912-1940 From: Cowan family: Collection Ref: fMS-Papers-11946-002 Description: Published by Whitcombe & Tombs, in circa 1912-1913. The book includes annotations, and loose papers which were laid in to the volume, including clippings, co...