Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Early NZ Journal Won't Be Exported

The Otago Daily Times reports that a bookseller in Dunedin, NZ has decided not to sell the recently-rediscovered journal of an early settler to an overseas buyer. Malcolm Moncrief-Spittle (whose name sounds like something from an Evelyn Waugh book) first said that he had accepted a bid "for a five figure sum" from a prospective buyer outside New Zealand; he later revised that statement, to say that "having subsequently checked further on the contents of the Protected Objects Act, he had changed his mind." He's now looking to sell the diary to the Alexander Turnbull Library (the National Library of New Zealand).

Edward Jerningham Wakefield's journal covers the period from 1850-1858, when Wakefield was serving as a representative in the NZ parliament and on the Provincial Council. He had previously visited the area in 1839 with his uncle William Wakefield, and published an 1845 book Adventures in New Zealand. The journal had been presumed lost until it appeared for sale at auction last year.

The contents of the journal will be published next month by Kilmog Press.

[h/t Shelf:Life]

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