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Byron Shire
March 31, 2023

Creating a COVID-19 history for the future

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Letter to Frank Bray from his sister, Dorothy (Dolly), 2 March 1895 (detail)

It will be a long time before the COVID-19 of 2020 will be forgotten, but the details might slip away in time.

The Tweed Regional Museum is actively collecting stories to record how the local community is living through the COVID-19 pandemic and they are asking local families and children to share their thoughts, feelings and drawings about daily activities at home, through a handwritten letter.

The letter-writing project focuses on connecting to the community and documenting life for the Tweed during this historic time and draws its inspiration from a group of letters in the Museum collection written by children in the late 1800s.

Lenny, aged 4, of Kingscliff wrote to the museum about how he misses his grandparents who live over the border in Queensland.

The letters and other material will be compiled in the Museum’s collection for future generations to learn how daily lives were affected during this time. A selection of letters will be featured on the Museum’s website and social media pages.

Museum Director Judy Kean says letter writing is an example of human connection and gives a snapshot of different historical moments that is quite different from information available through other less personal forms of communication.

Kendra Henderson and Winnie Walsh write letters to the Museum about their COVID-19 experience.

‘This invitation to write a letter about what it has meant to live through the COVID-19 shutdown, is inspired by letters written between the Bray children in the late 1800s and early 1900s while living at Kynnumboon near Murwillumbah, on the family property.

‘They’re full of daily details and doings about life at home and even include small drawings. It’s that very immediacy and detail of daily life that makes them such wonderful historical documents.

Ms Kean says that now, more than ever it’s important to record our experiences. ‘We are hoping this project brings a moment of connection and reflection to those writing in.

‘We are encouraging children to sit down with their families and write us a handwritten letter about this time and become a part of history!’

This project is part of Council’s Together Tweed initiative and is designed to keep the community connected to discovering local history during the COVID-19 shutdown.

Send your letters to:

Tweed Regional Museum
Tweed Shire Council
PO Box 816
Murwillumbah, NSW. 2484

For more information visit: museum.tweed.nsw.gov.au/letter and follow facebook.com/TweedRegionalMuseum


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