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Upright piano; John Brinsmead & Sons Ltd. (estab. 1836, closed 1920); c. 1880; XCH...

Upright piano; John Brinsmead & Sons Ltd. (estab. 1836, closed 1920); c. 1880; XCH.198
Upright piano; John Brinsmead & Sons Ltd. (estab. 1836, closed 1920); c. 1880; XCH.198Upright piano; John Brinsmead & Sons Ltd. (estab. 1836, closed 1920); c. 1880; XCH.198
Name/Title
Upright piano
About this object
This piano belonged to Marion Millar (nee Clendon) and was used by her at Harena, the homestead built by her and her husband, Thomas, on the Waima River. According to her daughter, Florence Keene, Marian was "an accomplished pianist, she often entertained guests on a summer's evening as they sold in the cool air on the verandah." (1)

During the Victorian era, young girls and women were often taught how to play the piano as it not only provided a creative outlet, but was also a vital source of entertainment. Often, families and friends would gather around the piano to sing songs and hold soirees.

This piano was donated to Clendon House in c. 1974, as Marian was the daughter of the house’s original owner, Captain James Reddy Clendon and his second wife, Jane Takotowi Clendon (nee Cochrane). Marian was born on 16 June 1864. As a young girl, Marian and her siblings were taught by a governess, Mrs Bennett, in the attic room under the gables of Clendon House. At the age of 17, she married Thomas Lumsden Millar, the Postmaster at Rawene, and they had seven children George Frederick Graham, Edward Lumsden, Trevor Clendon, Thomas Lumsden, Frances Edith, Ruth Takotowi and Marion Elizabeth, more commonly known as Peggy. Marion died in 1961 at the age of 97 years.

(1), Florence Keene, 'Under Northland Skies: Forty Women of Northland', 1984, p. 119.

For more information about the Clendon family and Clendon House, which is cared for by Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga, visit our website.

Maker Role
Manufacturer
Date Made
c. 1880
Place Made
London, England
Medium and Materials
Wood, walnut and brass
Inscription and Marks
A maker's label is located on the inside of lid and reads 'John Brinsmead & Sons Ltd.'
Measurements
124.5 x 138 x 65.5cm
Credit Line
Collection of Clendon House, Heritage New Zealand Historic Pouhere Taonga
Object number
XCH.198

Tags

Entertainment
Gender roles
James Reddy Clendon
Jane Takotowi Clendon (nee Cochrane)
Marian Millar (nee Clendon)
Motherhood
Music
Social activities
Thomas Lumsden Millar


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