My extra surprise

Continuing on the hunt and return theme and building on the success of my medal purchase earlier this year, I recently bought a September 1937 framed lifesaving certificate off Unfortunately the non-intelligent seller didn't do as i suggested i.e. cardboard over the glass, wrap in bubblewrap, don't put any form of sticky tape near the object to retain the integrity of it, put plenty of fragile stickers on the outside and courier it to me, but stuck a couple of old dirty teatowels to the front adhered by strip sticking plasters, placed in a pillowslip and sent it normal post without any fragile warnings. Of course not only the glass was shattered and the frame broken but the fragile backing tore off with the item :-(   I shouldn't have been surprised the previous owner wouldn't care, afterall it had been stored in his damp garage for years. 

This certificate was awarded to Moyra HOWARD for "practical knowledge of Rescue, Releasing oneself from the Clutch of the Drowning and for ability to render aid in Resuscitating the Apparently Drowned." Written in smaller writing beside her name is "Enfield Schools LA [lifesaving association?]

Enfield was a "settlement which lies between the Waiareka and Windsor junctions on the Oamaru - Tokarahi branch line of railway" [1] and situated approximately 18 km inland from Oamaru in the South Island and

The original Enfield school was opened in 1875[2]

Moyra's certificate was signed by J G WRAITH - Chairman of the Central Executive and Alwyn E BISCOE - Chief Secretary.

Continuing to carefully disassemble the tragic mess infront of me, a couple of live silverfish fell out also eww...BUT...underneath was a 18 July 1901 London College of Music [with honours] certificate for Miss Gertrude Sophia DAWSON and her Elementary section, pianoforte playing. She was a pupil of Miss Edith E. DEBENHAM and signed by an illegible examiner with title Mus. Bac. Oxon.

Now I have 2 certificates to find relatives [family genealogists] for! Not bad for $5.50. This cloud definitely had a silver[fish] lining



  1. But for the sloppy packaging an historical relic might have gone unnoticed for another 70 years or more - such are the vagaries of history.

    If you were to add the full names, dates, etc. on the certificates to this post, then a 'net search by a descendant might well lead to an interesting consequence.

  2. Indeed Mr CH ... there are so many undiscovered treasures out there for sure! This was really exciting for me :-)

    I wasn't going to put the names in the post until i'd got round to doing my own hunt first but i guess can, i've done a rudimentary search :-) It worked fairly promptly for the return of the British War Medal etc i purchased earlier this year by adding the information to specific newsgroups.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanx Darian! It was very exciting to find :)))) Wish it would happen more often!


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