Well I got sent a whole bunch of amazing information and newspaper clippings by a fantastic lady at the BNZ archives. Clippings about the history and development of the Bank in Samoa and the transition to the BNZ becoming the Bank of Western Samoa, which was what Dad had gone over to be a part of anyway… So you could say, a veritable GOLDMINE of background information as to why Dad was there, and what life was like at that time… The building that was on show in one of my pics the other day was constructed in 1957 to replace a very non-banky building that the BNZ was using. The bank transitioned to BoWS in 1959 with staff of the BNZ being loaned to the new bank.
One of the paragraphs that I found in one of the documents from the building’s architect cracked me up. It explains the understanding that the Samoan people had about the value of a bank in their country:
Prior to the opening of the branch in 1915 the local paper commented “An institution of this kind has long been needed in Samoa. Business people now have the opportunity of availing themselves of the many advantages a bank affords which is, we understand, to accept deposits from rich people and disburse it to poor ones, endeavouring to counteract ‘the unequal distribution of wealth’”
How many of us bank with institutions that have the disbursement of wealth to needy people in their intentions???
I truly want to express my gratitude to the people at the BNZ Archives for their work in finding me these articles!!! THANKS A MILLION!!!