Name: Max (Papa) Talbot
Born: Motueka, New Zealand
Mother: Caroline Hartwig
Father: Cecil Robert Talbot (Shoemaker)
Personal interests: Boating, whitebaiting, reading, cricket and tennis.
What’s your idea of heaven?
Fishing and whitebaiting
And your idea of hell?
Not having a job or something to do (that I enjoy)
Favourite junk food?
Chocolate (within reason of course!)
What would your perfect holiday be?
Fishing. Would love to make another trip up to Tutakaka!!
Catching Marline with Selwyn (my father) at Tutakaka.
Papa went to Motueka High School(which has now been replaced by a museum), and left after obtaining his 5th and 6th From Certificates. Into his sport in those late teen years, Papa made friends with RD Cooper, who was to become a deep sea skipper of the white star line. Upon his death, he left his yaught to Max in his will. An active Sailor, Papa was involved with the rescue of a shipwreck in 1925 between Picton and Wellington, rescuing a stranded boat. Papa was welcomed into Wellington Harbour - an article of this can be found in the archives of the Wellington Press.
After Papa left school, he went whitebaiting which earned him 43 pounds 17 and sixpence a week in 1924 - and has kept whitebaiting as a hobby ever since. He has whitebaited in every main river in the South Island including the Haast.
Later, Papa got a job in an office, the Anchor Shipping Company, based in Motueka, as an accounts clerk. He was there for 2 to 3 years before moving over to Colonial Mutual for a further six years - finishing up in charge of the penny type policies.
In 1929, he was forced to leave by an Australian Company - as the Business wanted to secure their life policies to tenure of employment. Many of the staff left before this policy was implemented to avoid defaulting on their current life insurance policies.
Papa met Gwennie (my Nana) in Wellington whilst working for the General Motors treasury department around 1930. In 1933, the Depression hit, and Papa lost his job.
[My Grandparents met at a dance party (!) - apparently there was competition between Gwennie and her sister Veda, to see who would be able to snap Papa up first!]
After leaving GM, Papa was offered a position as part of a whaling team heading for the South Pole, and instead took a job back in Motueka working for the Harbour board by the Harbour Master, Mr P.G. Moffat - while at this time Nana was working as a nurse in Wellington Hospital. Not long after Nana moved from Wellington to Motueka to work as a nurse/midwife, at which time she became engaged to Papa.
They were married a year later in 1934 in Wellington. Papa was now 28 years old. He had saved 300 pounds (equivalent to around $80,000 today), and used this money to start up a second hand furniture store in Nelson. Some of this furniture was supplied by his brother Graham who was a cabinet maker in Motueka - thus the birth of 'Talbot Interiors' came to be.
Papa was called up for World War II in 1940, but was graded 3 at this time due to having a wife and three children, so was never drafted. He was however trained as part of the home guard.
Did you know:
Papa's first house with Gwen was bought in Motueka opposite Trafalgar park for £1,130.00.
Talbot Interiors was operated until 1986 when taken over by Papa's eldest son Graham (my uncle). In the early years, Papa used to go out canvasing for business (spotting new houses being built etc). The business became very successful just after the war, as returning soldiers were given a £100 allowance to furnish their homes.
Papa held many parties on his yaught.
Papa can remember the last model T.
Papa bought a holiday house in Kaiteri for £2,500.00 in circa 1947 - and sold it in later years for $300,000.