Topic: The Taylor Violin

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The Katikati Museum holds three violins previously owned Sid and Ivy Taylor who farmed in Katikati for many years. One of the violins was handcrafted by Sid for his wife.

Sidney was born in Nottingham, United Kingdom. He was a fine singer and good at working with his hands. Ivy Mary Coleman was born in Sussex on 6 July 1903 and came out to New Zealand  for a visit with her sister Maude. They went back to England where Ivy completed nurse training and returned to New Zealand to take up nursing. In 1932 she met and married Sid instead (ref: 1932/8483). 

The couple farmed in the Waikato. They moved to Katikati in the 1930s to a farm that needed a lot of  hard work. Their daughter Cherry was born there. As well as cooking and housework, Ivy milked cows, raised calves, gardened, shot rabbits and made hay.  She rode a Velocette motorcycle and helped set up the Katikati Croquet Club.

The couple retired to Gisborne and later to Rotorua, where Ivy played the violin in the local orchestra. During the 1960s Sid sent away for tools and plans to make a violin for Ivy out of native New Zealand woods. The violin along with the instructions and tool set are in the Katikati Museum’s collection. 

Sid Taylor's violin

Sid died in 1994 and Ivy continued living in their home. At the age of 100 she moved into a Mount Maunganui rest home where she died four years later at age 104 on 11 November 2007 (ref: 2007/27996). She was cremated at Pyes Pa Crematorium on 16 November 2007.

These notes were taken from an article in the Bay of Plenty Times in 1993.

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The Taylor Violin