These students were photographed by Forest Service photographer John Johns in the 1950s. They are planting seeds at Golden Downs forest, south-west of Nelson, while an instructor looks on. Golden Downs began to be planted in the 1920s, and by the mid-1950s Nelson’s exotic forests were second only to the central North Island’s. One of the country’s two forestry training schools was established there in the mid-1950s, with 70 ‘woodsmen’, as the students were called. Fifth-form boys were given two years’ education in practical forestry. Alcohol and cars were forbidden – but booze was often secreted away in the scrub.
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Nelson Provincial Museum, Print Collection
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