Margaret Morrison, a volunteer writer for the Parkes Champion Post for 32 years

WHAT A CHAMPION: 92-year-old Margaret Morrison dedicated 32 years, almost on a weekly basis, to writing the 'Looking Back' column in the Parkes Champion Post. She even kept a log book from when she first started. Photo: Christine Little
WHAT A CHAMPION: 92-year-old Margaret Morrison dedicated 32 years, almost on a weekly basis, to writing the 'Looking Back' column in the Parkes Champion Post. She even kept a log book from when she first started. Photo: Christine Little

Choosing to volunteer almost every week is a big commitment for anyone.

But what about volunteering almost every week for 32 years straight?

That's exactly what Parkes Historical Society's volunteer Margaret Morrison has done.

And the only reason stopping her from going on 33 years - and no one would blame her either - is that Margaret is 92 years old.

Margaret is the face behind the 'Looking Back' section - a brief recount of passed events, moments and occasions in three different decades recorded by the Parkes Champion Post - that appeared in the newspaper every week.

Margaret took on the special role at the Champion Post on behalf of the Historical Society in July 1987.

Almost every week since then, she made her way to the office in Court Street, sifted through newspaper archives and scribbled the dates and information down in a notepad prior to handing it over to Champion Post staff.

Her last day was February 6 and her last contribution was published on March 26, 2019.

"I don't want to stop but I have to stop because my date of birth is too long ago," she said on her final day.

"When I first started I only covered births, deaths and marriages, but it's been altered since.

"We were looking for more historical information.

"I like reading the papers, I just like doing it, I'll miss it."

Margaret first began focusing on the years 1947, 1967 and 1977. By the time she stepped down, she was writing about 1978, 1998 and 2008.

She even kept a log book of all the newspapers she read since 1987 so she didn't double up.

And there were recurring events Margaret noticed throughout these decades.

"It reminds me there were always droughts and big ones too," she said.

Margaret is a former Alectown resident who lived in the area for 26 years, raising three sons with husband Bill Morrison.

She moved to Parkes in 1987 after Bill passed away a year earlier.

Margaret began with what the Society was then called the Parkes and District Family History Group in the 1970s.

It was her close friend and former long-serving Parkes Historical Society president, Yvonne Hutton, who encouraged her to join the group.

"I had known Yvonne since I was 14 years old when I used to teach her at Sunday School at the Methodist Church, now the Parkes Uniting Church," Margaret said.

She believes it was Yvonne's initial idea to begin 'Looking Back' in the Champion Post.

Margaret was secretary for the Historical Society for several years, only stepping down from the role about four years ago because she believed it was time for someone younger to take it over.

"I'm still at the museum (Henry Parkes Museum) though, I'm still there Fridays, once a week," she said.

"I've done a lot of other bits and pieces for the Historical Society, I'm up at the museum all the time."

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