Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 15, June 1971
The celebration of Auckland's Centenary reminded us of the preceding years which paved the way for "City Status". One thinks not only of the phenomenal growth of the embryo town but also of the daring adventurers who sailed so far to stake a claim in this land of the Maori. Some came empty handed, (e.g. run-away sailors) and many had already visited Australia, but there were those such as Missionaries and Traders who had something to offer in return for privilege.
Missionaries ministered not only to spiritual and mental needs, but encouraged the growing of crops (e.g. wheat, potatoes and fruit); hence many New Zealand rivers were soon lined with peach trees, the luscious fruit being free for the taking. It is not conceivable that ships which sought flax or timber would come "empty-handed" and such tools as axes became a valuable medium of exchange while animals of any kind were highly prized. This early bartering led to the establishing of regular "Trading Stations", even at strategic points inland, providing a river gave access. The stock consisted of everything from blankets and tools to biscuits and tobacco, and there is ample proof that the Traders in some cases married very happi]y and reared outstanding half-caste families.
In this issue we are including a few of our own connections with early Traders for they made an important contribution not only to our present prosperity but also to the early integration of our two races. The best of them engendered respect, just as the noblest of the Maoris won warm regard and admiration. Hence you will find that we have referred to Big Webster (Coromandel); Sir John Logan Campbell, (Auckland); A.J. Nicholas (Hikutaia, and MataMata), and Asher Cassrels (Paeroa).
For various reasons we have found it necessary to make this Journal (15) the only one for 1971. In the first place, costs are mounting, but no doubt this difficulty could be eased by raising subscriptions. Secondly, material is less readily available, and the fact remains that your Editor must confess that she is no longer able to cope with the production of two Journals per year. Yet there are still topics unrecorded and we plead for your assistance in completing the stories of people, places and events that have some bearing on our history. What may not seem to be history to-day will soon reach that category and by then fewer people will know the facts.
As many members are without Journal (1), we are reissueing a limited edition at 50 cents per copy. Would those who have finished with early back numbers and No. (9) kindly return them to us for re-distribution to people who wish to build up Sets? Some of us have had these "bound" - six copies per set - so we have printed a Content Page for each set, (1 - 6 and 7 - 12). These will be sent on request (accompanied by postage). Let us aim to complete another set 13 - 18 before the Centenary of the "Opening of Ohinemuri - 1975".
ERRATA We regret the mis-spelling of the tribe name NGATIHUA on Page 16 [corrected in: Albert John Nicholas of Hikutaia - E]
Within our Society's area there is still a fund of untrapped material in the form of anecdote, family history, building, farming, timber working, Clubs, businesses, Associations, mining personalities and operations.
The Publications Committee feels that many people would be willing to pass on their knowledge for the Journal, but are not sure whom to contact, or possibly that it is too difficult to put their memories into writing — maybe even that what they have to offer is not interesting enough – but these points can be easily overcome.
Our Committee would be pleased to be contacted by anybody who feels like this or who has a story to tell. We will arrange for someone to call on you and hear the story, take notes and write it down. Also we would be happy to submit the written article for your approval before printing it. Of course the person giving the details will receive the credit for the article. Much of the writing in the past Journals has been of extreme value for the district and for the generations still to come, and the enjoyment of past events and days, as well as the knowledge of our own district gained, makes a part of the pleasure of publishing the Journal. However, the readers are the people who have the interest of the area at heart, and therefore must have a special knowledge of it. We need your help, not only for the Journal, but to preserve the district's history. You will be doing a service to everyone if you will consent either to send an article or are willing to have your story written by someone else. Incidentally they need not be of any great length. Pictures also are most welcome.
Remember; contact any of the people whose names appear on the front page of our Journal if you feel you have something to contribute.
We have received valuable source material from several people this year and here express our appreciation to: Miss Dorothy Bagnall (Auck.) Album of snaps taken by her late father in 1905, when he and a cousin did an East Coast 300 mile horseback trip in 12 days.
Mr. Lou Rusden (Auck.) Album of old Karangahake pictures.
Mr. D. Powell (Thames Road) "Teachers' Training College Project on Komata" by Myra Powell (We shall further refer to this). 1943.
Takapuna Auctions old pictures and documents from dec. estate.