Ashburton Museum through the years

The Ashburton Museum has come a long way since the Ashburton Historical Society first met on 30 October 1958. Individuals with a mutual interest in this district’s history came together with a common goal: to preserve and display materials that were deemed important to Ashburton’s past. 63 years and several Museum buildings later, the Ashburton... Continue Reading →

Gallery: Enterprising Ashburton businesses

The Ashburton District has had a long history of thriving businesses, of which there have been an impressive number and variety. Coachbuilders, factories, agents, retail stores, and many more enterprises, big and small, have played their role in supporting our local economy and communities. Let's take a look back at a selection of photographs of... Continue Reading →

Gallery: Historic houses big and small

Below you will find a selection of images from the Ashburton Museum & Historical Society Inc. collection, which showcase an interesting variety of houses from our District's past. The architectural styles, sizes, and shapes of these homes say something about the people who built them. Their ambitions, their self-perceptions, access to resources, and of course... Continue Reading →

The Components of the Humble Kiwi Villa

Throughout the closing decades of the nineteenth century, New Zealand was undergoing rapid population growth and huge urban development. Factors such as improved transportation and an influx of steam-powered woodworking equipment gave rise to a new kind of house: the iconic villa. A family sitting on the veranda of their lonely rural villa, somewhere in... Continue Reading →

Reduced to rubble: demolished buildings

Buildings come and go, this is something we are used to in Ashburton. Right now, we are going through a period of rapid change evidenced by projects such as the upcoming new Library & Civic Centre, the Kmart complex, as well as the numerous houses, outbuildings and businesses being altered and built all around the... Continue Reading →

Gallery: Eye on Methven

The Ashburton Museum’s archives and photograph collections, which are owned by the Ashburton Museum and Historical Society Inc, consist of over a century and a half’s worth of images depicting people, places and events. These collections are a treasure trove of local history. Some quite interesting photographs in our collection come from Methven, a township... Continue Reading →

Waterton: a township lost to time

When you come across the scant remains of a place like Waterton, you start to wonder what led to such a fate. The old cemetery on Grahams Road is the last inkling of this once a popular township, which fell prey to issues caused by a need for labourers elsewhere, as well as that classic... Continue Reading →

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