True Crime: Rakaia

Ever since I started writing for the Guardian and this blog, I have found myself gravitating towards the odd and unusual. If you have followed us for a while, you will remember several articles about odd photos, weird crimes and unusual occurrences involving some very unique personalities. Many of the lives we’ve talked about have... Continue Reading →

Knights of the Merope

Spending months at sea aboard merchant ships was an ordeal for many – death and sickness often marred such voyages, but the story of Henry Knight and his family’s journey aboard the clipper Merope in 1879 shows a more hopeful side of the nineteenth century immigrant experience.

Spreading the Word

As time went on, the world benefited from rapid advances in the typesetting and printing sectors – Ashburton included. In the early days of New Zealand’s European settlement, it was a sign of progress and advancement to have a local newspaper in your town – sometimes more than one!

Feats of endurance – Early Ashburton District history

Once again I have found myself enthralled by tales of Ashburton’s past, as told by Alex Hewson in his Once again I have found myself enthralled by tales of Ashburton’s past, as told by Alex Hewson in his 1918 reminisces, as well as Mary Anne Barker’s brief description of crossing the Ashburton River.

No job too tough

While conducting some research for a member of the public, Senior Curator Maryann Cowan discovered the exciting legacy of yet another interesting Ashburtonian – that of Mr. James Russell Richardson.

A Grand Diversion

New Zealand suffered from mass unemployment and riots as economic despair gripped the country, but for a portion of those looking for work, the solution came in the form of work relief schemes.

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