Tuesday 17 July 2018

28 May to 3 June, 1868

Politics and progress.

Thursday, 28 May
Queen’s Birthday Public Holiday
The day of Queen Victoria’s birth is 24 May but as it fell on a Sunday this year  the government has set aside today for the commemorations.  In Auckland there is gloriously fine weather with a clear sky, a bright sun and gentle breeze from the south. There are not such large crowds of people as on previous occasions, due to the absence of so many at the Thames. Although today is pretty generally observed as a holiday with many of the business places closed, at the Thames the protection to the claim holders is not taken advantage of and the men are hard at work on the field.  At Tapu the Queen’s Birthday is celebrated by outdoor sports during the day. In front of the British Hotel substantial refreshment is provided by the landlord, Mr Sceats,  who freely welcomes everyone on the ground to partake of it.  There are quoits matches, running, jump, and sack races, hurdle races, putting the stone and a half-mile race.  Warden Baillie, who is on a visit, contributes towards the prizes which include cash, gold lockets  and gold pins. The quoits match is played for a silver watch.The sports are excellent and the attendance large. Several buildings are decorated with bunting and a considerable number of well-dressed and orderly diggers amuse themselves in various ways, winding up with a chase after a pig with a greasy tail, which culminates in a fair stand up fight between two sturdy Britons.  A ring of considerable size is speedily formed by the diggers and the combatants engage with much effort.

Queen Victoria with her grandson, Prince Christian Victor of Schleswig-Holstein,
 June 1868.

Politics are now the only talk at the Thames.  Mr Buckland’s address is looked upon interest, although he is not thought likely to get the support of either the miners or the business people. As for Mr Brackenbury, he has never displayed any special aptitude for political affairs.  The Thames is so new a place that the inhabitants can scarcely be expected to find a candidate of their own.

Building of stores at Grahamstown proceeds with accelerated speed.  There are concerns that the place will be overbuilt; the general progress is astonishing.  

Nothing very startling has happened  at Kennedy’s Bay – a large number of men have left without putting a pick in the ground, somewhat disappointed, having left good claims at Shortland and Tapu Creek.

At Tapu the Queen’s Birthday is celebrated with conviviality’s into the night. 

At Otahuhu this evening a concert and ball, to celebrate the Queen’s birthday and in aid of the Digger’s Hospital at the Thames, is held.  But due to either the great attraction of the Vice Regal ball given by the Governor or the coolness of the weather, leading settlers do not attend. The programme is excellently rendered and after the concert the hall is cleared and dancing is kept up till an early hour. There is disappointment at so small an audience, for such a worthy object as the Thames hospital deserves greater support especially as so many of Otahuhu’s young men are at the Thames. Mr Allom, conducting the proceedings, says he thinks that as country settlers are depending so much upon the success of the Thames goldfield they ought to have patronised the event.

Friday, 29 May
During the past week upwards of 1,600 oz of gold has been brought up to Auckland by the steamers Tauranga and Midge from the Thames, the Bank of New Zealand receiving 860 oz, 660 being from the Kuranui, 160 from the Long Drive and 40 in small parcels.  About 100 ozs is expected up today from the All Nation’s claim.  The Bank of Australasia has received between 700 and 800 ozs from the Middle Star, Tookey’s and other claims.  Many other claims are now crushing with very good results.

A party of miners from Shortland including Messrs Hunt, Barry and Goldsworthy, accompanied by Mr Murdoch of the Bank of New Zealand, approach  the Honorable Major Richard, Commissioner of Customs in Auckland, with a view of soliciting a reduction in the amount of duty now extracted from gold.  The deputation, who deserves the thanks of the miners of the Thames, set forth the excessive charges made and the unfairness of this compared with other gold producing localities.  The result remains to be seen.

Calendar of prisoners for trial at the Supreme Court Auckland, commencing 1st June 1868 

 John Carpenter, per ship Tory in 1847, free, English, Labourer, 46 years, single, Church of England, can neither read nor write, committed March 4, 1868, by Resident Magistrate, Shortland, for stealing from the person.

James Lawlor, per ship Bennetta, 1865, free, Irish labourer, 36 years, single, Catholic, can read and write, committed May 6, by JP, Shortland, for stealing from the person.

James Rodgers, per ship  Flying Foam, 1864, free, English, carpenter, 42, married, Church of England, can read and write, committed May 20, by Resident Magistrate, Shortland, for stealing from the person.

A building has been erected at Shortland at the corner of Pollen Street for the Union Bank of Australasia.  The building has a 28 ft frontage, the front elevation is 18 ft, and the height to the apex of the roof is 21 ft.  The building is entered by two handsome doors inside which are a passage and a lobby leading to the managers and gold buyers offices.  The smelting house is to the rear, 12 ft by 20 ft, and approached by a covered passage.  The windows and door sashes are of plate glass – the windows being surmounted by a cornice, and supported byan ornamental buttress, the front is topped by an entablature with ornamental brackets supported by Tuscan plaster.

In the commercial sector many articles of hardware are scarce, the demand for the Thames diggings having materially reduced stock.  Nails of several sizes are much needed, although there is a fair supply of all kinds now on the way from London. The need for all other kinds of goods for the Thames diggings is causing much improvement in business. Bottled beer, bacon and hams continue scarce.  The demand for coal is fully equal to supply. Candles are easier, coffee well supplied, chicory scarce, flour is expensive, Canterbury wheat is available, oats are very plentiful, malt is scarce, maize is declining in price, there is no barley offering.  Hops are in good demand but stocks are limited.  Stocks of oilmen’s stores have been replenished during the week.  Sago continues scarce, starch, salad oil and bottled fruit are all available.  Stocks of kerosene have been further increased; Linseed colzo oil is sometimes scarce.  Rice stocks are very light. The necessity of importing soap is over, first class Auckland soap is now available.  Salt is scarce and increasing in price, caustic and crystal soda are remarkably scarce and will remain so until after the arrival of a vessel from England. Several kinds of spirits are almost entirely run out of stock.  Moist sugar the market is fairly supplied with, loaf and crushed sugars are very scarce.  Good Congo teas in half chests – stocks continue heavy.  Languid sales for tobacco, cigars are somewhat scarce. Wool is now out of season and the market is depressed, none is offered.  Hides and sheepskins are available, leather –the  market is fully supplied with this, tallow – prices somewhat lower than usual.  The demand for bone dust is almost nil – the season in which it is most in demand is now over.  Dried fruit – the market is rather bare of this, there are no dried apples but currants are overstocked.  Pickled salmon is almost a drug in the market.  Starch is plentiful, pickle prices up, no jams but parcels are on their way.  Wines – all kinds fully supplied, there is a good deal of inferior sherry on the market.  Nothing but the best port is saleable right now.  

Avon for Shortland with  2,000 ft timber, 500 bricks, 15 chests tea, sundries

  Spey for Shortland with 9,000 ft timber, 3 packages sashes, sundries

DSC 29 May, 1868

Satin wood panels and maple stripes.

Saturday, 30 May
Two of the finest machines on the ground, Messrs Clarke and Kesterman’s, on the Moanataiari, have made a start and there can be little doubt of their success. Messrs Fraser and Tinne have had orders for no less than nine machines within the last three months, and Messrs Vickery and Masefield are also busily engaged in their manufacture.   A powerful four stamper battery on the Karaka creek has been completed by Messrs De Wolff.

A great number of Hamilton settlers are leaving for the Thames, if the exodus goes on as it does, labour will be dear in the Waikato next spring, but it will ultimately do much good for the district, as many of those leaving express their intention, in the event of their making a pile, to come back and settle permanently in the Waikato.

Hamilton 1860s
Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A10635

The Australasian comments with admiration “Late New Zealand intelligence enables us to congratulate our neighbours on the energy which is laying the sure foundation of an early and active prosperity to these fine islands . . . the efforts of explorers  in  several parts of Auckland province have been rewarded by the discovery of a productive field in the Thames district . . . nor is the Thames the most likely district of the North Island whose mountainous ranges are still unexplored and possibly some day may be found as auriferous as the highland of Otago or Westland . . .”

The steamer Enterprise, undergoing a complete overhaul for the winter,  is announced to resume her traffic between Auckland and Shortland on Monday.

Another new steamer for the Thames trade, the Royal Alfred, is launched from Messrs Beddoes yard on the North Shore. The Royal Alfred is a beautiful paddle steamer of much larger proportions than the Lady Bowen. She has very spacious fore and aft cabins, and roomy holds, her saloon being beautifully grained with satin wood panels and maple stripes and is fitted with stuffed cushions.  The saloon will accommodate 20 passengers.  Her boiler, which is of great power, is on the wharf at Sydney awaiting the arrival of the Prince Alfred, and may be expected at Auckland in about a fortnight.  The Royal Alfred, with a 60 hp engine, is expected to steam at 14 knots an hour.   If it had not been for the prosperity of the Thames diggings many of the steamers which are now doing a brisk trade would be idle. The Royal Alfred will be completed in about six week’s time.

The Shortland share market reports that in spite of the undoubted richness of a large portion of the ground, the supply of shares still continues in excess of demand, but prices in most cases are maintained and continue to improve.  The diggings are producing wonderful results, but money for speculative purposes is most unusually scarce. 

Sketch map of the Tapu-Creek diggings, Thames goldfield, 1867-1868. Surveyed by A. and H. Fisher Bros.
Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, NZ Map 69

The unfavourable accounts which have been received at Tapu during the past week from Kennedy's Bay have been most beneficial to the mining community, by teaching them that a bird in hand is worth two in the bush and the reward of their perseverance has been the uncovering of a number of fresh gold bearing leaders during the past week  Numbers of diggers are arriving back at Tapu reporting that they could not find the colour. There are now about 700 diggers engaged at various claims. The colour of the gold found at Tapu is better than at Shortland and worth more an ounce.  As yet no crushing machine is erected although every claim has an abundance of stone ready for the mill.

The Tapu claims generally lie high, from 10 to 12 hundred feet above sea level. The road is terrific, the first burst is a hill of about 700 feet, and by the time one has breathed freely there is another similar steep hill to encounter.  From a few straggling tents there is now the appearance of a fine township.  Where one trading vessel was sufficient now two or three are barely sufficient to maintain the demands, several are seen at anchor in the bay or moored in the creek at the same time.  The Clyde, running daily between Shortland and Tapu, affords an opportunity for Auckland visitors to go to Tapu without going in shore at Shortland.  The Clyde goes alongside, and after receiving the Tapu passengers, proceeds there without delay.  Passengers from Tapu are put on board the Tauranga which conveys them to Auckland.  The convenience to passengers is obvious, there is no risk of delay, and time is saved.   The Clyde is now established as a regular trader between Tapu and Shortland and judging from the amount of patronage she enjoys, seems to be a favourite boat, no doubt owing to her good natured and enterprising owner.

Fresh stores are being opened at Tapu as fast as the buildings can be constructed, a large quantity of timber is now on the ground, scattered here and there all over the township canvas is fast being superseded by wooden buildings.  A fresh spirit has been infused into the settlement now that machinery is being erected and very few loiterers are to be observed.  Labour is plentiful and supplies are well kept up by schooners and cutters arriving from Auckland.  Some articles have been reduced in price.  Business has been brisk and numbers of miners have laid in good supplies.   Very good accommodation is to be had at the Tapu hotels.  The cooking is undeniably agreeable.  Everything is clean and the plates are brought hot to the table.  A bright future is before this place. There are a great number of tents around the Fitzroy claim.  Building sites have been marked off on the flat, adjoining the mill site and large numbers of claims have been pegged off.  The magnifying glasses, which are so much used at Shortland, are not required at Tapu at all, as the gold is coarser, brighter and generally in greater quantities. There is much distress, however, among many of the miners, by reason of which they have been compelled to sell.  It is expected that this state of things will not last much longer, as crushing operations will soon commence and then parties will be able to carry down small quantities, and get a return sufficient to keep them in the necessaries of life, until other machines are established in their neighbourhood. The Golden Valley has succeeded on hitting the leaders of the Golden Point claim – more commonly known as Allen and Hall’s.

Joseph Cochrane and party have been working on the Mata Creek and have discovered a large body of stone bearing gold.  The spur on which the reef crops out is a continuation to the north of McIssac’s hill.  The prospectors have obtained protection for the purpose of going to Auckland to negotiate for machinery. Joseph Cochrane is the brother of the entertaining auctioneer Samuel Cochrane.  Joseph is also a favourite in Auckland, having tried auctioneering as well.  Unfortunately the collapse of the Auckland economy put an end to his ambitions and in late 1867 he had to file for bankruptcy. Joseph, an honest, genial and kindly man, made his way to Tapu and a fresh start.

NZH 29 May, 1868

 Wahapu for Shortland with 1,000 bricks.

Sunday, 31 May
At Tapu the Rev David  Bruce, Presbyterian,  preaches morning and afternoon to large and attentive congregations,  The reverend gentleman announces that it is the intention of the different churches if possible, to organise a weekly service, but this would cost money.  

Mr D Lundon, landing waiter at Shortland, writes his report for the fortnight ended 31 May. “The population of Shortland, including Puriri and Hastings, is estimated at 9,000, and the number of miner’s rights issued to date is 6,483.  The number of miner’s rights is not a fair estimate of the actual number of miners at work on the ground, for when shares are sold the parties purchasing them have to provide themselves with miner’s rights to enable them to hold their shares.  Now that the winter has set in a large number of the claims are being registered to enable parties to return to their homes for a short time, and until the necessary machinery in their immediate neighbourhood is completed.”

At Tapu this evening a meeting is held at Mr Bruce’s store to discuss collecting subscriptions towards building a Presbyterian Church.

A controversial character.

Monday, 1 June
At an early hour this morning the inhabitants and miners of the Thames are informed by placard that Hugh Carleton, member for the Bay of Islands, will address them this evening in Captain Butt’s theatre on the subject of a county separated from the province of Auckland.  Mr Carleton is coming at the invitation of the Thames Improvement Committee which to  date has obtained a mining and property registry office, had the Post Office hours of delivery conveniently altered, corresponded with the proper authorities connected with the roads, wharves and tramways, and also with the Native Lands Court. 

The Enterprise, having undergone a thorough overhaul, resumes her traffic between Auckland and Shortland today.

 Otahuhu for the Thames with 10 ton potatoes, 6 sheep and 20 packages furniture

The Day Spring claim, situated about a mile and a half up the Waiotahi creek, commences crushing today.  This claim is an example of what may be done by steady perseverance and energy.  The claim was taken up by a party of Auckland mechanics.  As soon as they struck gold, some six weeks since, they came up to Auckland, bought an engine, procured a battery of four stampers from Messrs Fraser and Tinne, and these, together with the bricks and material for erecting  their machinery, they themselves picked up from the beach, a distance of nearly two miles. 

Numerous rich leaders are said to have been struck and several payable reefs discovered at Tapu.  The news causes considerable excitement at Shortland and a rush is anticipated.

The Tauranga reaches anchorage and shortly after Mr Carleton is received by the chairman and secretary of the Thames Improvement Committee.

Punctually the doors to Captain Butt’s theatre are thrown open to the public who fill the house in a few minutes. Besides the members of the Thames Improvement Committee, Messers Buckland, Rowe, O’Keefe and other champions of the Provincial Government are seated on the platform.  The object of the meeting is to hear Mr Carleton’s opinion of local self government.  Mr Beetham, chairman, apologises for the short notice given to the miners who live outside the town. Carleton addresses the meeting at some length and offers his services towards obtaining local self government for the Shortland district and the administration of their own revenue.  He urges the miners to apply to the Assembly to separate their district from Auckland and form it into a county.  Mr Carleton’s speech is considered weak and he himself is regarded scornfully as somewhat a controversial character.  He is opposed by Mr Richard Matthews (a correspondent for the Auckland Free Press) who is violently abusive; by William Rowe, who is not much less so, and by Mr O’Keefe and Mr Buckland. 

Resolutions are put to the meeting by members of the Thames Improvement Committee. The first, that the people of the goldfields ought to have the power of administering their own revenue, being misunderstood, is lost.  One of the miners jumps on the platform and says “Boys, you did not know what you were voting,” whereupon there is a call to “put the question again.”  The chairman is of the opinion that he cannot put it again, but an even stronger resolution differently worded, is moved by Robert Graham and carried by acclamation. Several amendments are negative, or withdrawn. Resolutions are carried to petition the general assembly to constitute the Thames district into a county and that local boards be established under the provisions of a County Bill; also, that the Provincial Government should be requested not to proceed with the construction of a tramway until its utility has been recognised by the residents.

The meeting is confused and rowdy and a number of gentlemen present seem thoroughly convinced Carleton’s presence is uncalled for and his mission bunkum.  There are hisses and yells of disapproval.  Carleton wanted to persuade the people of the Bay of Islands to get out of the hands of Auckland and is perceived as having come to the Thames to do the same thing.  At the close of the meeting, the Thames Improvement Committee invites Mr Carleton to an entertainment at Butt’s hotel.  The viands and wines are of the choicest character and on a liberal scale.  Every attention is paid to the wants of the guests.  Mr Beetham, Mr Swan and Captain Butt are croupiers. Mr Carleton’s health is toasted with enthusiasm.

The steamers Midge and Tauranga arrive at Auckland tonight bringing reports of a very encouraging nature from Tapu Creek.

There is a crowded house at Auckland’s Prince of Wales theatre this evening where the talented and promising juvenile artistes  Miss Katy Foley and Master Johnny Foley are performing. They display a natural aptitude and genius, developed by careful and judicious training.  They sing comic songs, perform a nautical drama and act.  The boy is intrepid on the wire cord and rivals the most celebrated acrobats.  Katy possesses a voice whose sweetness and power are most remarkable.  He promises to become an actor or comedian of the finest quality  She is likely to take high rank as a vocalist.  She also performs on the wire cord – unrivalled by any girl of her age in the colonies.  At the conclusion of the performance two envelopes are found on the stage addressed respectively to Miss Katy and Master Foley.  Upon opening the former it is found to contain a valuable gold watch and chain, with a slip of paper on which is written “Presented to Miss Kate Foley, as a token of respect, by a few of her admirers, for her youthful talent and ability.  Auckland 1 June, 1868.”  The other envelope contains a seal skin purse containing £5 for Master Foley and a similar note.  The generous donors are unknown, but it is surmised that some of the Thames diggers are not altogether unconnected with the gifts. Mr Foley, on behalf of his children, replies with thanks.

Any amount of monkeys.

Tuesday, 2 June
The cutter Lizard sails in ballast for Shortland.  One of the hands on board, Charles Farrow, falls overboard in endeavouring to avoid a blow from the boom when jibbing, but is promptly picked up in the dinghy.  In another mishap the gear of the jib of the steamer Tauranga runs afoul of the Novelty  when starting for Shortland, and has to be cut in order to prevent damage, both to the Novelty and to the new steamer Lady Bowen, lying alongside to ship her boiler, which has recently arrived from Sydney.

Mr Foley’s Royal Menagerie Touring Company, a zoological exhibition which has lately been in Auckland, is moved to the Thames today. The animals include very fine specimens of the African lion, a lioness, a leopard, two Himalayan bears and any amount of monkeys. 

NZ Herald

Daily Southern Cross

The shareholders of the Grand Truck Claim, Waiotahi Creek, strike gold of a very heavy character.  The claim is next to the Lizard and next but one to the Great Republic, which lies almost at the junction of the Waiotahi and Karaka creeks.  The shareholders in the Grand Truck have been working their ground since January with indifferent success but as gold was being obtained in large quantities nearby they resolved to persevere.  They have now struck a gold bearing leader over three feet thick and the gold can be seen running right through the stone.

The various iron foundries in Auckland are unusually busy owing to the demand for the construction of crushing machinery at the Thames.

The continued development of the goldfields and the necessity for increased shipping traffic between Auckland and the Thames has had a beneficial effect on  ship building.  There have been two launchings of steamers during the past month.

The NZ Gazette notes that the court house, Shortland, and Allen and Halls’ store, Tapu, are now polling places for the electoral districts of Franklin.

A difficulty arises out of a case of gold stealing at the Thames, which is tried today.  The thief sold the gold to the Bank of Australasia.  The manager of the bank gave the police every assistance when enquiries were made and handed over the gold to the police that it might be identified by the prosecutor.  The gold was identified, the thief convicted and the gold was restored not to the bank – but to the original owner from whom it was stolen.  The bank manager says that this is not the usual custom in other colonies.  It is certainly a hardship that either the original owner or the bank should lose the money, but no doubt the effect of the decision will be increased caution in the purchase of gold.

The Bank of New Zealand ships, per ss Taranaki, two boxes of Thames gold containing 1797 oz, 14 dwts, 12 grs, valued at  £4,100.00.  The gold will be transhipped at Wellington on board the Panama steamer for England.

Auckland tradesmen and businessmen now regard their prospects with more hope and confidence than for many months past.  This is largely owing to the absence of commercial failures and the stimulus of the increasing productiveness and rapid development of the Thames goldfield.  Mining speculation is still carried on to a considerable extent.  Already the yield from the Thames goldfield has produced good results.  The demand for goods for home consumption is rapidly on the increase while a profitable field for the employment of surplus labour has almost entirely removed the commercial depression until recently hanging over the province.  Still the want of machinery much retards the rapid development of the goldfields and the yield of gold has been small indeed compared to their known richness. Confidence however is firmly established and machinery is being fast imported or turned out from local factories.

Firewood has become exceedingly scarce, the rates offering for freight to the Thames district inducing most of the firewood boats to place them on the line between Auckland and Shortland.  The scarcity and high price of firewood will doubtless induce many to burn coal who would not otherwise do so.

A public meeting of the electors of Franklin is held at the Governor Bowen Hotel, Thames, tonight, having been convened in the interest of Mr W C Brackenbury whose address is before the electors.  But circumstances over which he has no control have compelled him to withdraw his name from the contest against Mr Buckland.  Mr Brackenbury’s name is not on the electoral roll for the district, although with many others it was sent in for registration in due time.   It is with profound regret that he has to withdraw from the contest.

Another meeting is held  this evening in Graham's building regarding the construction of a Presbyterian church at Grahamstown.  The Rev David Bruce says that they are to consider what measures should be taken for providing religious services for the increasing community at Grahamstown and Waiotahi Flat.  One of the first matters to be considered is the securing of a place for the conducting of divine service.  The Reverend had previously secured at sale certain allotments at Grahamstown which could be held as a site for a church, but since then Mr Graham has very kindly offered another site in an equally eligible situation free of rent for 14 years and it was now for the meeting to say which of these sites should be selected.  Mr Graham’s offer is accepted and a committee appointed to decide on the best possible arrangements for holding of divine service at Grahamstown.

DSC 2 June, 1868

NZH 2 June, 1868

Wednesday, 3 June
The appalling state of the roads at both Shortland and Grahamstown provoke a distressing scene.  The streets at both places are in very bad repair, and up some of the creeks the roads are very much worse.  A few loads of sea sand on the top of the clay would greatly improve the creek roads, and give much relief to the poor horses and bullocks.  A team of ten bullocks are stuck fast in the mud and the poor things are smashed over the nose, eyes and ears until they are quite stupid.  A coloured gentleman, called 'Snowball', is chief driver and to add to the tortures of one of the bullocks he gnaws its tail between his teeth.  The sledges used for conveying the quartz are badly constructed for clay in wet weather, as the bottom pieces are too deep and too narrow and instead of sliding over the clay, they plough through it.

DSC 3 June, 1868

At Grahamstown the buildings are so irregularly placed that they look as if they have fallen from the clouds.  Dwellings are now occasionally to be seen at the very hilltops behind the Thames. 

Above the town Gibbon’s machine is going full speed while up the Waiotahi a machine, based upon the principle of the Chilean mill, with four edge runners, is being drawn by a horse. Up the Moanataiari a body of men are at work excavating a site for Smart’s Thames Crushing Company and on the flat Grahams machine is thudding away.  The Kuranui battery is going full steam, hot water being applied to the one stamper with the Berdan.  Shalder’s machine is suffering from paralysis and Ellis and Scanlan’s machine is also in a state of palsy, while Goodall’s machine is enjoying a rest.

A collection of massive machinery from the Great Barrier is accumulating at the Kuranui.  The Ballarat Star, on the Moanataiari Creek, a party of four men who have been working this claim for about five months, have sunk two shafts through very hard rock, but without finding gold bearing quartz.  Now however, when clearing a site for their tent they discover the long sought for reef within a few inches of the surface.  The claim is bounded by the Carpenters and Clyde on one side and Bendigo Independent and El Dorado claims on the other.

 Avon for Shortland with 4 horses, 2 tons hay, 1 ton maize, 4 ton flour, 1,300 bricks, 2 tons doors and sashes, 15 cases kerosene, 20 boxes candles and sundries

  Whitby for Shortland with miscellaneous cargo of stores

 Julia for Tapu Creek with a full cargo of stores

The botanic beauties of Tapu catch the eye - on the beach is one of the finest puriri trees that can be seen – it is a great ornament to the place, as well as providing good shelter from the sun and rain.   There are also at Tapu some extremely beautiful shrubs and mosses which have not been seen before in the neighbourhood of Auckland.

Auckland Supreme court 1868
Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 4-2645'

The criminal sessions of the Supreme Court at Auckland are opened today, at their new buildings, before his Honour Justice Moore who comments on the very marked increase of crime which has lately taken place.  Auckland, having “turned the corner” shows an increase of crime nearly two thirds greater then when she was most depressed.  The Thames goldfield has contributed a little to the criminal statistics of the last three months, but when the population of the district, temptation to crime and the inducements to dishonest acquisition are considered, the wonder is rather that more cases have not been sent up from there.

John Carpenter is charged with stealing 23 banknotes, value £48 and one pocket book from Peter Guilfoil at Shortland.  He is found guilty and sentenced to one years imprisonment.  James Lawlor is charged with stealing 2 oz gold, £4 and two miner’s rights, the property of Alexander Smith at Shortland.  He is sentenced to one years imprisonment.  The prisoner hands up a number of certificates testifying to his good character – the judge comments that it is lamentable to see a man with such certificates of good character in this predicament.  James Rodgers is charged with stealing a watch, chain, key and greenstone,  the property of James Rotherell, at Shortland.  He is sentenced to 18 months imprisonment with hard labour.

The Tauranga arrives in Auckland with a parcel of between 300 and 400 oz Thames gold for the Bank of New Zealand.

NZH 3 June, 1868

Croupier is a historical term for the assistant chairman at a public dinner, seated at the lower end of the table.

Many thanks to Wanda Hopkins, great granddaughter of Samuel Cochrane.

Papers Past
NZ Family & Social Heritage face book page

© Meghan Hawkes / First year on the Thames Goldfield 2017 - 2018
Please credit Meghan Hawkes/ First year on the Thames Goldfield 2017 - 2018 when re-using information from this blog.

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