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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District]


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Karangahake is situated on the bank of the Ohinemuri river. The main road to Waihi passes through the township. On the opposite side of the river are the batteries of the New Zealand, Talisman, Woodstock, and New Zealand Crown mines. Like Waitekauri, Waihi and Waikino, Karangahake is under the jurisdiction of the Ohinemuri County Council. A street water supply has been laid on, and the township has a public hall, two hotels, and a fair number of stores and business places. Numerous coaches run daily through the township, which is situated in a gorge formed by the Ohinemuri river, the hills on each side being close and fairly high. Karangahake is five miles from Paeroa, and four miles from Waikino.



The Karangahake Fire Brigade was instituted in October, 1898, and occupies page 905 a station which is centrally situated in the town. The plant consists of the usual hose and reel appliances, and a plentiful supply of water has been laid on by the Ohinemuri County Council. The officers for 1900 were Messrs Guthrie (captain), E. S. Cock (lieutenant), and W. J. Ellis (secretary).

Lieutenant Edward Stevens Cock, of the Karangahake Fire Brigade, was born at the Thames in 1873, and was educated at Paeroa. He is the second son of Mr. F. Cock, who has long been well known as chairman of the Ohinemuri County Council and agent for the Northern Steamship Company. After being apprenticed at Paeroa to Mr. Brenan, with whom he served eight years, he joined Mr. W. Ellis in 1895, and worked with him till 1899, when he removed to Karangahake, and opened a branch for the Ohinemuri Coaching and Carriage Company. Mr. Cock is a member of the Loyal Jubilee Lodge, I.O.O.F.M.U.

The Karangahake Post Office building is situated in Main Street, and has a public office, an operating and sorting room, and a residence for the postmistress and her family. Mrs Jane Airey is postmistress.

The Karangahake Public School was originally situated at Mackaytown, but now stands on the hill overlooking the valley which holds the township. It was removed to its present site in 1890, has been twice enlarged, and has accommodation for 180 pupils; there are 245 on the roll, and the average attendance slightly exceeds 200. Three certificated teachers and one pupil teacher assist the headmaster. There is a capital playground and shelter shed.

Mr. Augustus Nixon Scott, Headmaster of the Karangahake Public School, was born near Armidale, New South Wales, in 1866. He arrived in Auckland with his parents in 1869, and was educated in Hamilton. After two years at the Auckland Training College he was stationed successively at various places, and was appointed to his present position in 1890.

The Karangahake Roman Catholic Church is a wooden building which was erected in 1898, and has seating accommodation for about two hundred persons. The Very Rev. Dean Hackett, of Paeroa, has spiritual charge, and holds services every alternate Sunday.

The Karangahake Wesleyan Church is a pretty wooden building which stands on an eminence at the Paeroa entrance to the township. It was built in 1898, and has seating accommodation for 150 worshippers. The services are supplied by the minister of the Upper Thames circuit, of which Karangahake forms a part.

The “Goldfields Advocate” (Alfred William Ellis, proprietor), Karangahake. This newspaper is a demy sheet, with six columns to a page, and is issued twice a week. It was established in 1897. The proprietor has a general jobbing plant, and undertakes ordinary printing work.

Mr. Alfred William Ellis, the Proprietor, was born at Mortlake, in Surrey, in 1856. He was educated at Westminster School, and came to Port Chalmers in the ship “Pareora.” Soon afterwards he settled in Auckland, and followed various pursuits for a number of years. Mr. Ellis settled at Karangahake in 1896, and established the “Goldfields' Advocate,” the first issue of which bears the date of the 20th of January, 1897. Mr. Ellis has been a member of the Karangahake school committee, and its secretary, since settling in the district. He was one of the prime movers in the establishment of the local fire brigade, of which he is the secretary.

Fraser, William, Chemist and Druggist, Main Road, Karangahake; principal establishment, Paeroa. The premises at this branch consist of a shop and residence in the centre of Karangahake.

Stephenson, Frederick, Chemist and Druggist, Main Road, Karangahake. Mr. Stephenson was born in Geelong, Victoria, in 1855, and was educated in Auckland. He has had twenty-eight years' experience as a chemist and druggist.

Professional, Commercial and Industrial.

Ellis, William Jackson (E. S. Cock, manager), Coachbuilder and General Blacksmith, Ohinemuri Coaching and Carriage Company's Factory, Karangahake branch. Head office, Paeroa. The Karangahake branch of this business was established in 1899. The principal establishment is referred to under Paeroa, and the manager is mentioned in connection with the Karangahake Fire Brigade.

Adams Brothers, Drapers and Importers, Karangahake. Branch at Waihi. These enterprising brothers established their present businesses early in 1892 on the first gold rush to Karangahake and Waihi, where they at once took the premier position in each locality, and have held it ever since. The three brothers were born in Auckland, where they were educated; and they learnt the drapery trade in some of the best houses in Auckland and at the Thames. They are, therefore, well versed in all the requirements of a goldfields business.

Mr. S.Adams. Mr. A. H. Adams. Mr. C. Adams. Foy Bros., photo.

Mr. S.Adams. Mr. A. H. Adams. Mr. C. Adams. Foy Bros., photo.

Johnstone, J. and Co. (James Brown Johnstone and George Fallon), Tailors, Main Street, Karangahake. Bankers, Bank of New Zealand. This business was established in 1899, and occupies premises which are centrally situated in the township.

Messrs Johnstone and Fallon.

Messrs Johnstone and Fallon.

page 906

Mr. James Brown Johnstone was born in 1874 at the Thames, where he was educated and served his apprenticeship. He worked at his trade there, too, till 1898, when he removed to Karangahake, and soon afterwards established the business now carried on by him and his partner.

Mr. George Fallon was born in 1867 at Waipipi, about forty-seven miles south-west from Auckland. He served his apprenticeship at Waimate, South Canterbury, where he worked for four years as a journeyman. Subsequently he removed to Hawke's Bay, and was successively at Hastings, Wairoa, Napier, Wanganui, Patea, Hawera, and Opunake, and he has been in Karangahake since February, 1898. Mr. Fallon joined Mr. Johnstone in the establishment of the firm. He was married, in 1896, to a daughter of Mr. E. Holthem, of Patea, and has one son and one daughter.

McCready And Davey (Hugh McCready and William Davey), Tailors, Main Road, Karangahake. This business was established in August, 1899, by Mr Davey, who was joined by Mr McCready in 1900.

Mr Hugh McCready was born in 1875, at Kawakawa, and learned his trade at Opotiki. He commenced business on his own account in 1897 at Kawakawa, but a year later he removed to Queen Street, Auckland, and settled in Karangahake in 1899. He is an old member of the Order of Oddfellows. Mr McCready was married, in 1897, to a daughter of Mr W. McDuff, of the Thames, and has one son.

Mr. William Davey was born in 1867 in Auckland, where he was educated and learned his trade. He entered into business on his own account in Auckland in 1887, and was subsequently in Gisborne, Wellington, and Napier. In 1896, he settled in Karangahake, where he managed Mr. M. J. Purcell's branch business for eighteen months, and then began on his own account.

Bracken, James Hope, Hairdresser and Tobacconist, Main Street, Karangahake. This business was established in 1897 by Mr C. Huett, who conducted it till 1899, when it was acquired by the present proprietor. Mr. Bracken was born in Victoria in 1875, and was brought up to the hairdressing trade in Ballarat, where he worked at his business till coming to Auckland in 1896. He was employed for about two years in Coromandel, whence he removed to Karangahake, where he worked for his predecessor until he himself acquired the business.

Karangahake Hotel (William Shore Montgomery, proprietor), Main Street, Karangahake. This hotel was established in 1884. The original building, which was of small dimensions, has been considerably enlarged, the foundations having been excavated to provide for a lower storey. The house contains eighteen rooms, eleven of which are bedrooms. The dining room has accommodation for about twenty guests, and there are four sitting rooms.

Bridge at Karangahake.

Bridge at Karangahake.

Mr. William Shore Montgomery, the Proprietor, who is also owner of the Waikino Hotel, which is managed by his son, was born in Lanarkshire, Scotland, in 1862. He was brought up to the hotel business, and assisted his father and mother until he left for New Zealand in 1874, by the ship “Hydaspes.” After his arrival in Auckland, Mr. Montgomery went to the Thames, where he was engaged in mining for four years. He subsequently went to Huntly, and was employed in coalmining, and he resided with his family for a number of years in that locality. After an absence of twelve months, during which he visited British Columbia and California, he returned to New Zealand, and resided for about six months at Westport, but then visited his old home in Scotland. On again returning to New Zealand Mr. Montgomery lived at Greymouth, settled in the Ohinemuri district in 1893. He and afterwards at the Bay of Islands, and became licensee of the Owharoa Hotel, which has since been removed to Waikino, and in 1897 he was licensee of the Royal George Hotel, Newmarket, Auckland, for about three months. Since the end of that year Mr. Montgomery has conducted the Karangahake Hotel. During his residence at Huntly he was a member of the local school committee. He was married, in 1871, to a daughter of the lat Mr. W. Blakely, of Lanarkshire, Scotland, and has had nine daughters and seven sons, one of his sons being dead.

Tramway Hotel (W. E. Ryan, proprietor), Karangahake. This hotel is of two stories, is built of wood, and contains thirty rooms. The large dining room has seats for twenty-five guests. There are fifteen bedrooms and four sitting rooms. The hotel was established about 1880, and has been conducted by Mr. Ryan since 1898.

Mr. William Earle Ryan, the Proprietor, was born in Victoria, in 1864, and came to New Zealand with his parents when he was two years of age. He was brought up to business as a draper and grocer in Ross and Kumara on the West Coast. In 1890 he started business on his own account in Mercury Bay, where he had for two years previously been managing for L. D. Nathan and Co., and in 1894 he removed to Auckland, where he became licensee of the Newmarket Hotel. He removed to the Rising Sun Hotel, Newton, Auckland, in 1897, and after six months on the Stock Exchange as a broker, settled in Karangahake. During his residence at Mercury Bay Mr. Ryan served for three years as a member of the Coromandel County Council, and also represented Mercury Bay on the Hospital and Charitable Aid Board for a similar period. He is a member of the Karangahake school committee. Mr. Ryan was married, in 1889, to
Mr. W. E. Ryan.

Mr. W. E. Ryan.

page 907 a daughter of Mr. John Lynch, and has three sons and one daughter.

Walters, George, Ironmonger, etc., Karangahake. Mr. George Walters is the son of Mr. John Walters, draper, of Wanganui, and was born in that town in 1868. He served his time to the ironmongery business with Messrs Dawson, of Wellington. After the expiration of his apprenticeship he spent some years in Poverty Bay, but returned to Wellington and accepted a position with the old established mercantile firm of Messrs Joseph Nathan and Co. The “rush” to the Karangahake goldfields tempted him to visit the district, and early in 1897 he started his present business, which has grown steadily, and he is now well known in the trade, and successful. Mr. Walters is a lieutenant in No. 2 Company, Ohinemuri Rifles.

Ott, Francis, Butcher, Main Street, Karangahake. Bankers, National Bank of New Zealand. Mr. Ott was born in 1875 near Invercargill, and was brought up to farming. In 1893 he removed to Hawke's Bay, and was engaged in driving and contracting for four years. He settled in the Paeroa district in 1897, and worked at his trade till 1899, when he commenced business on his own account in Karangahake. Mr. Ott is a member of the Star of Paeroa Lodge of Druids, and of the Ohinemuri Lodge of Oddfellows at Karangahake. He was married on the 11th of August, 1897, to a daughter of Mr. J. McMechan, of Paeroa.

Tetley, Joshua William, Butcher, corner of Bridge and Main Streets, Karangahake. This business, which has been conducted by the present proprietor since 1898, was established by Mr. John Kelleiher in 1892. Mr. Tetley, who is a son of Mr. F. Tetley, of the Thames, was born on that goldfield on the 3rd of September, 1870. He was brought up to the business by his father, and afterwards had five years' experience in Wellington with the Gear Meat Company. His father claims to have established the original business, which was taken over by Mr. Gear, and out of which the present successful company has been evolved. Mr. Tetley has a pig farm at Mackaytown, where he usually has at least 200 pigs in various stages of growth. He has been very successful in his business, and in the rearing of pigs, and is arranging to put down a small freezing plant on his own account. Mr. Tetley was married, in 1895, to a daughter of Mr. D. Cottie, of the Thames, and has two daughters and one son.

Vuglar, George, Butcher, Karangahake. This business was established on the 1st of March, 1900. Mr. Vulgar was born in Otahuhu, in 1880, and was brought up to the butchering business by his father, at Otahuhu. To Aroha, and Paeroa. He worked with his father till he established his present business on his own account.

Wight, Albert Edward, Butcher, Main Road, Karangahake. This is one of the oldest businesses in the district, and was established by Mr. Barrett about 1880. There are customers all over the goldfields, and the premises are well adapted for the business, in connection with which Mr. Wight employs five hands, three saddle horses and a cart. Mr. Wight was born in 1862 in East Tamaki, where he was educated at the Scotch Church School. He was brought up to country pursuits by his father, the late Mr. Robert Allen Wight, well known as a journalist and entomologist, who died in November, 1896. Mr. Wight commenced business as a butcher in Waitekauri in 1896, but sold out satisfactorily in about two years, and purchased his present business in March, 1899. He has had large experience in fat cattle, and his business is a successful one. As a Freemason he is attached to Lodge Waihi, N.Z.C. Mr. Wight married a daughter of Mr. T. Gibbons, of Onehunga, and has two sons and two daughters.

Crombie, photo.Mr. A. E. Wight.

Crombie, photo.
Mr. A. E. Wight.

Ohinemuri Coaching Company, Ltd. (M. Munro, manager), Karangahake branch, Main Street, Karangahake. The premises occupied by this company comprise a stable of twenty stalls, an office, and a waiting-room. The office serves as the Paeroa-Karangahake terminus, and as the changing place for the Waihi and Tauranga coaches. Ten coaches leave and arrive daily, and there are extra ones on Saturday. The company has a large and complete plant of buggies and saddle horses, which are available for hire at any time.

Mr. Murdoch Munro, Manager of the Ohinemuri Coaching Company at Karangahake, was born in Victoria. At an early age he accompanied his parents to Canterbury, and gained general experience on a bury, and gained general experience on a sheep station in Hawke's Bay. In 1887 he settled in Paeroa, and was for two years with Messrs Phillips and Son. Afterwards he engaged in carting and express work on his own account, till 1898, when he sold out and went to the Thames. A year later Mr. Munro returned to Karangahake, and took up the duties of his present position.

Maoris Shelling Corn.

Maoris Shelling Corn.

Mr. Alexander Hogg, Old Colonist, was born at Montrose, Scotland, in 1838, and received his education at the Montrose Academy. In 1855 he left his native land in company with his mother and grandfather, in the barque “Chatham,” bound for Auckland, the voyage taking 124 days. On arrival he was engaged as shipping clerk to the firm of Messrs, Bain, Pierce and Co., and held that page 908 position for five years. In 1860 he joined the Auckland Naval Volunteers, and took part in all their engagements in the Maori War, gaining the New Zealand Medal and a grant of land. When the Thames Goldfields were opened in 1867, Mr. Hogg started in business there as a general storekeeper. He afterwards joined the firm of Messrs. Mackay, Taipairi and Co., land agents, and was also engaged in flax-dressing. In 1870, at the time of the commercial depression, he went to the South Sea Islands, and was for two years successfully engaged in trading. Returning about the end of that time, he again started storekeeping at Karangahake, and was interested in the working of the Lamonte and Railey treatments of ores. He then took up several claims, two of which, the “Monastery” and “Abbey Priory,” are now merged in the New Zealand Crown Mines, Ltd. Mr. Hogg, who has encountered many vicissitudes during his career, has now retired from business, and resides at Karangahake.

Mr. A. Hogg.

Mr. A. Hogg.

Art Picture by J. R. Hanna.Bubbles: Young Aucklanders at Play.

Art Picture by J. R. Hanna.Bubbles: Young Aucklanders at Play.