The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]
Jamieson, J. And W.
Jamieson, J. And W., (James Jamieson and William Jamieson). Builders and Contractors, 49 Colombo Street, Christchurch. This business was established by the late Mr. Samuel Jamieson in 1864, shortly after his arrival in the colony. It is amongst the oldest in Canterbury, has progressed steadily ever since its inception, and is at the present time acknowledged to be one of the leading building firms in New Zealand. Messrs J. And W. Jamieson, sons of the founder of the firm, arrived in the colony with their father. They have recently undertaken a very important contract—namely, the building of the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Christchurch, one of the architectural ornaments of the colony. In order to deal satisfactorily with so large and important an undertaking, one of the partners visited Europe to obtain the latest ideas, and a special plant for the construction of large stone work. Two powerful steam cranes, each with a lifting capacity of four tons, have been erected to facilitate the lifting of heavy masonry, some of which has to be raised 100 feet. These cranes are the first to be used in New Zealand in this connection; they stand on platforms 50 feet above the foundations, and the jibs are 75 feet long. The firm has recently obtained letters patent for a stone-planing and moulding machine, which does excellent service in cutting both straight and radiated planing and moulding to any design. Of course, as owners of the sole rights for this machine, the firm is in a very advantageous position. A large horizontal saw for hard stone work has been imported by the firm from Aberdeen, Scotland. Another noteworthy article in the firm's plant is a very large lathe for turning huge interior columns; and, besides a circular saw for stone-cutting, the firm has two large handcranes with a lifting capacity of seven tons each. Whilst the contractors were building the cathedral, blocks of stone weighing from one to six tons were lifted by these cranes and placed in one of the various machines, or in position under the masons' shed, where about forty or fifty men were employed in dressing the stone for the edifice. A fourteen horse-power portable steam engine provides the power for working the stone-cutting machines. Messrs J. and W. Jamieson's headquarters in Colombo Street occupy about an acre and a half, and comprise the office, the workshop, and a large timber yard, where wood is stowed and seasoned for the various works undertaken by the firm. The Messrs Jamieson have built a number of froezing works in various parts of the colony, notably those at Belfast, Wanganui, and Fairfield; the works at Fairfield are ranked amongst the largest and most complete in the colony. They have also built the fellmongery at Belfast and the Christchurch City Abattoirs. Amongst the numerous other contracts carried out by them may be mentioned Messrs Bing, Harris and Co.'s warehouse; the restoration and additions to the Sunnyside Asytum after the fire; a number of large grain sheds in Lyttelton and Christchurch; the Christchurch “Press” Company's offices; Messrs Morrow and Bassett's new premises; Captain R. Heaion Rhodes' house, “Otahuna,” Tai Tapu, one of the largest private residences in or around Christchurch; Mr. Struthers' house; additions to Mr G. G. Stead's house at “Strowan,” and Mr. Waymouth's residence at Fendalton.