The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]
Kowai Bush is one of the sub-districts of the Malvern road district. It is forty-eight miles north-east from Christchurch, and four miles from Springfield. The district originally formed a portion of the Mount Torlesse station, and comprises part of the low lying country at the foot of that range. It was formerly covered by a forest of fine have destroyed most of the timber, although portions still remain. Kowai Bush district extends in one direction to the Waimakariri Gorge, and therefore opens into some of the finest scenery in New Zealand. As the land stands at an altitude of over 1300 feet above sea level, the climate is invigorating, and the place is much frequented by persons in search of health, especially during the summer and autumn. Good accommodation is easily procured at the homes of some of the settlers. The first settlers, who purchased land in the bush towards the end of the fifties, were Messrs William Rodgers and Mr. Henry Williamson. These gentlemen were followed by Mr. Paul Hackett, who still resides in the district, near the banks of the Waimakariri. As settlement increased Mr. Frederick Benham erected a sawmill, which cleared the land of much of the timber, but a bush fire, accidentally lighted, destroyed a large portion, and despoiled the district of much of its beauty. The cleared land is well adapted for farming. It returns about forty bushels of oats to the acre, and yields luxuriant pasturage, fit to make the district a large contributor to the fine creamery at Annat, only three miles away. The portion of the district adjoining the Waimakariri is covered with tussock, on which sheep are fattened. Otarama, about a mile further on, on the Midland railway, is much frequented by holiday parties from Christchurch. There is a post office in the disstrict, but the nearest telegraph office is at Springfield.
Kowai Pass School is attended by about sixty children. The master is helped by an assistant mistress, Miss Agnes Menzies, who hold a C4 certificate.
Mr. James E. Glanville, Master of the Kowai Pass School, was born in Christchurch in 1872, and was educated at the East Christchurch and Normal Schools. He holds a D2 certificate. Mr. Glanville was first appointed schoolmaster at Barry's Bay, and was transferred thence to Mount Grey Downs. He was afterwards appointed to the Kowai Pass School.