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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]



Makikihi is the name of one of the ridings of the Waimate county, and of a township on the main line of railway between Christchurch and Dunedin. The population of the entire riding at the census of 1901 was 632; that of the township and vicinity 112, to which should be added residents near the main road — namely, fifty-three. Makikihi has a railway station, which stands twenty-two feet above sea level, and is 113 miles from Dunedin, and seventeen from Timaru. The township also has a public school, a commodious hotel, two stores, and a blacksmith's shop. Divine service is held periodically in the school by visiting clergymen, and a Roman Catholic church was built in 1903. The Makikihi river runs to the sea to the northward of the township, and has bold sandstone terraces on its northern bank; to the southward, rich flats extend for miles. The Makikihi district includes a great deal of fine land, lying between the seaboard and the Hunter.

Makikihi Railway Station And Post Office combined dates from 1879. Besides the usual accommodation for the public and the department, there is a private grain store on the station grounds. Three trains pass each way daily, and the express stops at the station. Mails are received and despatched four times a day. The sationmaster has one assistant.

Mr. Albert Ernest Firman, Station-master and Postmaster at Makikihi, was born in Christchurch, in 1874. He entered the service in that city in 1889, and has been in charge at Makikihi since 1902.

The Makikihi Public School which, was established in 1879, has a glebe of five acres of land. The building is of wood and iron, and was erected in 1882. It contains a class room and two porches, with accommodation for seventy pupils; there are fifty-three names on the roll, and the average attendance is fifty-one. The glebe is divided into a playground, a paddock for the children's horses, and a garden for the school-house, which is of six rooms. The teacher in charge has one assistant.

Mr. Alexander Goodall, Master of Makikihi School, was born at Waitaki Plains, in 1869. He was educated at the Pukeuri school, near Oamaru, where he served a pupil-teachership of four years. After two years at the Normal Training College, Dunedin, he was stationed at Kaikori school, and was appointed to Makikihi in 1894. Mr. Goodall was married, in 1897, to a daughter of Mr. B. Battersby, of Enfield, Oamaru.

The Makikihi Roman Catholic Church was built in 1903 on a site of five acres, presented by Mr. Nicholas Quinn. It is a brick building, with accommodation for 200 worshippers, and cost £900. Services are conducted by the clergy in charge of the Waimate parish.

Makikihi Hotel (John Thomas Bourne, proprietor), Makikihi.—This is a large two-storey building, and contains two commercial rooms, bar parlours, a billiard room, dining room, and eleven bedrooms, exclusive of the accommodation needed by the family. The domestic requirements are efficiently looked after by Mrs Bourne, who shares with her husband the esteem of the local residents and the travelling public.

Mr. John Thomas Bourne, Proprietor, is a son of the late Mr. William Bourne, an old colonist of Waimate. Mr. William Bourne came from Geelong to Dunedin in 1864, and engaged in carrying produce to the Otago goldfields. In 1875 he went to Waimate, and started contracting and cropping in the district, and also engaged in carting timber, from the Waimata bush to Timaru. He afterwards started in business in Waimate in a flour mill, which he conducted for some years. Meeting with reverses he returned to Victoria, where he died from a kick from a horse in February, 1890. He left a wife and a family of two sons. Mrs Bourne survived her husband four years. Mr. J. T. Bourne was born in Geelong in 1857, and accompanied his parents to New Zealand. He was engaged in agricultural pursuits in the Waimate district for a number of years, and in March, 1897, he took over the Makikihi Hotel.


Bowker, Thomas, Farmer, Merrybrook, Makikihi. Mr. Bowker is a son of Mr. C. Bowker, of Timaru, and was born in 1882 in that place. He gained experience of country life in the Makikihi district, where he now farms 150 acres of leasehold land.

page 1054

Geddes, William, Highway Farm, Makikihi. Mr. Geddes was born in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, in 1842. He came out to New Zealand in 1866 in the ship “William Davie,” and landed at Port Chalmers. His mother, brother, and sister also came out at the same time. Mr. Geddes and his brother worked in Shag Valley for twelve years, during which he took a trip to the Old Country, via America, and returned by direct ship. In 1879 he left Shag Valley and went to Makikihi, and after working there for two years he entered into partnership with Mr. Forrest and bought a farm near Bluecliffs. This proved to be too small for their requirements, and it was sold, and the present farm bought. This farm comprises 1100 acres of good land, on which wheat yields forty bushels to the acre, and oats over sixty bushels. On the death of Mr. Forrest, in 1895, Mr. Geddes took over the whole estate. In April, 1899, he married Miss Selina Forrest, a daughter of his former partner. Mr. Geddes has been a member of the Hook school committee.

See page 1054Mr. W. Geddes.

See page 1054
Mr. W. Geddes.

Mercer, Thomas, Farmer, Makikihi. Mr. Mercer was born in Belfast, Ireland, in 1838. He was brought up as an engineer, and worked as such in the Old Country for many years. In 1865 he came out to New Zealand in the ship “Victory.” For a short period Mr. Mercer was a warder in the Lyttelton Gaol, after which he went to Bluecliffs for about twelve months. A similar period was spent at the Cave. He then went to Timaru, and worked for a time on the surf boats. He was then engaged by Mr. Teschemacher on the Otaio estate, where he worked for two years, when he bought 35 acres from Mr. Teschemacher and started farming for himself. This land he subsequently sold, and purchased 133 acres on the north side of the Makikihi river, and 278 acres, where his homestead now stands. His wheat crops average about thirty bushels per acre, and oats about sixty bushels. Mr. Mercer has been a member of the Timaru Foresters' Court, and was a member of the Hunter school committee for seven years. In 1865 he married Miss Margaret Lush, of Larne, near Belfast, and they have seven sons and five daughters.

Mr. T. Mercher.

Mr. T. Mercher.

Rodgers, John Thomas, Flaxmiller, Threshing-mill Proprietor, and Farmer, Makikihi. Mr. Rodgers was born at Elephant Hill station, on the 20th of September, 1861. He was brought up to country life in South Canterbury, and commenced as a contractor and horse dealer in 1886. In 1899 he settled in Makikihi, where he works seventy acres of land, in addition to his flaxmill and threshing mill. He puts through about six tons of green flax daily. Mr. Rodgers was married, in 1889, to a daughter of Mr. John Gibson, farmer, Claremont, and has four sons and two daughters.

Shaw, John William, Farmer. “Cardale,” Makikihi. Mr. Shaw is the eldest son of Mr. David Shaw, of Geraldine, and was born in 1863, at Lake Tekapo. He gained his experience of country life on his father's farm at Geraldine, and in 1892 began to farm on his own account at Woodbury. Two years later he removed, to Rangitata Plains, where he worked land till 1900. In that year he settled at Makikihi, where he holds 420 acres of freehold, and 218 acres of leasehold land. Mr. Shaw served two years in the Geraldine Mounted Rifles. Since settling in the Makikihi district he has been a member of the Hunter library and school committees. Mr. Shaw devotes himself chiefly to sheep-farming, and uses the Smoko sheep-shearing machine, the first in the district, which is driven by a two-and-a-half horse-power oil engine.

Burford, photo.Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Shaw.

Burford, photo.
Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Shaw.

Old Colonists.

Mr. James Gibson, sometime of Makikihi, was a native of Ireland. He came out to New Zealand in the early days with his parents, in the ship “Strathmore,” and landed at Timaru, where he worked with his father as a contractor, and was engaged in the formation of the main roads about Timaru. On his father's death he started farming in the Claremont district, where he remained about eighteen months. In 1876 he married Miss Chalmers, of Otaio. They afterwards took over the Saltwater Creek Hotel, which they relinquished in 1880, when Mr. Gibson bought a farm at Makikihi. He subsequently sold a portion of this to Mr. McGimpsey, and worked on the remainder until his death in 1886. Mrs Gibson then carried on the farm until she died on the 30th of June, 1899. Mr. Gibson left a family of three sons and two daughters.

The late Mr. and Mrs J. Gibson.

The late Mr. and Mrs J. Gibson.

Mr. Samuel Simpson Rodgers was well known as a settler in the Makikihi district. He was born in 1837 in Leicestershire. England, and came out to Lyttelton in the ship “Joseph Fletcher.” For a time he served as a shepherd at Hunter's Hills, and subsequently became a carrier. As such he owned a bullock team, which he worked between Waimate, the Hook, and the back blocks for some years. For a time he worked his team also in Otago, between Oamaru and the Cardrona diggings. Finally, Mr. Rodgers settled at Makikihi, where he engaged in farming and contracting till his departure for England in 1900. Mr. Rodgers was married. in 1880, to a daughter of the late Mr. David Lundon, of Auckland. Mrs Rodgers died in 1887, leaving six sons and three daughters.