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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Otago & Southland Provincial Districts]

Braithwaite, Joseph

Braithwaite, Joseph , Wholesale and Retail Bookseller, Stationer and Fancy Goods Dealer, Braithwaite's Book Arcade, 38 Princes Street, Dunedin; Private residence, Dallon Bank, York Place. Mr. Braithwaite was born in England in 1848, and belongs to a very old English family. He left the Old Country with his parents for Melbourne in 1852, the voyage being saddened by the death of his mother at sea. He was educated at Colonel Templeton's school, Collingwood, and was termed the “aptest boy in the school.” In 1860 he arrived in Dunedin, and for a short time attended the school conducted by Mr. Livingstone in a building that then existed where Messrs. Sargood, Son and Ewen's premises now stand in High Street. The death of his father at this period left him a lad of fifteen to fight the world alone. He started, however, in business as a bookseller in a shop about 12 feet by 12, in Farley's Arcade, then the only convenient spot in Dunedin where people could congregate and gossip and purchase their requirements. The business grew apace and necessitated removal to larger premises at the corner of the Arcade and High Street, where Mr. Braithwaite remained for fully twenty years, when the transfer to Princes Street was made. Mr. Braithwaite's business expanded with the growth of the city and “Braithwaite's Book Arcade” is recognised as one of the largest and most successful of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. In newspaper controversies from time to time, Mr. Braithwaite has displayed a clear grasp of polemic and scientific questions, shewing the intellectual value of his early tuition and long connection with standard and current literature.