The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 3, Issue 1 (May 1, 1928)
The Great South Road
The Great South Road.
The Great South Road is henceforth on our left for many miles until we reach the Waikato. The road was cut through the dense bush, with here there a clearing where settlers had taken up holdings before the war. The forest here was largely puriri, a handsome tree of spreading oak-like habit; remnants exist in many parts, shading the farmsteads. That road led over the Pukewhau range of hills, through the site of the present high-set village of Bombay—it was Williamson's Clearing in those days—and down to the Queen's Redoubt at Pokeno, General Cameron's advanced field base.
Our rail - line keeps to the plain six or eight miles to the west of the up-and-down road, which was built before the present town of Pukekohe (31 miles) was founded. Where this busy centre of the South Auckland farming country now stands was a swampy forest of white pine and puriri; the earlier settlers preferred the good slopes on the east and the undulating country on the west, about Mauku and Patumahoe. Maori and settler made life interesting for each other hereabouts towards the end of 1863.