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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Wellington Provincial District]



Waikanae is a lovely spot in which to spend an hour or two during the intervals of the railway time-table. Its natural attractive features consist of the sunny sloping uplands, its river meandering through the evergreen, well-wooded lands of the lower country, and its occasional precipitous rocks. Away out through an open glade the crown of Kapiti half fills the sky, whilst on very clear days the sugar-loafed apex of lofty Mount Egmont is sometimes seen from the vantage ground of Waikanae, which is 102 feet above sea level, and distant from Wellington thirty-seven miles.

Waikanae has no hotel, but fairly good accommodation may be obtained at the one local store hard by the railway station.

Mails for Waikanae close daily at Wellington at 6 a.m., arriving at Waikanae at 9.15 a.m. The return mail closes daily at 9.40 a.m., arriving at Wellington at 1 p.m.

Hall, George E., Storekeeper, Waikanae. Born at Bedford, England, in 1851, Mr. Hall arrived in Melbourne in 1872, but after eighteen months in that city, came to New Zealand. Settling on the West Coast, he engaged in the business of store-keeping at Greymouth, but sold out in 1893 and took the Club Hotel, Greymouth, which he conducted for nine months. Two years ago he sold out of the hotel and bought the business of Mr. Cruickshank, storekeeper, Waikanae, which he has carried on successfully since that date. For fourteen years Mr. Hall was secretary of the Greymouth Lodge of Oddfellows. He is also a Mason and a Druid.

The Waikanae Steam Sawmills (Norman Campbell, proprietor), Waikanae. The mills are situated within a stone's throw of the Railway Station. Mr. Campbell, who is a native of Auckland, has been in this business for fourteen years, and employs upwards of thirty hands. It is estimated that there are at least 30,000,000 feet of first-class building timber yet to be cut out at these mills.

Field, Henry Augustus, J.P., Sheepfarmer, Arapawaiti, Waikanae. A surveyor by profession, Mr. Field was born in Wanganui, where he was educated. He has always lived in the country, and has seen a great deal of the Maoris, acquiring a good knowledge of native affairs and a thorough mastery of their language. He has been a licensed native interpreter for about eight years. In 1878 Mr. Field acquired the farm of 1000 acres which he now works, and which supports 1500 sheep. In local politics he is a member of the Hutt County Council, to which he was elected in 1893. Mr. Field was appointed a Justice of the Peace in page 1086


page 1087 1896. At the general election of 1896 he contested the Otaki seat for the House of Representatives against Dr. Newman, and was returned by a substantial majority. As member for that electoral district he is referred to on page 1091 of this volume. Mr. Field was married in 1878 to a daughter of Mr. Thomas Wilson, of Waikanae, settler.

Wiremu Parata, Farmer, Waikanae. A native chief, Mr. Wi Parata was born in 1834 at Kapiti, and is of the Ngatitoa-Ngatiawa tribe. Descended from a powerful and warlike tribe on his mother's side, while he claims to be the grandson of an Englishman named Stubbs, who arrived off Kapiti in the early thirties, he is a man of great influence among his own people, and owns about 6000 acres of rich land at Waikanae, half of Kapiti, and a large block of land at Porirua. He was a member in the House of Representatives from 1870 to 1879, and was Native Minister during the Governorships of Sir George Bowen, Sir James Fergusson, and the Marquis of Normanby. He was a Justice of the Peace for ten years. In 1852 he married a daughter of Pukehi, of the Ngatiraukawa-Ngatitoa tribe, and has a family of nine. His eldest son manages all the farming operations. His fine large house at Waikanae gives evidence of much taste and natural refinement.

Mr. Wi Parata.

Mr. Wi Parata.

Hira Parata, eldest son of Mr. Wiremu Parata, was born in Otaki in August, 1852, and is a fitting representative of his father's house. He is a man of good sound common sense, keen discernment, and good judgment, and in every way capable of taking the management of the large estate of the family. His commodious house exhibits more than ordinary taste and a keen sense of the fitness of things, the best room being furnished in a very superior manner. Upon the estate, of which he is the manager and his father the owner, he has three double-furrow ploughs, reaper and mower, thrashing machine, and other machines of the latest design. In connection with the farm, the young chief dabbles largely in blood stock, not only of cattle, but horses, and has built a fine stable, replete with modern conveniences. At the time of writing (October, 1896), he has quite a number of blood horses in training. In 1876 he married a daughter of Hoani Taipura, then an M.H.R., and has one child. In 1879 his wife died.

Utanta [sic] Parata, a daughter of Mr. Wiremu Parata, is a charming Maori belle of the Waikanae district, and speaks English fluently. Like most of the native race, she has great taste and a fine ear for music.