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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District]



Raglan, which lies south-east of Auckland, on the west coast, is connected with Auckland by steamer, and with Hamilton by coach. In summer the steamer makes a weekly trip, in winter it goes fortnightly; and the coach from Hamilton leaves at least twice a week, and returns next day in each case. As a scene for settlement, the county of Raglan is full of promise. The land is well fitted for farming and grazing. There are large areas of good limestone country, somewhat broken on the surface, but with rich black soil which yields very luxuriant pasturage. There are two hotels in the township, and flax-dressing and sawmilling are carried on in the district. The rivers are stocked with trout, and there is also good sea fishing. Ducks, pigeons, curlews, rabbits and pheasants abound. The scenery of the district has much that is distinctive, and includes Mount Kariori, the Waingaro Hot Springs, and the Bridal Veil Falls.

The Raglan County Council holds jurisdiction over the territory bounded on the north by the Waikato river from the heads to Ngaruawahia, thence up the course of the Waipa river to Pirongia, formerly known as Alexandria; on the south by the old confiscation line to Aotea harbour, and by the sea coast on the west. The town of Raglan was originally the county town, but the offices have recently been removed to Ngaruawahia. There are seven ridings; namely, Onewhero, Whangape, Waingaro, Te Akau, Karioi, Karamu, and Pirongia. The total ratable value of the district, exclusive of the Crown and native land, is about £340,000, and a general rate of £3/4d in the £ is struck, and £1/8th of a penny for the hospital and charitable aid. The area of the district is 824 square miles, and at the census of 1896, the population, including that for interior areas, was 1545. There were 438 holdings of one acre and upwards, and for the year 1899–1900, there were 87,524 acres in cultivation. Members of the Council for 1900–01: Messrs B. Hewitt (chairman), G. S. Whiteside, A. McKinnon, J. R. Lowry, R. C. Matthias, W. M. Bankhart, J. A. Latrobe, W. Bruce, and J. McGuirk. The Raglan County Council acts also as a harbour board for Raglan harbour, where there is a wharf about five chains long, in charge of Mr. C. Sutton, wharfinger. The Council has obtained special loans of £700 and £150 respectively for the wharf at Raglan, and £600 for the Ngaruawahia-Waipa bridge, and proposes borrowing £3000 for the Ngaruawahia-Waimai Road.

Mr. William Inglis Conradi, County Clerk, Treasurer and Engineer, was born in Melbourne, Victoria, in 1857, and is the second son of the late Capt. C. G. Conradi. He was educated in London and Edinburgh, went to sea on leaving school, and three years later landed in Dunedin from the ship “Araby Maid.” Mr. Conradi was in the Rock and Pillar district, near Clyde, trying his luck on the goldfields for two or three page 719 years, and from 1876 to 1891 was well known in Clinton, where, after working for nine months under Mr. W. G. Kerle, Resident Engineer for the Public Works Department, he inaugurated the town board and acted as secretary for nine years, and he was also secretary and treasurer of the local jockey club, and for a few years of the Oddfellows' Lodge in that settlement, where he carried on business as a land and commission agent. After residing for a short time in Hawke's Bay. Mr. Conradi settled in Raglan, and was appointed to his present position. He is also secretary of the Huntly Road Board, to which he was appointed in May, 1900. Mr. Conradi was married in 1881, to Rachel Wright Melrose, second daughter of Mr. Andrew Melrose, of Wairuna, near Clinton.