The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]
Taumutu is a native settlement about seven miles south-east from Southbridge. It lies along the shores of Lake Ellesmere, and adjoins Sedgemere. The native village from which the district takes its name is close to the lake, near its outlet to the sea. It has a very picturesque Maori church. The annual overflow of the lake takes place near the village about the month of July, when the level of the lake is highest owing to the heavy rains and floods. The waters submerge a considerable area of fine land, and an artificial opening has to be made through the heavy shingle which separates the lake from the sea. Portions of the land consist of comparatively poor sandy soil, but there are several extensive and prosperous farms in the district.