The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts]
The Hastings Volunteer Fire Brigade was founded in the year 1886, with Mr. S. T. Tong as its first captain. The brigade has always been an efficient one, and is subsidised by the Borough Council to the extent of seventy-five pounds a year. The station is a two-storeyed wooden building, situated in Eastbourne page 448 Street, and the plant includes one steam fire engine (which pumps 700 gallons a minute), one manual engine, two hose reels, and one hose and ladder-carrier. The staff consists of twenty-four members, three messenger boys, and two engineers. Officers for the year 1906: Messrs C. Z. Brausch, captain; L. Anderson, first lieutenant; W. Keith, first foreman; and A. Liepst, chief engineer.
Mr. Charles Z. Brausch, Captain of the Hastings Volunteer Fire Brigade, was born in Saxony, Germany, on the 29th of June, 1861, was educated by private tutors, and came to New Zealand at fourteen years of age. He settled in Napier, where he, learned the building trade under Mr. J. Renouf, and afterwards worked as a journeyman for a few years in Auckland and other parts of the Colony. In 1882 Mr. Brausch removed to Hastings, where, after working as a journeyman for ten years, he started in business on his own account as a builder and contractor. He has since conducted a successful business, and has erected many important buildings. Mr. Brausch was a member of the Hastings Rifles, and has been a member of the Ancient Order of Foresters for many years.
Mr. William Keith, First Foreman of the Hastings Volunteer Fire Brigade, first joined the brigade at its formation, in 1886. Three years later he resigned, and went to Australia, where he formed and for some time was captain of a similar corps at Woodonga, Victoria. In the year 1893 he returned to Hastings, rejoined the Brigade, and was soon afterwards appointed first lieutenant. Mr. Keith went to South Africa in 1902, and on his return to New Zealand, two years later, was elected to his present position. He was born at Dufïtown, Banfïshire, Scotland, in 1863, and came to New Zealand at eleven years of age. He afterwards learned carpentry at Havelock, and for many years subsequently worked as a journeyman. Later, he conducted business on his own account for about eight months at Hastings, and in 1995 entered into partnership with Mr. Styles. Mr. Keith is a member of the Orange Lodge, and of the Ancient Order of Foresters.
Brown and Ross, photo,
Mr. W. Keith.
Brown and Ross, photo,
Mr. A. F. Liepst.
The Hastings Municipal Abattoir was established in the year 1903, and stands on a section of five and a-half acres on the northern boundary of the borough. It is a brick building with concrete foundations, and contains a slaughter room and two cooling rooms, and all the modern improvements. The killing is done by contract, the number of carcases put through in the year 1904, were: cattle, 821; calves, 48; sheep, 5,749; lambs, 556; pigs, 326.
Mr. Donald Henry Rait, M.R.C.V.S., Government Inspector of Meat at Hastings, and Manager of the Municipal Abattoir, emigrated to New Zealand in December, 1899, under engagement to the New Zealand Government. He was stationed successively at Timaru and Christchurch, before receiving his present appointment in 1904. Mr. Rait was born at Anerley, Surrey, England, on the 3rd of September, 1876, and is the second son of a former merchant in India. He was educated at the University College, London, where he matriculated, and then entered the Royal Veterinary College, where he graduated M.R.C.V.S., with honours, in 1899. Mr. Rait first visited New Zealand in the early “nineties,” when he gained some experience in colonial farm life. He is married and has three children.