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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 11, Issue 3 (June 1, 1936)

The City of Auckland

The City of Auckland.

The fourteen-year-old boy coming out by himself around the curve of the world, to join his parents, was half a sailor by the time he landed after a voyage of 84 days. The ship which brought him was the City of Auckland, one of the finest of the clippers in the beautiful sailing fleets of that maritime era. The ship was a favourite with passengers in the London-New Zealand trade, and she carried in her day thousands of immigrants to these shores. Her commander was Captain Ashby, probably the best known of all the masters in that trade when sail was in its glory. The City of Auckland was a handsomely fitted ship somewhat after the type of the carefully appointed East Indiamen. At the break of the poop were page 18 page 19 carved these appropriate lines from Campbell's “Mariners of England”:

“Her march is o'er the mountain waves,
Her home is on the deep.”

Like many another young immigrant in those square-rig passage days, the boy Massey learned many a handy way aboard ship that stood him in use in after life on the land. He learned to put his weight on a rope, to tail on to the braces sometimes at a heavy job when passengers gave the sailormen a hand. Useful knots and bends learned from an obliging sailor were often of service to a pioneer farmer. Young Massey always remembered his sea home with affection. The ship left her bones on the New Zealand coast at last; she came to grief on a leeshore, the Otaki beach, and had to be abandoned.