The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 12, Issue 11 (February 1, 1938)
New Zealand Railways Honoured
New Zealand Railways Honoured.
In the New Year Honours for 1938 the General Manager of the New Zealand Railways was created a Companion of the Order of St. Michael and St. George. This distinction, conferred upon the Permanent Head of the Railway Department, must be particularly pleasing to railwaymen throughout the country, not especially on account of the individual who happens to be General Manager for the time being, but as an indication of the importance placed by the Government upon the work of the Railways, an acknowledgment of the good work done by the members composing this largest Department of State, and a recognition of the great part the Railways play and are destined to play, not only within the Dominion, but also in the affairs of the Empire.
New Zealand has been well named the Empire's farm, a title earned by right of pre-eminence in the production of those things that make for healthy and comfortable living—meat and wool, butter and cheese, fruit and honey.
If prizes were given for the countries of the British Commonwealth of Nations who supplied the Homeland with the greatest quantities of farm products, New Zealand last year would have gained first prize for butter, first prize for cheese, first prize for meat, and second prize for wool.
New Zealand's place in the affairs of Empire is thus well and truly established, and year by year her sons and daughters figure in the lists of those whom it pleases the King to honour.
The historian of the present day, and still more the historian of the future, must pay tribute to the leading part played by the national railway system in enabling this New Zealand record of primary production to be achieved, for the Railways have always been regarded as a national developmental agency and have been operated with this consideration always in view.
That the work done by the men of the Railways, their loyalty and their dependability through all the crises of recent years, should have culminated in this signal acknowledgment bestowed by Royalty upon the Permanent Head of the Department is both fitting and pleasing. It has been hailed as such by the Press of the Dominion, by leading public bodies and organisations, and by the staff of the Department, who have joined together in hearty congratulations to the General Manager of Railways, Mr. G. H. Mackley, C.M.G.