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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 69

First Regatta on the Waitemata

First Regatta on the Waitemata.

The first regatta which took place on the waters of the Waitemata came off on the 18th September, 1840. Three days previously the Anna Watson cast anchor in the harbour, bringing some Government officers, mechanics, and labourers to inaugurate the infant settlement of Auckland, which was selected on the 18th, and the formal ceremony of taking possession in the name of the Queen gone through on that day. So far as can be gathered from the description of the locality, the British flag was first unfurled at Soldiers' Point (old Fort Britomart), where it was greeted with a royal salute of 20 guns. The day was also commemorated by the holding of a regatta, an account of which is given in the New Zealand Advertiser and Bay of Islands Gazette September 24, 1840:—"There were three events: 1st, race between a five-oared gig belonging to the Surveyor-General and a six oared gig belonging to the Anna Watson; 2nd, match for a purse of five sovereigns between two whaleboats; 3rd, race between two large canoes paddled by natives. Among those present were:—The police magistrate, the colonial surgeon, the harbour master, superintendent of works, sub-protector of aborigines, surveyor-general and lady."