$ FREE ADMISSION

OPENING HOURS: MON - FRI 10 - 4, SAT - SUN 10 - 2.

OPENING HOURS: MON - FRI 10 - 4, SAT - SUN 10 - 2.

$ FREE ADMISSION   24 Victoria St, Cambridge , NZ

Collections

Our Cambridge Collection has changing exhibitions about Cambridge.  Much of our collection is in storage to ensure its preservation for future generations.

VIEW MORE

100 Years: 1906 Jan – Dec

January 1906

The Methodists had a Boxing Day picnic at Richard Reynolds, ‘Trecarne’ Pukekura; Presbyterians at Geo Watt’s, ‘Abergeldie’ Hautapu; Anglicans James Taylor’s, ‘Bardowie’ Hautapu. On New Year’s Eve the St Andrew’s bells rang out a parting peal to the old year and the Town Band assembled at The Fountain and welcomed in 1906.

The Salvation Army had their picnic at Mr Hogan’s property in Cambridge West on New Year’s Day. The Maungatautari Cricket Club, favoured with perfect weather and graced by the presence of a number of ladies, who kindly provided afternoon tea, could not have had a more pleasant time.

It wasn’t all play – Maungatautari farmers had no less than 1200 acres in turnips. Top of the list – Death Bros 280 acres, W Vosper 175, J Strawbridge 150 and J Scott 95.

The local Land Agent F J Marfell had 1070 acres of Moana Vale for sale. 521 acres at £10 5/-. 251 acres at £9 10/-. 297 acres at £5 13/6d.

Mr F J Brooks, manager of the BNZ for over 30 years, was presented with a handsome egg stand by members of the staff on his retirement.

The Morse family had a particularly successful day at the Oddfellows’ sports. Bert Morse won the Maiden and the Cup; Percy, William and Frank almost ran a dead heat in the Bandsmen’s race; William ran second in the Oddfellows’ race; Harry, another brother secured third place in the Friendly societies’ Handicap; Frank ran second in the Consolation, whilst Robert Morse, the father of so many fleet footed sons, also possessed plenty of ‘go’, as he romped home an easy winner in the Married Men’s Race.

Messrs Potts and Hardy, builders, were the successful tenderers for the erection of the hotel at Rangiriri.

Mr W F Buckland received six partridge Wyandotte fowls from America, all in splendid condition. This breed is fairly new to the colony and perhaps the handsomest of all the various kinds of fowl.
Among the improvements to Dr Robert’s residence was an elaborate hot and cold water service, and a septic tank on the most up-to-date scientific principles.

Mr P Forbes, secretary of the local Croquet Club, was presented with a Mallet at the first anniversary of the opening of the Club. The ladies appreciated Mr Forbes energy, patience, perseverance and cheerfulness.

A great commotion was created among the Catholic parishes of Massachusetts owing to the Bishop of Fall River prohibiting members of the church in his diocese from the waltz, polka and gallop, on the grounds of indecency.

We understand that in accordance with the wishes of the Chamber of Commerce Mr H J Greenslade, M.H.R. has written to the Government urging them to at once proceed with the erection of a new post office at Cambridge. He contends that the structure should be of brick and of a substantial and up-to-date character, in keeping with the progress of the town.

Arnold Wilkinson was charged in the local court with cycling through the streets on the evening of the 15th instant without a light. He explained he wasn’t in the habit of riding without lights but as this had been a clear night and no-one was about he rode as far as the Domain to extinguish the Borough lamps. He characterised the case as a trivial one, and complained that the police had never taken any action against the horsemen who had galloped over him.


February 1906

A certain section of the business people were strongly opposed to the saleyards being removed from Victoria Street in the centre of town, and were busy obtaining signatures with a view to protesting to the Borough Council.

Settlers, who left their sheep and fat lambs in the railway yards over night to catch the early train to the Freezing Works, complained about the marauding stray dogs. ‘Yesterday one of these hungry canine mongrels was caught in the act of worrying the sheep in the yards and his existence was promptly cut short by a bullet.’
An accident occurred on Hamilton Road late on Saturday evening. Two young men named Orr and Stevenson were galloping down the road at a furious rate. Stevenson’s horse ran into the back of a third horseman, McKay and – ‘the collision was so sudden and terrific that in a twinkling of an eye both horses and riders fell with great force on the roadway.’ Orr’s horse made a clean jump over these two but Stevenson presented a lifeless-like appearance on the ground. He was still unconscious the next morning.

To the joy of parents the various state schools in the district re-opened yesterday after the annual six weeks’ holiday.

It was decided to name the Cambridge high level bridge ‘Victoria’, a name suggested by the Independent nearly a year ago.

The annual report on the Cambridge Library showed that £59 13/1d had been spent on the newest up-to-date books. Binding and repairs to books came to £7 14/6d and repairs to the building £7 16/-. The Library Ball, organised by the ladies, had contributed to the £54 17/4d in the new building fund.

Mr E P Karl of Hamilton Road, last year exported about three ton of honey to the Home market. Fruit culture also claimed Mr Karl’s attention and he had planted the best varieties of plum, peach and nectarine. Another portion of his land was planted with gooseberries, strawberries, water-melons and tomatoes.

A party of motorists, including Mr R Hannon of Cambridge, arrived here in a large car about 7 o’clock last evening. They were reported to have made the 100 to 120 mile trip in a record time of about 3½ hours.

It was understood that Constable McNamara was the official Inspector of Weights and Measures in Cambridge – ‘But had never been supplied with the necessary appliances to test the correctness or otherwise of the various weighing contrivances.’

A bull in a bootshop created a little excitement and amusement in Victoria Street on sale day. The enraged animal, after careering wildly about the streets, rushed into Mr T J Connolly’s premises. The proprietor, however, kept cool and the unruly beast was ejected without any great trouble. A broken lamp and the disarrangement of a few pairs of watertights was the only damage.’

Mr and Mrs H G McCrea celebrated their Golden Wedding. The couple were married in Ballarat, Victoria, 14 February 1856. They landed in New Zealand in 1863 and came to Cambridge 25 years later.

Henry Brierley, an old grey haired man, returned from Mt Eden prison still suffering from the ‘tired feeling’ disease. He walked into one of the police cells and defied the constable to turn him out. Next day he was before the local J.P.’s and they imposed another sentence of three months hard labour for vagrancy.

The death occurred at ‘Bruntwood’ of a young man named Harold Clark, aged 19 years. He succumbed after a short illness as the result of sunstroke contracted in the harvest field.
The site for the new post office was debated – the present site ‘situated as it is at the extreme end of the town’ was particularly inconvenient and unsuited for some. To others (business people in Duke Street) it was perfectly suitable. Others felt it should be erected on the large open space occupied by the disused saleyards fronting Victoria Square. But ‘West End Chum’ pointed out with the new Victoria Bridge about to be built that the present site was the centre of town.

The Cambridge District High School Board had arranged for Mr Francis C J Cockburn to hold art classes for three months to enable teachers to receive instruction in the subject.
Percy Morse won the cycle race around Victoria, Zig Zag and Thornton Roads in 25 minutes and 15 seconds. C Hill was second in 25 minutes 40 seconds and Peter Minchin third in 27 minutes 20 seconds.


March 1906

At a Pukekura Road Board meeting Messrs Souter and Co complained that the gorse growing on the Cambridge-Ohaupo road was an eyesore to visitors they showed around the district. Richard Reynolds complained that briars growing on Souters’ Flat Park property were an annoyance to him and surrounding settlers. (People in glass houses!)

In the annual report from the Cambridge Domain Board the chairman stated that the banks of the lake had been planted with thousands of native shrubs and ferns and a choice selection of Japanese bamboos.

The site for the new post office was raised at the Cambridge Borough Council meeting. The Mayor (W F Buckland) thought, ‘The agitation to move the post office was a foolish one, and the promoters of it were standing in their own light. They should all try to pull together and work for the common good of the town.’ The post office stayed on its original site.

The Waikato Central (Cambridge) A & P Show had record entries with 535 horses, 248 cattle, 203 sheep, 56 pigs and 308 Produce etc. An increase of 242 entries over last year.

Mr Leo Garland has been appointed manager of the Wairangi creamery.

A swarm of bees invaded M E Gardner and Sons store and made matters rather lively and uncomfortable for the staff.

A runaway created a sensation in Duke Street as a frisky horse bolted. The driver of the trap, Mr Gash managed to jump clear and the horse was brought to a standstill on Hamilton Road.

Mr Ronayne, General Manager of Railways, and his inspection party arrived in Cambridge and took time to stroll around the Lake Domain.

At the Piako County Council meeting Foreman Mahood was instructed to conduct the Telegraph Department official over the Cambridge-Napier Road in order to point out which telegraph poles the Council wanted shifted as near the edge of the road as possible.

Foreman H Bell was elected Captain of the local Fire Brigade and Fireman A Harris was promoted to Foreman.

The tender from a party of Maungatautari Maori was accepted by the Fencourt Drainage Board to clean out and deepen about a mile and 33 chain of drain to the west of Victoria Road.

The bachelors of Maungatautari gave an excellent social in the schoolroom with about thirty couples present. The refreshments were dainty and abundant, although by a strange coincidence the industrious school master, burning unsightly fern in the gully near the school, destroyed an important part of the refreshments that had been put there for safety.

The gentlemen who acted as judges at the Cambridge Show were taken for a drive around the district. They visited Hautapu, ‘Broadmeadows’, Tamahere, Pukerimu, Monavale, Roto-o-Rangi and Pukekura. On the second day they visited the Te Waikato Sanatorium.

The ten motor cars running the motor reliability trial from Auckland to Taupo and back, a distance of 400 miles, arrived in Cambridge on 9 March 1906. There were four Daracqs, two Cadillacs and one each Rover, Steam Car, Oldsmobile and Leyland.

The party returned to Cambridge from Taupo on the evening of 12 March then left the following morning to return to Auckland. Eight of the cars arrived in time – Mr Arthur Cleave in his Daracq first, G Henning in his Rover second and W L Luxford in his Cadillac third.

The Primitive Methodists held a public meeting and were encouraged by the other religions to start a church in Cambridge. The Primitives liken the people unto so many fish, some requiring different bait to others; some were as slippery as eels, others were as flat as flounders, and others again resembled another acquatic species, being ‘all jaw’.

About 100 people left on the excursion train from Cambridge to the Ngaruawahia regatta. When the train returned two small boys, who had strayed from their guardians, found they had landed in a strange place with strange people. The youngest boy, aged about four or five years, set up a heart-breaking wail and would not be comforted. Mr Charles Jarrett came to his rescue and accompanied him back to the Frankton Junction. The other lad stayed with Mrs McVeagh until the Monday train.

Dr James Reid of Wellington acted as locum tenems for Dr Roberts while the latter was on a tour abroad. And because of poor health, Dr F T Butler sold his practice to Dr H A Edmonds who was formerly of Guy’s Hospital of London.

The contract for the Victoria Bridge was let to the United States Steel Products Export Company and Mr J E Fulton (engineer) was authorised to sign any necessary documents for the Cambridge Borough Council in America.

The local Magistrate was rather busy. Charles Boyce senior was charged with assaulting George Hall by striking him with his fist. Boyce contended that Hall had made disparaging remarks about his family who were taking part in a performance at the Alexandra Hall.

Anton Manson was charged with failing to give his shop assistant, Jeannie Ormiston the weekly half holiday as required by the Shops and Offices Act.
Donald Clements was charged with being drunk whilst in charge of a horse.

Both James Sinclair, licensee of the Masonic and J Gallagher, licensee of the Criterion were charged with allowing their cows to roam the streets at night.

The Presbyterians built a new ten-roomed manse on the section next to the old one in Alpha Street. Mr G W Allsopp was the architect, Mr F A Marcroft the builder, Wilkinsons did the plumbing and Mr A Curtain the painting.


April 1906

The Fencourt Drainage Works wanted immediately an Elderly Man as Camp Cook; no baking. Also a few good spade and shovel men.

Wm Crabtree (the local House and Land Agent) had a six-room cottage to rent for 8 shillings a week and 2 five-room cottages for 7 shillings a week.

NZ Loan and Mercantile had a successful sale on account of Mr A Batty of Pukekura with his best cows selling from £5 15s to £8 2s 6d. Mr A Cubis’ sale at Pukerimu was also well attended with his dairy cows selling from £6 10s to £8 15s.

Edward Leydon, auctioneer was in town – ‘Owing to a concatenation of Circumstances, and goods being Inadvertently consigned to Cambridge, I am compelled to remain this week, when all goods will be sold Without the Slightest Reserve.’

The cricketers of Maungatautari wound up the season with a social in the schoolroom. A lot of interest had been shown in the matches but the settlers were too busy to devote time to practice.

The matter of drainage into the Waikato River was discussed by the Auckland Acclimatisation Society. Dr Frengley, the District Health Officer modified the Hamilton plans so that effluent was diluted before reaching the river. The Society was against the scheme as other towns would probably do the same and that would harm the establishment of fish in the river.

At a meeting of the Cambridge Golf Club, Mr H Skeet (who was the original promoter of the club in 1900) was made a life member in recognition of his many services to the club.
Mr John Lundon, the newly appointed manager of the Bank of New South Wales, arrived in Cambridge on Tuesday. Mr Lea left for Pahiatua the next week.

Both James Sinclair of the Masonic Hotel and John Gallagher of the Criterion Hotel, were again charged with allowing their cows to roam at large in Duke Street. The Pukekura Road Board also referred to the problem of stray cattle and asked Mr Twidle to please fix his fences and informed him that he would be responsible for any damage his cow did to the Domain lands.

Several rabbit-shooting and deer-stalking parties met with excellent sport in the district during the Easter holidays. Visitors to Cambridge were also much impressed with the picturesque surroundings of the town.

The Primitive Methodists held a very successful picnic at Hautapu thanks to the energies of Messrs Jamieson, Beer, Simpson and Read. This was the first effort to raise money for a church in the district and a considerable sum was forthcoming.

The Cambridge Young Men’s Bible Class Society picnicked at H W Price’s property. ‘A special feature was the choice and abundant refreshments provided by the ladies.’

At the Chamber of Commerce’s monthly meeting they dealt with the dust nuisance, post office and clock tower, advertising Cambridge, HoraHora rapids, the telephone to Pukeroro and the Sanatorium, bad state of the Cambridge hotels, timber mills and technical education. It was also decided to bring to the notice of the Cambridge Road Board that the bad state of the Tauwhare Road was losing trade for Cambridge – the settlers preferring to go to Hamilton rather than use the road.

W F Buckland was re-elected Mayor of the Borough and mentioned ‘with some warmth’ that it was a merciful thing for the town that he became mayor and that the ‘Opposition’ party on the Council did not get their own way.

As the Chrysanthemum Society prepared for its fifteenth show, San Francisco was hit by a massive earthquake.

Mr G W Allsopp an Auckland engineer and architect, who drew the plans for the £25,000 Auckland hospital, was appointed to supervise the drainage scheme for Cambridge.

Complaints were made with regards to narrow escapes from accidents owing to the recklessness of young horsemen on a Saturday night – more particularly between Duke Street hill and the two bridges – and the habit of driving without lights.

Dr Coates, president of the Cambridge Golf Club opened the season expressing the hope that, “Golf would become as popular in Cambridge as it had done elsewhere, and that the coming season would be most successful.”

The census was taken on the evening of 29 April 1906 and as the Fishing season closed – the Hunting season opened.


May 1906

‘Mrs Elizabeth McKenzie, relict of the late Captain Murdoch McKenzie, passed away peacefully yesterday at the residence of her son in law (Mr R J Roberts). The deceased had been bedridden for 16 months past, and considering her advanced age her demise was expected at any moment.’

F C Bunyard, the borough engineer, reported that over the last year water consumed per head of population (1,000 basis) per day was 15.6 gallons. Total water pumped for the year was 5,710,500 gallons.

The Government engineer favoured the site of the Public Hall (corner Victoria and Duke Streets) for the new Post Office.

Mr and Mrs J Gallagher of the Criterion Hotel were given a banquet by their friends on their departure to Pukekohe. (About forty persons sat down to a repast of 25 dishes, ‘Reflecting the greatest credit on Mrs Gallagher’s able management. ‘The Chairman said that Mr and Mrs Gallagher’s hospitality was unbounded. Visitors had always been treated with the greatest kindness, and were always made to feel at home. (Hear, hear and applause.)

With the coming of the winter months, so began the Winter Socials by the St Andrews church and the Band of Hope. The men also held a Smoke Concert in the St Andrew’s schoolroom.
Mr Gow, stationmaster, reported that the Railway Department had decided that the station known as ‘Tamahere’, between Cambridge and Hamilton, would in future be called ‘Matangi’.

Mr Daniel Caley, a well-known settler of Pukerimu, sustained a fractured leg owing to a kick from a horse. Strange to say, just a year ago to the day, Mr Caley received a similar injury, being kicked by the same horse.

The Cambridge Primary School roll had fallen below 200 the previous term and they lost one of their teachers, Miss Piggott. The new term saw the roll over 200 and Miss Piggott was sorely missed. The parents asked for quarterly reports on their children; doormats would be provided ‘if the headmaster did not object’; the committee would inspect the school every month; and the grass tennis court was to be converted to sand.

A bittern, found in a dazed condition, was captured in Duke Street. It was destroyed and stuffed by Mr B Ruge who then displayed it in his window.

Mr Jared Allwill of Hautapu did quite a good trade in the manufacture of port wine. ‘This year Mr Allwill made over eleven hundred gallons, and connoisseurs are of the opinion that the quality of the wine is fully equal to that of the imported article.’

Moving the saleyards from the centre of town (where the Town Hall is today) was hotly discussed through the newspaper. The proprietor of the National Hotel would lose £500 a year in trade. The business community liked the sales in town but the yards were an eyesore and they were not happy with the unsanitary conditions. The Chamber of Commerce recommended the Carters Flat site. The Auctioneering firms preferred the Show Grounds site. The discussion at the Borough Council meeting was stormy and the subject was to be put to a public poll.

Te Waikato Sanatorium inmates were entertained by a party of vocalists and the Public Health department refused to have the telephone connected.

G W Venables resigned from the Borough Council and James Taylor was nominated by James Hally and G E Clark. C Channing Buckland put his name forward for the Buckland ‘camp’.

Mr H Jeffries, the Postmaster, reported that the Post Office at Pukerimu had re-opened and the name of the Fencourt post office was changed to Bruntwood.
Builders, Potts and Hardy of Cambridge secured the contract at £528 to build the Hamilton Baptist church.
A number of ladies took up the matter of raising funds for a new library. The Library Trustees were not inclined to make a piteous appeal to Andrew Carnegie, as citizens in adjoining towns had done.

Empire Day was observed in Cambridge on 24 May by closing the Banks and the State School. The weekly half holiday (usually taken on Wednesday) was moved to Thursday and a large number of the local Mounted Rifles competed in the Military tournament in Hamilton. This included running races and a Ladies Pea Rifle contest.

Reginald Pyke, son of late Hon. Vincent Pyke bought the Waikato Independent from the founder David Pirani, as well as Venables Printing establishment.
The census showed that Taotaoroa had increased in population from 98 in 1901 to 151.

The Waikato Hunt met at the Fencourt creamery. ‘Some capital runs took place and followers had an enjoyable day’s sport. There were a number of spills but no serious mishaps occurred. A capital chase ensued over Messrs Crisp’s, Qualtrough’s, Brown’s and Swayne’s properties, puss being eventually killed in the homestead swamp.’

W F Buckland held a public meeting to reiterate his plans of moving the Sale Yards and his support of his son for council. A resolution included – ‘That this meeting of citizens desires to express its appreciation of the Mayor’s public spiritedness and valuable services in introducing measures calculated to permanently advance the interests of the town and surrounding district.’ and ‘Commend the candidature of Mr C C Buckland to the most favourable consideration of the ratepayers.’


June 1906

‘It is worthy to note that the electric arc light used in the Gaumont Chronophone gives a light equal to 8000 candle power, and it requires a 10 h.p. engine to produce this tremendous light.’
Music, songs, stories and parlour games helped to while away a pleasant evening at the St Andrews’ first Winter social. There was a large attendance and refreshments were handed around at the close of the entertainment.

The Saleyards were still to the fore. The farmers did not want them moved.
Mr Mackereth said all the yards in the Old Country were situated in boroughs.
Mr J R S Richardson said it was not fair to compare the yards at Home with those out here.
Mr W McFarland: “Who is most interested in the yards; the farmers or the townspeople?”
The Chairman: “Who fills the yards with stock?”
Mr McFarland: “The townspeople have to put up with the whims of the farmer.”
Mr E N Souter: “Who keeps the town?”
Farmers (in chorus) : “The farmers.”

Little knots of people gathered in the streets and discussed the sad death of the Premier Richard Seddon. At the Post Office, District High School, Fire Station and many business premises flags were flown at half mast.

The Library Ball was well attended with all in fancy dress. Miss Williams, as a ‘Lady of the 17th Century’, won the lady’s first prize of a dressing case with comb, brush and mirror. The gentlemen’s prize went to Mr J L S Richardson who was dressed as ‘Nellie Wilson’ – a ballet dancer with short frock of pale blue with numerous underskirts trimmed with white lace, white muslin apron, long black stockings and black shoes, and a beautiful golden wig with a pink rose in it. (His prize was an ashtray and matchbox.)

The girls prize – a Ladies Companion – was won by Eva Savage as a ‘Gypsy’ and the boys prize – an inkstand – by Kenneth McDermott as ‘Cachucha’.
C C Buckland was elected to the Borough Council with 204 votes (fought on the question of moving the saleyards out of town) against James Taylor’s 193 votes.

A new attitude to teaching was in the wind and a Technical Training School was being muted. ‘No School Board of twenty years ago could foretell the exact educational tendency of to-day. Manual training does not mean carpentry and joinery. Domestic Science does not mean the art of cooking. They both mean the art of care, the importance of correctness, the necessity of ‘just right’. Mr Arnold Wilkinson and Mr A Beuth made a canvass for the proposed Manual and Technical School and raised £107.

The Chamber of Commerce received a petition signed by residents in Pukerimu, Karapiro, Ohaupo, Kaipaki, Maungatautari and Pukeroro requesting these places be connected with Cambridge by telephone.

C C Buckland (returning from America) called a meeting to form a ‘Five Thousand Club’. They met to advance Cambridge in popularity and progress so that in ten years time the population would be 5000. Advertising with booklets and postcards and up to date accommodation were suggested to attract the tourist and keep Cambridge’s name to the fore.

Mr T E Pearson from Rotorua, (head gardener for the Tourist Department) reported that the Cambridge Domain had the best specimens of deciduous trees he had seen in the Colony. He suggested planting copper beech, scarlet oak and silver birch on the bank under the railway. He also suggested planting native trees and ferns beneath the trees and make a miniature native bush. As for the lake he said, “This is one of the finest sanctuaries for acclimatising water fowl in the Auckland Province. The large quantity of raupo growing would give excellent cover for breeding.” He also suggested that boats be kept off the lake and those with a boating inclination could use the Waikato River.

H Vandyke, in a letter to the Editor pointed out that recently many trees had been cut down to let more light and warmth onto the lower walks and the expense of more trees may not be what the residents want. Leaving the rushes for breeding water fowl as opposed to clearing them for local boaties had to be argued as ‘the Waikato River is too uncanny and treacherous for the majority.’


July 1906

Wanted – Cook and Housemaid; wages 12 shillings and 10 shillings.
For Sale – Quiet Horse (cheap) fit for lady to drive.
For Sale – Fine little Dairy farm £10 7s 6d per acre. Over 100 acres in good grass.
For Sale Desirable Stock Farm £3 15s per acre. Creamery and school 8½ miles.

The Boer war trophies in the shape of Martini-Henry and Mauser rifles went on display in the glass case in the Public Library.

The partridges that Richard Reynolds liberated eighteen months previously, had been seen in two or three places in the district and were doing well.
But hawks were doing damage and the Auckland Acclimatisation Society offered 6 pence for each hawk beak brought to Mr T Hartly.

The Fire Brigade reported at its annual meeting that their call outs had been – rubbish burning close to the Council Chambers; chimney fire at Mr Clark’s residence; and a chimney fire at the National Hotel. Their annual ball had not been a financial success but a concert by Mr T Rowe added £10 12s to their bank account.

The bathing place at Moon’s Creek, on the bank of the Waikato River, was put in order. A new floor, water shoot, grating and under structure had been made by the Borough workmen. the steps had been repaired and cleaned.

A correspondent with the name ‘Pukekuraite’ said of the Cambridge library that – ‘The place used as a Library is an awful den. What a happy hunting ground it must be for the microbe. I think a pretty little town like Cambridge is worthy of a better Library and the 5000 Club could not do better than take the matter up.’

The Roto-o-Rangi road was so bad that Mr H Gibbs, the mail carrier overturned his cart in one of the large holes.

Social gatherings were well attended – the Fencourt Barn was crowded for the Anglican social and dance. Cambridge West had a concert and dance in aid of the Telephone Fund.

Waikato Farmers’ Club initiated a social to meet socially with the townspeople. Even Jupiter Pluvius smiled upon the efforts of the members of the club and a bright moonlight evening was accorded to them.

A petition was circulated protesting against the enforcing of the compulsory sanitary by-laws. (To join the sewerage system.) The petitioners thought that the pan system gave utmost satisfaction and unnecessary expenditure was being forced on the ratepayers.

The Cambridge 5000 Club wrote to the Registrar General asking him to correct the statement that Te Waikato Sanatorium was in Cambridge. The Sanatorium was on the Maungakawa Ranges seven or eight miles from the town and tourist should not alarm themselves on that score.

A violent storm hit Cambridge at 10pm and lasted half an hour. ‘The thunder was like the discharge of a canon, while the lightening was of the most vivid description, surpassing anything of the kind ever known in the district before. The down pour of hail and rain was terrific and the water channels were quickly filled to overflowing, while houses creaked and rocked and windows rattled violently. Some pine trees were splintered and the bark stripped the entire length. A willow tree was set on fire.’

‘At various times swans have been placed on the Domain Lake, but the birds have never lived long there. They have either been destroyed by malicious persons or have pined away and died. Recently a black swan took up its abode on the lake, and it will shortly have a mate, as Mr H Rowland of Hamilton, has promised to present the Domain with a full-grown white swan which he captured, after a somewhat exciting chase, on Lake Waikare at Rangiriri.’

During the week the hounds meet at Pickerings’ corner where an exceptionally large field assembled. As well as those riding, Mrs Richardson and Mrs Martyn were driving and Mrs Alan and Miss Pickering were walking. Mr and Mrs Pickering kindly provided afternoon tea and were given three hearty cheers as the group left.

The Cambridge Bowling Club had had an enjoyable year of bowls with Mr R Carr, after a hard fought game won the Champion Singles Match. The Club had a deficit of £4.
A near fatality occurred on the drainage works as a workman named Rout was buried up to his neck in a fall of sand.


August 1906

‘The firm of Messrs M V Dixon and S Lewis, solicitors of Cambridge, are about to open a branch office in Hamilton. Mr Lewis will be in charge of the Hamilton branch.’

‘A wedding of much interest took place at St Pauls Methodist church when Miss Belle Hill married H Cox. The bride wore a very pretty dress of creme silk and handsome veil with orange blossoms. The bridesmaids were Miss Bessie and Hilda Cox (sisters of the bridegroom) and wore white dresses and carried white bouquets.’

The Chamber of Commerce held its quarterly meeting and made donations of £2 2s to both the Cambridge Technical School fund and the Waikato Exhibition. Also £1 1s to the Town Band.

‘On behalf of the 5000 Club C C Buckland asked the Cambridge Borough Council for a report on the cost of making a track from the Karapiro Bridge, along the river bank to the side of the new bridge.’

The petition concerning the ‘compulsory’ clause in the new Sanitary By-Law, was presented to Council – but lost. The scheme was introduced primarily to fight the spread of disease.

Fifteen meetings every week were held by Captain and Mrs Simpson, who kept the flag flying at the Cambridge Salvation Army. Their territory included Matamata where they had eight soldiers.

Tenders were called for ‘erecting the whole of the buildings and making the necessary excavations at the gasworks site’. Andrews and Gall, the lowest tender of £972, were accepted with Mr Geo Smithies the engineer.

Representatives of local bodies, arranged by the Chamber of Commerce, met with H J Greenslade Member of the House of Representatives to discuss the requirements of the district. Signed petitions were presented for the telephone extension into Pukerimu, Kaipaki, Ohaupo, Pukeroro, Tamahere, Karapiro and Maungatautari districts. A new Post Office (with a clock tower) was needed; an increase in the railway facilities and an increased subsidy for the High Level Bridge. Cambridge wanted a mention in the Tourist Department’s advertising and a new Courthouse.

Greenslade advised that Cambridge was referred to as a place where ‘they were fighting all the while or shooting somebody’. He advised everyone to bury their differences and work together for the good of all. Even the churchgoers fuelled Cambridge’s differences. Letter to the Editor :- ‘Sir, Will you please grant me space to say a few words, regarding Sunday golf playing. Have the Golf Club no rules to prevent members from playing? Have the players no regard for the feelings of others, who pass the links on the way to different places of worship? Do they quite forget that Sunday is the Lord’s Day, and that they are breaking the fourth Commandment, “Remember the Sabbath Day to keep it Holy”. Perhaps those players would like their names to be known; at any rate I hope the club will stop the practice in future. – I am etc. Y.M.’

‘Scotchman’ in his letter to the Editor remarked, ‘I wonder whether our friend Y.M. is any more righteous and holy than we poor miserable sinners, who play golf on Sunday morning and go to church in the evening?’

About 20 gentlemen met, with John Lundon in the chair, to form a social club. This became the Cambridge Gentlemen’s Club.

Miss Ruby Skeet defeated Miss Kathleen Willis to become Waikato’s Lady Golf Champion.

The Golf Club committee met with regards to members playing on Sunday, and passed a resolution – ‘strongly disapproving of the practice and requested members to cease indulging in it in future’.

The children at the monthly Band of Hope meeting produced a lengthy programme of songs, recitations and choruses.

The newly formed ‘5000 Club’ had a hard row to hoe engendering public spiritedness, loyalty and united endeavour. They aimed for the growth in population to be 5000 by 18 June 1910.
Rev Thos Scott (formerly pastor at Trinity Presbyterian Church, Cambridge) delivered a lecture entitled ‘Sir Walter Scott’. Not on the novelist’s life but of his leading characters. The lecture was illustrated by tableaux executed by local youngsters.

Motor cars were becoming almost as numerous as stray cows. Messrs Souter and Wilkinson were the latest to import ‘one of these modern pace-eaters’.
A good floor, excellent music and a large crowd made for enjoyable entertainment by Madame Isherwood’s pupils who showed they were making good progress in the Terpsichorean art.

Waikato farmers met to discuss buying McNicol & Co’s auctioneering business and run it as a co-operative concern. Twenty farmers formed a provisional committee to negotiate a deal.
The Cambridge Court was crowded with spectators as William Francis Buckland, solicitor and Mayor of Cambridge was charged with using abusive language to George Edward Clark, in a public place. The words were, ‘You are a lot of b—– scoundrels; d—– dogs; I wouldn’t wipe my boots on you.’ (Three newspaper columns of he said ‘that’ and he said ‘this’. And in the end the Magistrate ‘Reserved Judgment’.)

Crowther and Bell had some bad luck at the Waikato Hunt meeting at Bruntwood. Harold Crowther came a cropper and ended up unconscious with nine stitches in his head. His horse (which he refused 60 guineas for the previous week) broke its neck. Then their coach collided with some overhanging trees, alarming the lady occupants.

Young Moisley put his hand in a chaff-cutter and severely injured his hand – two fingers had to be amputated by Dr Reid at the Victoria Private Hospital.

A runaway created a little sensation in Victoria Street as a pair of horses attached to Mr Semmens’ farm waggon took fright at Mr Bockeart’s motor car. They bolted from C Roberts’ butcher shop and eventually collided with the fence around the reserve in front of the National Hotel. The waggon was considerably damaged and a marvel the horses weren’t killed.

A large number of spectators took advantage of a fine afternoon to watch Maungatautari versus City (Cambridge) at Rugby on Victoria Square. Nolan Peake was far the best player on the field and made many openings for the Maungatautari backs. Jack Allen scored by the post and O’Halloran kicked a beautiful goal. For City the backs Richardson, McLean, Potts and Black were safe and the forwards were responsible for several exciting rushes. The game ended in favour of City by 6 points to Maungatautari’s 5.
They ended the day with a Dinner and Smoke Concert at the Masonic Hotel.

J H Wallace of Chille (former owner of ‘Ratanui’ estate at Taotaoroa) cabled to say he was safe and well and not a victim of the recent earthquakes in that country.


September 1906

The 5000 Club interested itself in promoting Cambridge in the Auckland Guide and by making an illustrated promotional booklet of Cambridge. It wrote to the ‘War Cry’ correcting the statements that Cambridge had two sanatoriums ‘in the town’. They also wanted the Tourist Department to know that there was trout fishing obtainable in Cambridge.

Mr and Mrs Keeley organised a ‘basket social’ at the Whitehall School in aid of the Anglican’s Curate fund. After songs, recitations, dialogues and games the ladies’ supper baskets were auctioned, and ‘among much mirth evoked spirited bidding and some high prices were realised’. After supper the floor was cleared for dancing.

Arnold Wilkinson gained entrance through a window of the Borough Chambers and rang the Engineer to inform him a fire had broken out. Full water pressure was then available for the firemen to fight the fire in Mr Manson’s bakehouse in Duke Street. Although the fire brigade was a little slow in finding the plug, they carried out their task splendidly. The bakehouse couldn’t be saved but the surrounding buildings were.

W F Buckland had an exhibition of daffodils at the Hamilton Daffodil Show with rare blooms such as ‘Duke of Bedford’ (only two grown in the colony), ‘Gloria Mundi’ and ‘Big Ben’.

The new saleyards (near the Showgrounds) were formally opened by Mayor Buckland on 7 September 1906. He said on moving the yards from the centre of town he had to consider the health and morals of the residents. As regards the site he said it was impossible to please everybody. Mr Toby Hicks interjected with, ‘You have done us a great injustice’. Buyers came from all over the Waikato and 1,200 head of cattle changed hands. The first horse fair in the new yards was held 12 September with buyers coming from all over the colony.

The 5000 Club held a working bee to form an anglers’ track from the Karapiro bridge to the site of the new bridge. And a ladies’ branch was formed as ‘the sympathy and assistance of the ladies would prove very valuable’.

Cambridge chess players – W Gow, E Veale, Trythall, Wilcox, Treadgold, Ollard, C Reid and Rathbon – travelled to Hamilton for a match and were easily beaten.

£15 was raised by the Cambridge Croquet Club at a Euchre Party and Dance.

R H Peake’s draught stallion ‘Riverford’ was again at the service of breeders for the season.

The I.O.O.F. Duke of Cambridge Lodge were making an effort to help their brethren of the San Fransicoin order. (Casualties of the earthquake.)

A site opposite Dr Edmond’s house (Cambridge Medical Centre) was purchased by the Cambridge Club and the architect was instructed to proceed with the work.

Sister Bagley, on leaving Te Waikato Sanatorium, was presented with a silver mounted chatelaine by the patients.

Professor Bates, the Texas cowboy, gave an interesting exhibition of buck jumping and lassoing bullocks at Jas Taylor’s paddock near the Showgrounds.

Alfred Devitt and James Wilson both had prohibition orders taken out against them by the police, after an assault with a sword.

Nineteen horses assembled at the old saleyards for the annual Stallion Parade. They were taken along Victoria Street to a paddock near the new saleyards where a large number of the public were assembled.

St Peter’s Fancy Fair and Art Union was a grand success. Many competitions took place and the ladies (McVeagh, Care, Dougherty, Hair, Tutschka, Wilkinson, McNamara, Lundon, Plescher) disposed of a large number of fancy items. The Band helped out with items and the pupils performed the cachuca and may-pole dance. They raised about £200.

The State Schools were enjoying Michaelmas holidays. The increase in the attendance of pupils at the Cambridge Primary to 225, entitled it to an additional teacher. (Miss McElwain was appointed.)

Walter Crisp of Fencourt produced a broccoli weighing 21 lbs, the circumference of the head being 38 inches.

Lionel Isherwood (local photographer) displayed a collection of photos taken for the International Exhibition in Christchurch. They included a number of farm scenes around Cambridge – cattle on turnips, fat sheep grazing, a choice dairy herd, monster turnips grouped in a pyramid. Also general scenes of The Bridges, The Old Mill and The Lake.

W S Brunskill also loaned part of his collection of deer heads to be displayed in the Waikato Court at the Exhibition.


October 1906

The new sanitary services By-Law No. 2 came into effect on 1 October 1906 whereby burying nightsoil within the borough was prohibited; premises within 100 feet from the sewer were required to be provided with an approved WC system; all services, other than water closets, must be ‘pan services’ as provided by the Borough; the fee for each pan service was reduced to 15 shillings per annum, payable half yearly in advance.

J Redgrave wrote to the Council asking could he and his wife be relieved from the expense of having pans as they were too feeble to work and depended on the old age pension. But no exceptions were to be made.

About fifty couples enjoyed themselves at the Town Band’s plain and fancy dress ball. The floor was first class, Mr A Shaw was an obliging MC, and a sumptuous supper was provided by the ladies.
It was reported that owing to the diversity of opinion in Cambridge regarding the site of the new Post Office, the Government decided to defer going on with the work until the residents were more unanimous in the matter.

The Mayor, W F Buckland, was taking leave overseas for four months. He mentioned at his farewell that the best means to utilise the land in Lake Street would be to build a town hall, combined with a small museum and municipal chambers.

Buckland advised his Deputy that if he occasionally gave vent to his feelings and not bottled them up it would assist him. He continued, “Tell the opposition what you think of them.” (Laughter) Councillor O’Toole said, “We might then have another court case.”

The Cambridge Dramatic Society put on two items, a comedietta ‘An Artist’s Model’ and a drama ‘A Sin Forgiven’. Both were well received.

The United States Steel Exports Products cabled to say the material for the High Level Bridge would be shipped 1 January 1907.

The secretary of the Post and Telegraph Department, Wellington, stated that the question of providing a new Post Office for Cambridge is now under consideration and will be dealt with.
The Cambridge Golf Club closed for the season.

The bad state of the Cambridge to Oxford (Tirau) road came in for criticism and Thomas Bruce (oldest settler in the Taotaoroa District) sprang to the defence of Mr G Mahood – keeper of roads for the Piako County. The bad section of the road was, apparently a recent repair that had not had time to harden.

Madame Isherwood wound-up her dancing classes with a Masquerade Ball at the Alexandra Hall. Many of the costumes worn were striking and novel and attracted a good deal of admiration. When the dancing was in full swing it presented a very picturesque scene and the light fantastic was indulged in until 3 a.m.

The Polo Season was opened with a good muster at ‘Bardowie’.

The Waikato Mounted Rifles range was opened for the season with a ladies shooting match.

Mr C S Stuart, who for many years had acted as bandmaster of the Cambridge Band, decided to resign.

Messrs G E Clark & Sons, merchants of Cambridge, admitted Mr Alfred W Gane into partnership

A novel return chess match between Cambridge and Hamilton was played by telegraph. The games started at 7 p.m. and by midnight Hamilton had won three games and Cambridge one.

The footballers of Cambridge held a smoke concert where the caps won during the season were presented to the City Seniors. Vocal, musical and other items were given throughout the evening.

The names of 26 young Cambridge Presbyterians were listed in the results of the Assembly’s Annual Sunday School Examinations for Scripture and Catechism.

The water mains were about to be laid in the north eastern part of town by the borough workmen and residents who wished to avail themselves of the water supply could have connections to suit their requirements.

The 5000 Club were concerning themselves with a new Courthouse for Cambridge, more support for the Town Band, military training, a place for swimming and resolved to donate a seat to the Domain Board.

The Band were playing at the Fountain, the Domain and in Cambridge West to raise funds to send a Quartet to the Waihi competitions.


November 1906

From 1 November 1906 postage of cards and letters in New Zealand was one penny for each 4 ozs or part thereof. A telegram was one half penny per word and for an urgent telegram one penny per word.

Both the Tennis and Bowling Clubs opened for the season at the Cambridge Domain. The Cambridge Band attended and played selections during the afternoon.
The Cambridge Borough Council purchased an Austin road grader at a cost of £55. The machine was practically new, and the Council consider they had made a good bargain.

Cambridge West (Leamington) was administered by the Pukekura Road Board. On two or three occasions it had been suggested that they be incorporated in the Cambridge Borough. At a meeting of Cambridge West householders James Keeley moved and George Hastie seconded that they form their own town district and go solely on their own.

Many of the local farmers were still discussing the proposal of buying McNicol & Co’s auctioneering company to turn it into a Farmers’ Auctioneering Company.

The Government Tourist Department placed Cambridge on their books as a place where good fishing was obtainable. As the season opened the hope was that more than last year’s thirty licences would be sold.

E B Cox of Hamilton Road writes to the paper extolling the virtues of the town’s trees – specifically a silver poplar that council decided to preserve. In the next paper F O’Toole explains that for the last twelve years the owner had fought to keep the tree from spoiling his property. ‘He has had trenches cut and the roots taken out, he has trenched the whole of his garden; and the trouble is still with him; it is at his front door and at the back; it has forced its way through the tarred pavement at the side, and it shows amongst his early potatoes in the next yard; it is to be seen pushing its way along the front street, and is at present passed the next oak and is still going.’ As Mr O’Toole said, ‘This silver poplar is a noxious weed, nothing more or less.’

A party of local residents were convinced that motoring had its drawbacks as well as its delights as they abandoned their car when ‘something went wrong with the works’. They arrived home in a trap at midnight, dusty and weary.

Cambridge people enjoyed two fine days at the Waikato A & P Show at Claudelands with Crowther & Bell running a coach with cheap fares. Taylors, Hunters and Richardsons had success with their horses; Days, Souters and Fishers with their cattle; Peakes, Goodwins and Mackereth with their sheep.

At Maungatautari there was a social and dance in aid of the piano fund. The settlers had turned over a large area of ground in preparation for the turnip season. Mr C Nickle and Mr Weir had houses built and the Maori erected a wharepuni about 55 feet long and 26 feet wide.

Two fires occurred in town and on both occasions some residents did not hear the bell. It was urged that the Borough Council hang the spare bell in the central part of the town.

The Masonic Hotel had a narrow escape from fire when a mantelpiece in the bar-parlour was set alight by – ‘rats carrying matches and igniting a nest they had made in the lining of the chimney’. [This was before the invention of safety matches.]

Mr Charles Jarrett constructed an ingenious plough for roadwork and, with his traction engine, was putting it to work on Shakespeare Street.

Mr Brown, Thomas Well’s gardener, had chrysanthemum plants to give away, on the condition that they were grown.

150 members of the Presbyterian faith sat down to tea and many more attended the annual Soiree and Concert at the Alexandra Hall. The tables were presided over by Mrs Hopkirk and Miss Taylor; Mrs Atkinson and Miss Young; Mrs H Ferguson and Mrs Christie; Mrs R J Roberts and Miss Nina Young; Mrs Watt and Miss Russell; Mrs Perkins and Miss Dean; Mrs Wallis and Miss Neal; Mrs John Fisher and Miss Wallis.

A petition to the Auckland Education Board was successful in making Taotaoroa No 1 school and Karapiro school both full time with separate teachers, from the beginning of 1907.

The new drainage system was tested by the Health Inspector Middleton, and found that of 60 gallons poured down the drain – only nine gallons came out. Serious leaks were found in most of the joints. The clerk of works handed in his notice and left town.

Misses Wells, Wright and Brooks (Bowling Club) Misses Nixon and Jeffries (Tennis Club) decided to combine on Wednesdays to make inexpensive and plain afternoon tea for both clubs.
£45 worth of new books had been placed on the shelves of the library over the previous year. A few years ago the number of casual subscribers averaged 150 per year – now there were 25. This was possibly due to the consumptive scare and the new by-laws not allowing consumptives in hotels and boarding houses.

A branch of the National Defence League was formed in Cambridge to push for defensive training of all young men. The president of the League said that their first mission was to arbitrate – but they would be able to arbitrate better if they had a properly trained army.


December 1906

A special train, with passenger carriage attached, left for the Auckland A & P Association’s show with livestock and other exhibits. A further special train would leave at 6 a.m. on Saturday and return 5:30 p.m.

The Anglicans held their third Rose Show and Fancy Fair in a marquee adjoining the Council Chambers. (in Victoria Street near the old Post Office.) ‘For many months past the Ladies’ Guild had devoted much time to the manufacture of a host of miscellaneous fancy articles and dainty nic-nacs.’ Mr M McDermott showed the champion bloom – a crimson ‘Hugh Dixon’. The church benefited by about £100.

The County Councils of Piako, Waikato and Waipa were all concerned with the unsound state of the bridge at Cambridge and strengthening was estimated at £200. The new high level bridge was on its way from America. Waikato County wanted farmers to be allowed one collie dog free of tax. Waipa County were to buy an Austen grader for £90, including two extra blades. Piako County’s foreman, H Mahood reported that all road repairs were in hand.

The Hora Hora rapids, eighteen miles from Cambridge, were becoming a popular picnic spot. Crowther & Bell’s five horse brakes took three parties through the picturesque countryside, over fair roads on Sunday.

A tremendous downpour of rain (1.1 inch) had shopkeepers out with their long brooms, sweeping back water and silt. Pedestrian traffic was interrupted as gutters and channels quickly flooded over the footpaths. But the downpour was greatly appreciated by the dairy farmers.

Mrs Whiteside took over the Baden-Powell Boarding house and renamed it ‘Lake View’. It was situated a stone’s throw from the railway station and the Domain, with excellent accommodation and a moderate tariff.

Dr and Mrs Roberts, who had been on a trip to the Old Country, returned by steamer as did Mr James Forrest and Jared Allwill.

Private Linzey Stone of the Cambridge High School Cadets, gained 27 out of 30 points in the class firing at the range. Private Clifford Allen scored 24 and Sergeant Frank Willis 23.

H W Gibbs won the three year contract for delivering mail from Cambridge to Cambridge West, Pukerimu, Kaipaki and Roto-o-rangi.

Christmas Trade Displays were promoted – F J Marfell’s Emporium had books, leather goods, silver-mounted purses, wallets etc, autograph books and photo albums, needlework, trinkets, tie and scarf boxes, correspondence folders, brush, needle and thimble cases, Japanese goods, and toys from 3 pence upwards.

Mrs Linzey’s Fancy Bazaar (open every evening until Christmas) had embossed handpainted cards in relief, photo postcards and coloured picture post cards of Cambridge. She also had nearly 3,000 books from one penny picture books to the Boys’ and Girls’ annuals.

Complaints had been received by the Borough Council about stealing flowers from the Domain and the manner in which young men scorched around the Domain on bicycles. The caretakers were authorised to catch the flower nappers and riding in the Domain was restricted to girls and ladies. Boys and men would be prosecuted.

Railway officials were having a busy time as the usual exodus of holiday makers from Cambridge to Auckland, Rotorua, Te Aroha and other places, set in.

Dux of the Cambridge District High was Doris Pilcher. Deportment prize went to Elsie Plaw, with George Vosper second.

At the Waikato Licensing Committee it was reported that the National Hotel’s new WC’s and urinals had not been commenced and many rooms needed scrimming and papering. Many alterations had been carried out at the Criterion and major work had been done to the stables and out-houses. The Masonic presented an unsightly appearance as there were bare boards and ragged paper in most rooms and the staircase was unvarnished and unpolished. The committee postponed their decision to renew the license until 16 January 1907.

Francis Hicks and J G Summers were charged in the Magistrate’s Court with driving through the streets at night without having lights on their vehicles. But as it was late and a bright moonlit night their cases were withdrawn. But Richard Clark was fined one shilling with costs of £1 8 shillings, for riding on the footpath even though the street was dug up for installing the gas mains. Five residents were charged with allowing cattle to roam uncontrolled on the streets.

All the schools broke up with prize givings, sports and picnics. Miss Willa Young received a ‘good attendance’ certificate as she had not missed a single day for eight years.