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



The first newspaper in Cambridge was The Waikato Mail, a 2d tri-weekly launched in September 1880 by Joseph Ivess with Charles Montrose as editor.

“Such interest was manifested at the publication of our first issue, that quite a crowd assembled at our office last evening, to witness the printing of our first sheet. Miss Houghton, who gracefully performed this, drew the handle, took off the sheet, and exhibited it. Mr Rhodes, of Duke Street, acted as printer's devil. Then followed a short address by Miss Houghton, expressing appreciation of the honour conferred upon her. This was greeted with enthusiastic cheers, and Mr Tom Wells, merchant, called for silence and demanded three cheers for the success of the Waikato Mail. The meeting responded with three rounds which shook the building.”

The Waikato Mail closed in 1883 but almost immediately the Waikato Gazette & Thames Valley Recorder was started by Thomas & William Wilson. They sold to G W Russell who also issued an evening paper, the Cambridge News. The Gazette lasted until 1889 and The News continued until 1893. Then James Shiner Bond started the Waikato Advocate in 1895, but after six months he moved his plant to Hamilton and bought the Waikato Times. Then came the Waikato Independent in November 1904. Issues of the Waikato Independents from 1904 to December 1949 are now on Papers Past. Below are indexes compiled by volunteers at the Cambridge Museum.  If you find something or someone of interest in these indexes, please click here to contact us quoting the index and with as much relevant detail as possible. Researched and written by Eris Parker Ref: Cambridge Museum Archives Link: National Library

Waikato Independent

Issues of the Waikato Independent for the period 1904- December 1949 are on Papers Past. You can contact us first to get a brief reference – issue date and page number – for your search.…


Waikato Advocate

James Shiner Bond started the Waikato Advocate in 1895, but after six months he moved his plant to Hamilton and bought the Waikato Times. The Cambridge Museum holds copies of the Waikato Advocate for the…


News and Theatre Courier Index of Advertisers

A free newspaper in B2 size, usually of eight pages, published by the Premier Printery, Cambridge, the News and Theatre Courier was run by V G Boulton from 1934 until he amalgamated with the Waikato…


100 Years: 1912 Jan – Dec

January 1912 F J Marfell made an important announcement to buyers of building sections in Leamington. ‘Sunnyside Estate’, near the Domain, had been subdivided into large, roomy home sites, which were being offered to the…


100 Years: 1911 Jan – Dec

January 1911 The theft of a five pound note from the residence of Mr Jas Dean of Leamington, was reported to the police. From a clue that was quickly followed by Constable McNamara, the identity…


100 Years: 1910 Jan – Dec

January 1910 The sum of £1,000 granted by Mr Carnegie for the new library came to hand at the end of 1909. The Carnegie Library was opened to the public on 3 January 1910. The…


100 Years: 1909 Jan – Dec

January 1909 A number of new books have been placed on the shelves of the local Library lately. The annual meeting of the Library subscribers will be held during the present month. The year’s operations…


100 Years: 1908 Jan – Dec

January 1908 New Zealand’s population stood at nine hundred thousand. Tourists in Cambridge were loud in their praises of our picturesque little town. The chief suggestion made was that attention should be given to the…


100 Years: 1907 Jan – Dec

January 1907 The New Year was quietly celebrated with the ringing of St Andrew’s bells and the town band playing at the fountain. Mr and Mrs Earl continued their annual custom and entertained members of…


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…


100 Years: 1905 Jan – Dec

January 1905 “The old year did not pass out without a parting sob.” It rained for three days but many people were “promenading the principle thoroughfares” on New Year’s Eve. “When the hour of midnight…


100 years: 1904 Nov – Dec

November 1904 On 15 November 1904 the first Waikato Independent rolled off the press. The Editorial stated, “It should be a means of materially assisting in the welfare and development of the town and furthering…


Cambridge: 100 years ago

Cambridge 100 Years Ago are weekly potted notes of happenings in the town and districts, taken from the Waikato Independent newspapers which are held at the Cambridge Museum. 1904: November – December 1905: January –…


A history of the Cambridge Edition

By Lesley Wyatt © If you find someone or something of interest in this history click here to contact us with as much relevant detail as possible. Our research fees are here. The Cambridge Edition…


Bond’s Almanac 1912

Bond’s Almanac was published for the districts of Waikato, Te Kuiti, Te Aroha and adjacent settlements by Charles Frederick (Fred) Bond. Fred was born in Cambridge on 5 January 1884, son of James Shiner and…