Death On The Bridle Path

“…unusual fatigue, to which, in his praiseworthy endeavors to find a suitable spot on which to locate his family, the deceased had exposed himself…”     The Lyttelton Times    January 1851 John Williams was painfully aware that he, his wife Isabella and their 7 children only had a few days of grace at their first Canterbury lodgings …

‘Honest John’ Cordy (1805 -1886)

‘Honest John’ Cordy was manager of Homebush for the Deans from 1854 to 1859. An Englishman, he arrived in Christchurch in 1851 and ran a small run near the Bridle Path where newly arrived hoof-stock could graze before moving on when their owners were ready. On the 1st May 1854, John took over Homebush and …

Fees For Crossing The Heathcote River ~ 1850

If it wasn’t enough already to have gathered up all your worldly belongings and trudge over the Bridle Path after an exhausting 100 or so days at sea, some actually added livestock to the proceedings. If these Canterbury Association settlers were anything like Captain William B. Rhodes who brought the first ever hoof-stock to Banks …

Crawford’s Spur

“I ventured into the great speculation of buying four cows from Crawford for £60, but not till after great deliberation and timorousness. Calculating on selling the milk as we did not want ourselves…concluded the bargain with Crawford for the four cows, which being milked this evening produced seven quarts, which sold in the yard for …

“…out of that we had to make our home and live.”

“It appears that, as usual, these settlers have been deluded by having had their expectations raised to an unreasonable pitch. They appear very well pleased with the country, but evidently had been lead to expect comfortable dwelling houses and every other accommodation prepared for them”. Charles O. Torlesse (Canterbury Association Surveyor) – 5th January 1851 …

The Zig Zag – Sumner Road

As James Edward Fitzgerald sat in his over-sized dogcart while it was being transported across the Heathcote River by punt – he was feeling quite exhausted with Christchurch. He was fast approaching the end of his term as Superintendant and his health and temper would improve much due to that very fact. Beside and behind …

Bishop Henry James Chitty Harper (1804 – 1893)

Bishop Henry James Chitty Harper was the first Bishop of Canterbury. He started his religious career as the Chaplin of Eton and then was the Vicar of Stratfield Mortimer in Berkshire. It was there that he was approached by Bishop George Augustus Selwyn (who was the Bishop of New Zealand) who asked him to become …