Millbrook Reserve

In 1992 in the Millbrook Reserve on Carlton Mill Road, the 350th anniversary of the Dutch explorer and first European in New Zealand waters, Abel Janszoon Tasman’s arrival at the west coast of New Zealand was acknowledged.He named his discovery ‘Staten Landt’, believing that the land was attached to South America!

The plaque is a ‘thank you’ to the people of Christchurch who welcomed the first of the Dutch immigrants of our community so warmly.

Interestingly, the engraving on this plaque shows Maori Wakas’ around Abel’s two ships – ‘Zeehaen’ and ‘Heemskerick’ in an area we now call Golden Bay – this encounter resulted in the killing of 4 of Abel’s men. As several Maori also lost their lives, Abel called the area Murderer’s Bay. So, the first encounter between New Zealander’s and the Dutch didn’t go to smoothly.

*photo taken by Annette Bulovic*

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