Ripa Island

No one needed to explain to ex-banker, now convict Jonathan Roberts, that Ripa Island had never been a place of great joy, even in the decades before he and his 39 other convict buddies found themselves there, breaking rocks that would build Fort Jervois.  As Jonathan bit into the bread that was his lunch that …

“Wind Lulled From Evening Till Morning…” ~ The Last Month Aboard The Charlotte Jane

“On board the Charlotte Jane…I try to recollect the events of the past five days, which from confusion, sickness and disagreeables of every kind could not be recorded at the time…”Edward Ward – 12th September 1850.The Charlotte Jane had sailed out of Plymouth on the 7th September 1850. Edward starts his journal off on the …

Sir Arthur Dudley Dobson (1841 – 1934)

Sir Arthur Dudley Dobson was truly a man-child amongst men! Arthur first entered into history as a nine year old, aboard the ‘Cressy’ with his father Edward Senior and his older brother George. His mother and younger siblings would arrive the following year aboard the Fatima – the Canterbury Association’s 19th ship. Edward Senior struggled …

James Pope (1864- 1906)

I have walked around St Cuthbert’s Cemetery in Governor’s Bay many, many times, always intrigued by the headstones of the families that are buried there. The marriages between them ignited my imagination delightfully! As a teenager, I recorded down the info on these headstones and worked out the who’s who by the clues left to …

The Red Rocks Of Te Ngarara – Port Levy

During the late 1820’s, not many European ships sailed into Ōhinehou (Lyttelton Harbour) and those that did carried the rough characters that were the whalers, sealers and merchants. One of these merchant ships was from the Australian firm of Cooper and Levey and its Captain was William B. Rhodes. At the time, the most populated …

Canterbury’s First Flushable Toliet

Legend has it that this was the first flushable toilet in Canterbury!!! Of course, more modern now than when first built by the Rhodes brothers at Purau Bay in Lyttelton Harbour in 1853. A HUGE thank you to Chris Gardiner who welcomed me onto his earthquake shattered Purau property that has been in his family …