Quail Island Gets A Feminine Touch

I can’t say whether Elizabeth Watts-Russell was one of those who laughed when the Ward brothers – Edward, Henry and Hamilton – chose Quail Island as the place to set up their farm.  The brothers were well aware of the giggles happening around Lyttelton as they prepared to make their move.  Edward – the eldest …

DIAMOND HARBOUR – Mark Pringle Stoddard (1819 – 1885)

Charlotte Godley (wife of Christchurch’s founder John Robert Godley) didn’t miss a thing.  During her short time in New Zealand, she observed and met some of the very early colourful characters of Canterbury.  None escaped the fury of her pen when she wrote letters home to her mother in England. Mr. Mark Pringle Stoddard was …

John Annan (1869 – 1931)

When I stroll around Canterbury’s cemeteries, I glance over every stone for two main reasons. Firstly I am usually on the search for a particular name and secondly I am looking for a good story. I found John Annan’s grave in Lyttelton Public Cemetery and on his stone it stated that he died as a …

Kathleen Scott & a Manchurian Pony

Here is Mrs. Kathleen Scott meeting one of the Manchurian Ponies that was heading down to the snow in 1910. Quail Island in Lyttelton Harbour was used as a training area for breaking in and getting these little sturdy fellas ready for the race to the South Pole. As a side note, Mrs Scott went …

“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 …

Gleig’s Island ~ Quail Island

“Having reached the island which Quail Island rises to about 250 ft above the level of the harbour I landed at a shelly beach and ascended the hill in order to correct and complete my sketch. During my walk there I flushed several quail and from that circumstance I gave it the name Quail Island.” …

Cyrus Davie (1821 – 1871)

Cyrus Davie will always hold the most interesting record regarding our first four ships. He was the only passenger who made the journey on two of them!!! From what I understand though, it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. Cyrus – as most of the settlers would have done too – took life by …

The Ward Brothers

Maybe it had been the tedious bumpy ROADLESS journey over the sea of tussock – from Hawkins (a stone’s throw from Darfield) to Rolleston – that made the farmhand lower the new plough down to harvesting position before he towed it back to Bangor in which he worked. He had been sent out hours before …