NZ Bound Index Search Hints Lists Ports
Otago Witness � Thursday� March 17, 1898 page 65
When the first ships arrived in Otago Harbour in 1848 there were still a good many of the whalers and those associated with them boatbuilding, storekeeping, etc., living. The following is a list complete as we have been able to make it from those still living who knew them at that time:-
Living at Otakau, as the Maoris called the Heads and neighourhood, were:
Mr and Mrs Beal and five children
Mr and Mrs David Carey and five children
Mr and Mrs Dugald Anderson and three children
Mr and Mrs Charles Roebuck and daughter
George Palmer (nephew of Mr Roebuck)
Mr and Mrs Ben. Colman and five children
Mr and Mrs William Colman
Mr and Mrs William Scott
Captain Peter Williams
Mr and Mrs Stewart and two children
Mr and Mrs John Sutton
Richard Driver (pilot)
Mr and Mrs William Barry and three children
French Charley (Lourdon)
Watson (known as Oamaru Watson)
Simon McKenzie (blacksmith)
Mr and Mrs Charles Windsor
Black Issac (a Negro)
John Bull (Robert Williams)
Angus Cameron (shepherd to Mr Stokes)
Black Bill (Williams)
Black Andy (N.S.W. native)
a youth named Bill (who afterwards went to Sydney)
Tom Brown (Old Tom)
Mr and Mrs Skidmore
William Isaac Haberfield
John Neimo (a Trafalgar seaman)
Rev. Charles Creed, wife and son (Wesleyan)
Mr and Mrs John Jones and family
also William, Thomas and Edward Jones
Mr and Mrs Kennard
Mr and Mrs Glover and family
Mr and Mrs McLachlan and family
Dutch Harry (Wickson)
Mr and Mrs Wood and family
Mr and Mrs R. Sisemore and family
At Port Chalmers
Mr and Mrs McKay (first inn)
Mr and Mrs Wyllie (sawyer
At Molyneux Bay
Willsher and Russell
At Jacobs River
Ned the Nailer
At the Bluff
Archie (surname not known)
At Stewart Island
Bungarie (proper name not known)
Arkers (Lewis Ackers came as a harpooner on an American whaler about 1831 and stayed)
a Spaniard (name not known)
William Palmer (William's son, Harry, was a seaman on the ill-fated Wairarapa)
Tommy Chasland (whaler)
James Brown (see Otago Witness 4 Aug. 1883 pg 8)
Long Harry and Scotch Jack (West Coast pilots)
There were no doubt others, but at this date their names are uncertainable. Many of the old whalers and sealers were best known by some nickname, and their proper names do not seem to have been known by even their most intimate friends.
Mr John Jones
The earliest whaling station appears to been established at Dusky Bay, now known as Dusky Sound. As early as 1829 Captain Peter Williams, who owned a whaling vessel established a whaling station at Preservation Inlet, or Raki-tuma, as the Maoris termed it. In 1832 the Palmer brothers (Edward and William) came to NZ and at that time Captain Williams he was in charge of the whaling station at Dusky Bay. The station was owned by Mr Bunns, of Sydney. In 1834 Mr Moles, of Sydney, had a whaling station at Dusky Bay, and John Jones and Edward Palmer subsequently bought Moles' schooner and outfit. About the same time Joseph Weller established his whaling station at Otago Heads. Whaling stations were established at Waikouaiti and the Bluff in 1835 and in 1839 John Jones had practical control of the whaling trade at the above mentioned stations, as well as the Riverton, Tauhikei, Taieri and Moeraki. The whaling industry soon attracted a number of adventurous spirits, as well as some who left their country for their country's good. Mr J. Jones was sending as much as 1800 tuns of oil to Sydney in a single season. He got �40 a tun for the oil, to say nothing of the whalebone. He became wealthily.
A tun: A measure of liquid capacity, especially one equivalent to approximately 252 gallons (954 liters)
Mr John Jones was born in Sydney in 1809. His father had been the master of a trading vessel. He came to Wellington but there was trouble with the Maoris so he headed south to Waikouaiti and acquired the whaling station there besides purchasing a large area of land from the Maoris, paid for in goods. In 1828 he married Miss Sarah Sisemore, and had a family of eleven children. Mr Jones died of heart disease in March 1869. Mr Jones was not an educated man but a shrewd man of business. Jones applied to the Methodists of Sydney and they sent him Missionary Watkin, who was on furlough from Fiji. In 1847 Mr Creed came to Waikouaiti and Mr Watkin went to Wellington. The whaling business was passing away when the first Otago settlers arrived, and the ever alert John Jones directed his attention to them as a probable source of profit.
Otago Witness May 5 1883 pg 25
HISTORICAL - Otago
Part XI - Officials
The representatives of the ruling powers in the settlement on the arrival of the first batch of immigrants were not numerous, consisting of Mr Kettle, chief surveyor and granter of timber licenses, &c., and the Company 's agent, Captain Cargill. It would be unpardonable to omit mention of another who for many years did good service to vessels arriving in conducting them safely into port - viz., the pilot. The entrance of the harbour was in those days difficult to find, being narrow, and having no light or beacon of any sort. Some of the ships ran past it a good distance, and had difficulty in getting back in the teeth of a strong southerly wind. "At 8 o'clock a.m., we fired a gun, but no answer was given. We fired again about noon, and about an hour afterwards we observed a boat about twenty miles distant coming to us; it was a pilot coming to take us into the harbour. He reached us in about an hour, and we received him gladly. He was a Yankee from North America, and his air of independence rather astonished us. A few words passed between him and the captain almost in the space of a minute. He then surveyed the ship (Blundell) from stem to stern, and cried - 'Brace the mainyards, down with the maintrysail, put up the flying jib, and down with the tryforesail.' He then set them fore and aft, and ran her to the wind, tacking east and west, and turning every hour. This was done till Monday night. We were then obliged to cast anchor under a large hill about 500 feet high at the mouth of the harbour, the wind blowing right out of the harbour mouth. The pilot's men were two Englishmen and three Natives, and a chief's son, whose father was, he said, very rich, having a mare, a foal, and two sheep."
Mr Richard Driver, the pilot referred to in the above paragraph, was well known to all the early settlers. Mr Driver has for some years given up his 'life on the ocean wave," and now ploughs the mainland on his farm at Purakanui, where may every luck attend him.
In the New Zealand Spectator of April 15th 1848, it was announced that 'A.C. Strode, Esq., deputy-inspector of Police, has been appointed acting Resident magistrate of Otago, and is also commissioned to administer the oaths to the newly-appointed magistrates of that district. Mr Strode sails on Thursday in the Perseverance for Otago, with Mr McCarthy, the acting Collector of Customs, and a party of the armed police." The Wellington Independent of about the same date also announces that "Mr Strode proceeds to the Otago settlement for the purpose of swearing in three or four gentlemen as Justices of the Peace, and Sergeant Barry and four privates of the mounted police are likewise under orders for the same destination.
The Magisterial Bench - Captain Cargill, C.H. Kettle, Mr Strode - having been duly sworn in and installed, had not much to fill their hands until Christmas Day, when a party of American whalers having drunk "not wisely, but too well," created a disturbance in the usually quiet town, but through he activity of the magistrates in swearing in special constables the tumult was soon quelled. The magistrates and constables had the satisfaction of seeing that their instant muster ma d martial appearance had the effect of driving the sailors pell-mell on board their whaleboat,, and quickly disappearing round Black Jack's Point. The jolly tars did not get the opportunity of serenading the Dunedin girls on that occasion.
The Bench invited their fellow-residents in Dunedin to meet them on the instant at the Royal Hotel, Hardie's corner, in the event of any future call. The Bench observed that-
No person can lay hand upon or resist a special constable under a pertly of �20.
Every man was bound, on being called upon in the Queen's name , to act as a constable.
The magistrates had unlimited faith in their men, and the men reposed similar confidence in their superiors - hence this first instance on record of the self-reliance of the new Zealand colonists; and so widespread and effectual has its intimation been that since that period no foreign invading force, although often threatening, has ever attempted to set foot on these shores, and what is almost as certain, never will dare or be able to do so as long as our Volunteers keep their powder dry.
The Custom House was opened by Mr McCarthy at Port Chalmers.
British and foreign spirits, 5s per gallon
Tobacco (manufactured) 1s. per lb
Cigars and snuff 2s per lb
Wines 20 per cent
Malt liquors 15 per cent
Munitions of war 39 per cent
British goods and produce 10 per cent
Foreign goods and produce 12� per cent
Glass bottles (full) spice, bulbs and plants live anomaly, printed books, duty free.
The Post Office was at Port Chalmers - A branch office was established in Dunedin under the charge of Mr James Brown, draper, Princes street; and Mr Robert Chapman, Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages.
Mr W.H. Cutten was appointed the Immigration Agent. He also held the position of the first auctioneer in the settlement and combined therewith the business of storekeeper.
The Otago News was issued on the 13th of December 1848 with Mr. H.B. Graham being printer and proprietor.
Public worship in connection with the Established Church of England was also instituted, service being held in the gaol of Dunedin.
[10/16/2001] Researching two Driver families.
1. My cousin married Margaret Driver, Otago, New Zealand, descendant of Joshua Edmonson Driver of Maryland, USA.
2. Richard Driver b. 1809 of Bristol England, came to NZ c1839. 1st Pilot of Otago Harbour. M. 1st Motoitoi. 2nd Elizabeth Robertson. Died: 1897 in Otago, New Zealand. His father was John Driver of Bristol. We believe that there is a link between the two families, and are anxious to prove it one way or the other. Richard is supposed to have run away from home at the age of 12, and gone to relations in the USA, and then joined a whaling concern and roamed the seas for a few years, before jumping ship in New Zealand. A Durry ]
Call of Early Settlers
Otago Witness, Saturday, April 7th, 1883. Page22
John Kelly, who arrived in Auckland in 1836, died on Saturday, aged 77. He was present at the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.