February 16, 1770 Captain James Cook in the “Endeavour” sights Banks “Island” (Peninsula). February 17, 1939 New Millers Department Store building (the former Civic Offices) opens. Designed by G. A. J. Hart, the building contained the South Island’s first escalator. February 18, 1982 Internationally famous writer Dame Ngaio Marsh dies at her home in Cashmere. February 19, 1873 Anglican synod decides (by a narrow margin) not to sell the present site of ChristChurch Cathedral. February 22, 1909 New “Press” building in operation in Cathedral Square. Designed by J.J. Collins and R.D. Harman, it was the city’s first ferro-concrete building. February 22, 1960 New airport terminal (designed by Paul Pascoe) opens. The first house on the Canterbury Plains, Riccarton [ca. 1890] A timeline of Christchurch events in chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.