20 July 1851
First church in Christchurch opened – later dedicated as St Michael and All Angels in 1859.
23 July 1851
Pioneer William Deans among 28 lost in the wreck of the Maria in Cook Strait. Godley had tried to deprive the Deans and Hay families of their farms because he wanted only Anglicans to own land in the new settlement. The Deans brothers had sold sheep to pay the legal costs of fighting Godley’s high handed action, and William Deans was travelling to Sydney to buy replacement stock.
23 July 1857
First dramatic presentation in Canterbury, which featured Mrs Foley in “The Loan of a Lover” and “Betsy Baker” at the Lyttelton Town Hall. (see an advertisement in the 25 July 1857 Lyttelton Times).
24 July 1983
New Zealand’s first “test-tube” twins born at Christchurch Hospital.
26 July 1879
Canterbury Rugby Football Association (New Zealand’s first) formed. See our page on early rugby in Christchurch.