This week in Christchurch history (27 October – 2 November)

29 October 1830
Te Rauparaha charters the “Elizabeth” (under the unscrupulous Captain Stewart) and sails for Akaroa.

30 October 1985
Writer-in-Residence at Canterbury University, Keri Hulme wins internationally prestigious Booker McConnell prize for her novel The Bone People.

31 October 1912
Opening of Queen’s Theatre, the city’s first purposebuilt picture theatre. The building was latterly the M. W. Arcade.

1 November 1906
New Zealand International Exhibition (the biggest in the country to that time) opens in Hagley Park. Over 1 million people visited the exhibition during the next few months. A branch railway line was built across North Hagley Park to service the exhibition. The attractions included New Zealand’s first professional symphony orchestra [conducted by Alfred Hill], and the first Dominion pipe band contest which was won by the Dunedin Highland Pipe Band.

Captain Lorraine's balloon shown taking off from Lancaster Park, 3 Nov. 1899  [1899], CCL PhotoCD 7, IMG0084
Captain Lorraine’s balloon shown taking off from Lancaster Park, 3 Nov. 1899 [1899], CCL PhotoCD 7, IMG0084
1 November 1921
Woolston Borough joins City.

1 November 1989
New Christchurch City Council established by amalgamation of the old City, Waimairi District, Riccarton Borough, Heathcote County and parts of Paparua and Eyre Counties.

2 November 1899
Balloonist Captain Lorraine lost at sea after an ascent from Lancaster Park.

2 November 1914
Riccarton (Deans) Bush presented to the city by the Deans family.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More October and November events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (8 September – 14 September)

8 September 1850
Sir George Seymour” leaves Plymouth with settlers.

11 September 1928
Kingsford-Smith and his crew (Ulm, Litchfield and McWilliams) land at Wigram in “Southern Cross” after the first trans-Tasman flight. A crowd of 30,000, alerted by all-night radio broadcasts, had gathered at the airfield.

The Southern Cross. [Sept. 1928] Charles Kingsford-Smith (1897-1935) made the first Tasman flight from Sydney to Christchurch, arriving at Wigram Aerodrom on 10 Sept. 1928. His aircraft is pictured on arrival. Christchurch City Libraries, CCL PhotoCD 17, IMG0015
The Southern Cross.
[Sept. 1926] Charles Kingsford-Smith (1897-1935) made the first Tasman flight from Sydney to Christchurch, arriving at Wigram Aerodrom on 10 Sept. 1928. His aircraft is pictured on arrival. Christchurch City Libraries, CCL PhotoCD 17, IMG0015
11 September 1928
G.W. Skellerup founds Para Rubber Company, New Zealand’s first retail rubber goods business at 175 Manchester Street. Christchurch soon became the centre of the rubber industry in New Zealand.

Street view of Para Rubber Company Ltd shop, Lower Hutt, Wellington Region. Negatives of the Evening Post newspaper. Ref: EP/1959/3235-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/30645364
Street view of Para Rubber Company Ltd shop, Lower Hutt, Wellington Region. Negatives of the Evening Post newspaper. Ref: EP/1959/3235-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand.

13 September 1877
Christchurch Girls High School (designed by Thomas Cane) opens on the corner of Hereford Street and Rolleston Avenue. The school moved to its present Cranmer Square site in 1881. The original school is now part of the Arts Centre. The Cranmer Square building was demolished in 2011.

Christchurch Girls' High School, Armagh Street, Christchurch [192-?] Christchurch City Libraries, CCL PhotoCD 17, IMG0017
Christchurch Girls’ High School, Armagh Street, Christchurch [192-?]
Christchurch City Libraries, CCL PhotoCD 17, IMG0017
13 September 13, 1882
Woolston Town Board formed.

14 September 1976
Inter-island ferry service from Lyttelton ends with the last sailing of the Rangatira.

14 September 1985
Canterbury loses Ranfurly Shield to Auckland after a 3 year reign. Final score 28-23.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More September events in the Chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (1 September – 7 September)

1 September 1888
Earthquake causes damage throughout City. Cathedral spire badly damaged.

Earthquake damage to the Cathedral spire, in 1888 and 1901 [1901] Christchurch City Libraries, CCL PhotoCD 3, IMG0059
Earthquake damage to the Cathedral spire, in 1888 and 1901
[1901]
See this image on our website.
4 September 2010
The Darfield earthquake woke Canterbury at 4:35am. The magnitude 7.1. quake was centred 40km west of Christchurch.

5 September 1985
French agent Dominique Prieur convicted over the bombing of the Greenpeace ship “Rainbow Warrior”, transferred from Mt Eden Jail to Christchurch Womens Prison.

6 September 1878
Railway to Dunedin officially opens. The occasion was marked by a banquet (The Star, 6 September 1878 via Papers Past)

7 September 1850
First Canterbury Association settlers sail from Plymouth, England on the Charlotte Jane, Randolph and Cressy.

7 September 1863
G. Lumley convicted of manslaughter. (Monday September 7 1863 Supreme Court in Lyttelton Times, 9 September 1863 via Papers Past)

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More September events in the Chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (6 – 12 January)

10 January 1887
Tramway to New Brighton completed.
11 January 1851
First copy of the “Lyttelton Times”, edited by J.E. FitzGerald. Read the first issue online.
In January 1988, construction began on what was once Christchurch’s tallest building to date, the 76.3m Price Waterhouse building.

Price Waterhouse Coopers

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More January events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (30 December – 5 January)

1 January 1908
Shackleton expedition sails for Antarctica in “Nimrod”. A crowd estimated as high as 50,000 watched the departure – probably the largest in Lyttelton’s history.

4 January 1876
First meeting of the Christchurch Drainage Board.

Members of the Christchurch Drainage Board and visitors present at the opening of the septic tank, Bromley sewage farm [4 Sept. 1905]
5 January 1940
First echelon of Canterbury troops for World War II leave Lyttelton on “Dunera” and “Sobieski”.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More December and January events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (23 – 29 December)

26 December 1863
Opening of the Royal Princess Theatre, the city’s first true theatre. It had been the Canterbury Music Hall.

26 December 1870
First rowing regatta on the Avon. This photo shows a 1921 regatta.

26 December 1879
Serious Catholic/Protestant riot in Manchester Street.

27 December 1850
“Cressy” arrives. These 4 ships brought a total of 773 settlers. Although Cantabrians like to commemorate these “first four ships”, there were actually 8 chartered vessels which brought 1500 Canterbury Association settlers in the first few months. By the following December, 19 ships had brought over 3000 settlers.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More December events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (16 – 22 December)

16 December 1864
149 years ago the foundation stone was laid for ChristChurch Cathedral. The weather was atrocious.

View the ad on Papers Past

20 December 1955
First Antarctic flights by USN Operation Deep Freeze from Christchurch. Browse our page on Antarctica and its Christchurch connections.

21 December 1877
New Christchurch railway station opens.

22 December 1885
Statue of William Moorhouse unveiled in the Botanic Gardens.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More December events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (9 – 15 December)

Geological sections of Lyttelton and Christchurch railway tunnel [by Julius von Haast]. [ca. 1875]
9 December 1867
Lyttelton railway tunnel was the first in the world to be drilled through a volcano rim. It was New Zealand’s first tunnel, and at the time was described as one of the longest in the world, yet had been planned and financed by this tiny colonial settlement whose population was just over 9000, (6,647 in Christchurch and 2,510 in Lyttelton.)

12 December 1849
New Zealand Company agrees to reserve two and a half million acres as a site for the Canterbury settlement.

13 December 1942
Premiere in Christchurch of Landfall in Unknown Seas by Douglas Lilburn and Allen Curnow.

15 December 1848
Captain Joseph Thomas, William Fox, and surveyors Cass and Torlesse arrive at the site of Lyttelton in the “Fly”. Thomas names the harbour “Port Victoria”. He and his party had been sent by the Canterbury Association to choose a site for the new colony and make the necessary preparations for the arrival of settlers in 1850.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More December events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (2 – 8 December)

Rehua Marae2 December 1960
Rehua meeting house opens, the first new meeting house in the South Island for over 100 years.

3 December 1867
Canterbury Museum (New Zealand’s first) opened to public in an upstairs room in the Canterbury Provincial Government Buildings. The collection had been assembled by Julius (later Sir Julius) Von Haast.

3 December 1924
Children’s Library opens in Hereford Street.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More December events in our Christchurch chronology.

This week in Christchurch history (25 November – 1 December)

26 November 1959
Memorial Avenue (a memorial to airmen killed in W.W.II) officially opens.

Memorial Avenue, Christchurch  [ca. 1959]
Memorial Avenue, Christchurch [ca. 1959].The Governor-General, Viscount Cobham (1909-1977), unveiled a plaque at the intersection of Greers Road and Memorial Avenue on 26 November, 1959. The plaque reads: “This avenue is dedicated to the memory of those men and women of the New Zealand armed forces who gave their lives in the Second World War”.
27 November 1985
Remains of swimming pool uncovered when excavating behind No 1 stand at Lancaster Park. Pool used as venue for 1907 Australian and New Zealand Swimming Championships.

28 November 1893
Women vote for the first time in parliamentary elections.

28 November 1908
Work begins on the Summit Road, the first part of Harry Ell’s obsessional dream.

28 November 1964
Opening of Cashin Quay, Lyttelton Harbour. The engineering techniques used in reclaiming this area were unique in the world.

29 November 1901
Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s first Antarctic expedition arrives at Lyttelton in “Discovery”.

29 November 1978
Concert at Q.E.II Park by rock singer David Bowie.

1 December 1949
Sidney G. (later Sir Sidney) Holland (Fendalton) becomes Prime Minister.

Christchurch chronology
A timeline of Christchurch events in
chronological order from pre-European times to 1989.

More November events in our Christchurch chronology.