Karangahake School and District 70th Jubilee 1889-1959
Yes, many of the old homes are gone, and space forbids the details of their passing, but some are left and we can tell you who lives there now. Let us begin at the foot of Turner's Hill for generous measure. Note: F for Farmer, R for Retired. M.O.W. for Ministry of Works).
Still Te Moananui's on the Flat. House across road once Mackaytown School, moved 1932 by Bottomley, later occupied by Beale, L. Havill, —. Simons, F. Lawrence's house (for 40 years). Dauphin, —. Stewart (Pig F.). Marsh's Farm, with memories of Bill, his wife and Gwen and the boys who worked there — Mr and Mrs Morgan, F.
On the site of Turner's thatched cottage, built in the 70's — Tetley, Crosby, Bill Havill, (Flor.), Uphill, Turner's, M. and N. Scott, Mr and Mrs B. Havill (M.O.W. and F.), Scott's — Feigler, King, Dowdell, Boyd. New house — Mrs Donaldson. R.
Down Hill, originally Griffin's, moved by King Meagher — Lockley, Brockelhurst and others — Harry Walder, M.O.W. & F. (Nurse Olive Hough). Snelgar's — Nelson, Ingley, Nichols, Williams, Day, Heaseman. F. Only other old home on main road, Mackaytown — Scott, White, May, Hounslow, W. Nealie, Caddy, Tyler. Opposite Corner— New School residence, Mr and Mrs Eric Nash, Head Teacher. Mine Manager's house — McCombie, Rich, McCombie, Rickard, Dutton, Mrs Ritchie. R.
On left of Milroy's Road — New house, Mr and Mrs Butler, Test clerk, P. and T. Littlejohn's — Mr and Mrs Charlie Littlejohn, Milroy, Mr and Mrs O. Pederson, P. and T. New house — Mrs Grace Morran (nee Milroy), has lived here for 23 years. Clerical Assistant, Paeroa College. Old home (now storehouse) of Milroys — a grand Mackaytown born family. Jean's life work — Maori Mission Fields, now in charge at Kawerau. New brick house — Jack Milroy has acquired many old vacant sections to establish his poultry farm — accredited," and also "a credit" to Jack and family. Danton's and others. Mr and Mrs R. Yeates (Plasterer). Nealie's (nurse), Ernie Smith, B. Morris, Gilpin, Mrs Williams (Sen.) and Mr and Mrs A. Williams, P. and T. Mrs White's (B.H.) altered by Parsons, Rickman, Miss Elma Rickman. New house — Fowler's (Shell Co.). Kitching's — Murray, Mr and Mrs Hamilton (Poultry farm employee).
Now begin at foot of Rahu Road. New house — Cliff Williams, Entwhistle. Mr Jack Clarkin moved next house from lower down. Mr and Mrs Bob Gibson. R. McDuff's, Palmers, Mr and Mrs Aitken (R. Farmer). Nelson's, Hardman, Mr and Mrs Yeates, who has been a foster mother to many for years. R. John Dargan, built when his home (Goldsworthy's) was burned. R. Mrs May O'Neil has lived here for 50 years. R. French's — Fred Dare (for 52 years), R. Miner.
On Hill: Billings — Bailey, Redfern, Mr and Mrs Walker, who have created beauty spot. R. E. D. White's — Clark, Dowdell, Mr and Mrs Pedersen (Sen.), R. Jenkinson's — Roly Griffin, Mr and Mrs Martin, R. Kulmar's — Bill Griffin, Mr and Mrs Parfit (Brenans). Dodds — Wigmores, Mr and Mrs Lee, M.O.W. New house — Mr and Mrs Corner, M.O.W. Morris' — Mr and Mrs Muirhead (great workers), Ganger, M.O.W. McLoughery's —Wight, McMillan, McLeod, Young, Turnbull, Galvin, C. Bradford, who has converted the high country into the "White Rocks Cheviot Stud Farm." Mrs Bradford has been for many years the gracious President of the local W.D.F.U.
Returning to the main highway via the Cutting — where the old steps used to be — one finds an almost deserted "Irish-town." New house — Mr and Mrs O'Reilly (Railway). Post Office — Mrs Boyd. Bradfield's — Redfern, Fisher, Mr Lusby (Railway).
Across Railway Bridge, past New Hall to River Road: New house — Mr and Mrs Wallace, M.O.W. Hutchinson's — Litherland, O'Brien, Mr and Mrs Bath, M.O.W. Hilton's — Bill Bunting, Mr and Mrs A. Morgan (Farmers Trad. Co.). Napier's — Hill, Mr and Mrs Goldsworthy (Butcher). Railway house — Delaney, Curran, Cotter and others. Mr and Mrs Judd (Railway). Searle's — Kenny, Bramble, Mr and Mrs George, M.O.W. New house — Mr and, Mrs Stan McAlpine, M.O.W. Hayward's — Tierney, Devy, Mr and Mrs Iversen (Accountant). Mr and Mrs Bill Crosbie built when moved from School Hill, M.O.W. On site of School of Mines, Bowling Greens, Tennis Courts, etc., Pratt's built. Now Mr and Mrs Gibbings, R.F.
Above Station: McLean's — Fitzgerald, Mrs Boyd, R. New house — Powell's, Wilson, Drain, Mr and Mrs Morrigan. Moran's, Mrs Patton R. and Cuthbert (Plumber). Where Connollys lived and Jack Hamilton farmed, Cleaves now farm but there is no house now. Mr and Mrs Staples built their own home near Cornes' Paddock (Paeroa hardware). Mr and Mrs Jim Brown (48 years), R. Grant's — Bill Whelan and sister, Dorrie. Bramble's — Prout, Hannaford, Mr and Mrs Hanley (car painter). Site of Cornes Homestead — Bunting (Sen.). Cotter (Sen.), Mr and Mrs John Cotter, a great worker and big-hearted farmer. Engall's — Mr and Mrs Jack Bunting (46 years), R. Miner. Antoni's — Fishers, Mr Leadbeater, R. Dixon's — Mr and Mrs Curran (Butter Factory employee). Johnston's — Rackham, Mrs Jack Rackham. Jury's — Rackham, Farmer, Pakinga. Keating's — McLeod (Sen.), Mr and Mrs Jock McLeod (Inspector of Vehicles). Lee's — Hutchinson, Gibson, Mr and Mrs Clarke, M.O.W. Well's — Williams, Mr and Mrs Mitchell (Caretaker, Golf Links). Young's — Joe Short, R. miner. La Dette's — Mrs Ansley, Crosbie, McAlpine, Day, Mr and Mrs B. Sayer (Plasterer). Fallon's — Robinson (Sen.), Fred Robinson, Mr and Mrs Thorburn, M.O.W. Frank Brown's — Thorburn, Mr and Mrs Ellis. Across river — Dolf Schultz, Mr McDonald, R. Miner.
Thus all our remaining houses are homes. But there was a period when empty houses numbered more than the number occupied. People who, in desperation, moved away in search of work made great sacrifices because there was no local demand for their property. Some were moved, some suffered mishap such as fire, and others were "sold for a song," sometimes to be resold for much more.
It may be of interest that the fine home built for the General Manager of the Crown Mine (Door) is still in a good state of preservation. It was bought by Montgomery, dismantled into sections and taken by scow from Paeroa to Tauranga and thence to Te Puke, where it later became an Old Men's Home: a fitting end when one remembers the many 'Hake men who became old before their time because of the inveterate, relentless "dust" on their lungs.