Print
Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 9, May 1968

January, 1907, I was staying in Waihi with friends, when prolonged rain set in. If memory serves me right, it rained fairly steady for three weeks. Two days after it stopped, leaving behind sodden paddocks, swollen creeks and muddy road, I set out for KatiKati by coach. The driver was the late Mr. Harry Deverell. His hands were bandaged, and as we drove along, he told me that two days previously, as he reached KatiKati from Waihi, he was informed that the Aongatete flat was impassable. Undaunted, he took one of the coach-horses, saddled it, and taking the Tauranga mail-bag, set out for Tauranga.

When he came to the flat a wide sea of water confronted him, but he rode in. Soon the horse stumbled, threw him, and he was washed into a barbed-wire fence, which he held on to, his hands becoming badly cut and scratched. He did not see the mail-bag again, but it was picked up about four days later by Mr. Frank Pritt, onto whose farm it had been washed. The horse escaped unharmed. Mr. Deverell managed to mount again, and turned back to KatiKati. It must have been a nerve-wracking experience, but Mr. Deverell gamely carried on.