Waiuku in the News – Founding of Pollok Settlement

Exterior view of an old cottage with a picket fence out front, Pollok, November 1991. A punga tree shades part of the house. Old farm buildings can be glimpsed beyond the macrocarpa trees behind the house. Photograph published in the photo essay, ‘The Rural Scene: Natural Beauty on City’s Doorstep’, Counties Courier, 19 November 1991, pp. 4-5.


Are glad to observe that the Rev. James M. Smith, in company with friends to the number of thirty four, arrived on the 12th instant per the ’Ganges,’ after a very pleasant and, on the whole, speedy voyage. The reverend gentleman, we believe, on account of severe indisposition, was urges by his medical advisers to demit his charge, and proceed to New Zealand, as a means of recovery. When the announcement of his intention to leave for a foreign land was made, there was one feeling in the congregation – that of deep and heartfelt sympathy with him in his affliction. After a connection of nearly twenty years, during which the onerous and responsible duties of the gospel ministry were most efficiently and faithfully discharged by Mr. Smith. So ardently attached were some, that they could not bear the idea of separation. Accordingly, a number of the congregation at once resolved to emigrated to New Zealand along with him. So far as we know, such a manifestation of attachment to a pastor is seldom one never met with. It is a most substantial proof of the high esteem in which he was held by his congregation. We may also mention that many more of his devoted flock intend to follow him and join him in this land, as soon as circumstances permit. Having been informed of the expected arrival of these emigrants, the Rev. Mr. Bruce, of this city, about two months ago, kindly interested himself on their behalf, intimating to the Provincial government they they were desirous of establishing themselves in this province, with the means of taking up their land together, and possessing the advantages of mutual co-operation. The government, without the least hesitation, set apart for this special settlement the Ramaroa and Opoia blocks, situated on the Manukau harbour, and containing about six thousand acres. Whilst possessing much good soil, these blocks have also a fair proportion of forest land, and being situated at no great distance from Auckland, and accessible both by sea and land, a better position for a settlement could not be desired. We cannot, therefore, but congratulate Mr. Smith and his party on their acquisition of a site so advantageous. They, of course, cannot take into their possession the whole of this extensive tract of land, but the government has kindly consented to reserve a portion for the occupancy of their expected friends. Whilst henceforth the settlement will be known by the designation of “Pollok Settlement,” the settlers, as a religious community, will be distinguished by the name “Scotch Presbyterians.” We need scarcely add that we earnestly with Mr. Smith and the Rev. Andrew Anderson, who accompanies him, all success in their efforts to extend the knowledge of Christ’s gospel in the part of the world; nor do we doubt but by Divine aid they will prove to be efficient instruments in the promotion of the Lord’s work. — Communicated.


Daily Southern Cross, Volume XIX, Issue 1964, 2 November 1863, Page 4

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