To start with I have always heard the term THAMESITE used for people who were 'real' Thames folk! People who had their roots and foundations firmly from the goldmining years. Those families that first settled on the Thames goldfields and even after many left, they would still fondly call themselves a THAMESITE.
The question today is the spelling...I am often swayed by others that it should be THAMES-ITE. So to resolve this once and for all I went to Paperspast and searched for both terms. The Thames-ite seems to bring upa handful of false results, whereas the term THAMESITE brings up 378 results.
The first example was by Mr Macdonald in 1876.
|NZ HERALD 19 June 1876|
Paperspast for Thamesite was in the Auckland Star 1 June 1936, when a reference was made to a meeting. It summed up early memories that many will have of ex town folk making the Sunday trip for cuppa with the relatives...then going back to Auckland. Over the years as generations have died and there are no longer Grandparents to visit, these trips back home, for many, have become a thing of the past.
The Treasury - they often find relatives who have passed through Thames, and we can say...yes you too are a THAMESITE!