Sunday, February 14, 2021

Thames (NZ): Dunnage Postcard of Kuranui Bay

 Its no secret that I love Dunnage postcards! The postcards published by Mr Dunnage, stationer / bookseller of Thames during the 1913-1920s capture a period overlooked by many other photographers.


DUNNAGE's VARIETY DEPOT: Pollen Street, Established 1913 and continued through to 1925, when W H Richardson took over the business. While a seller of books, Dunnage appears to have specialised in Stationery plus other variety items.

Dunnage Postcard No 36

The card is labelled as Tararu, Thames - the view is of Kuranui Bay. Interesting to note that Auckland Libraries Sir George Grey Collection make mention that it can be called Mission Bay.

Looking south along the Thames coastal road at Kuranui Bay (Mission Bay), near Tararu.
Showing houses and a hotel.
Auckland Libraries Heritage Collections 35-R1443

Ironically I was on this very beach today! The land has been reclaimed where the Kuranui Reserve stretches out from the point back to the reclaimed land of the Moanataiari subdivision.

Google Maps view of Kuranui Bay, Thames 2020

I am awaiting a higher resolution copy from Auckland Libraries, so that we can explore the houses and locate the hotel mentioned in the caption! I assume it is the two storied building left of centre and opposite the net drying area.

Interestingly, a search for 'Mission Bay' references in the Thames newspapers draws a blank - the only ones relating to Mission Bay in Auckland.

My Great, great, great grandmother Susan Timmins lived on these hills and herded goats in the early 1870s. Here are a few other early photos of the Kuranui Bay area.

Source: Thames Diamond Jubilee Book 1927

1877 Tararu Road Thames - view of south end of Kuranui Bay, Tararu.