•  Forty years in New Zealand.

    James Buller. Forty years in New Zealand.

    The Wesleyans were the next denomination of Christian missionaries to arrive in New Zealand after the Anglicans. Their presence in the Bay of Islands dates back to the early 1820s. Established in 1836 and run for the next two decades by James Buller, Tangiterōria on the banks of the Northern Wairoa River was one of the most isolated Wesleyan mission stations. Renowned ornithologist Walter Lawry Buller (of Buller’s birds) was one of the ten children born and raised at Tangiterōria.
    James Buller. Forty years in New Zealand. London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1878.
  • Baptism register.

    Baptism register.

    The baptismal register shown here, which records both Māori and European births, is one of the country’s oldest surviving genealogical records. The entries on the pages displayed were made in 1836 and 1837 by four of the leading Wesleyan missionaries in the Hokianga region: Nathaniel Turner, John Whitely, William White and William Woon.
    Wesleyan Church, Hokianga. Baptism register. 1834-1844. From: Methodist Church of New Zealand. Records. NZMS 779.
  • Autograph album.

    Autograph album - cover.

    This album, filled with poems, autographs of missionaries and inspiring quotations, once belonged to Mary Anna Bumby.
    Anna Bumby Smales. Autograph album. 1839-1860. From: Smales family. Papers. NZMS 778.
  • Autograph album.

    Autograph album - poem.

    Originally from Yorkshire, she sailed to New Zealand in 1838 with her brother, John Hewgill Bumby, who had been selected as overall director of the Wesleyan mission in this country. After he was drowned in a boating accident in June 1840, Mary married another of Northland’s small Wesleyan community, Gideon Smales. “Well I have made up my mind after much consideration and prayer to become a Missionary’s wife!!!” she recorded in her diary. “My soul is deeply humbled at the thought of the responsibility of such a situation.”

    The six-line poem displayed, formally addressed “To Miss Bumby” but linking Mary’s first name to the Mother of Christ, was written by the Mangungu-based missionary William Woon.
    Anna Bumby Smales. Autograph album. 1839-1860. From: Smales family. Papers. NZMS 778.