Friday, 12 December 2014

Retro Greeting Cards & Thanks

Interleaf text sheet. No printer attribution or country of origin marked Image BFA 2014
Thank you to everyone who contributed to the Bartley Family Archive this year. 
My thanks also to all those who visited this site, as well as to those who shared with us by way of comment and email.

We have a seasonal flavour for this post, as you see.

These images are scans of Christmas cards available  in 1953.  All were purchased in New Zealand. They have been donated to the Archive as a group.
The graphics give a good taste of the post war culture don't they?

All are welcome to use the images on this page for their own festive creations. Enjoy.

Interleaf text sheet. Printed in England. Image MGM  Image BFA 2014

Interleaf text sheet. Marked on reverse 17B British Production Image BFA 2014

Double Fold Presentation. Reverse Marked X602 Copyright Rust Craft Boston USA. Image BFA 2014

Sunday, 30 November 2014

Mercury Theatre - the original Kings Theatre, Auckland - designed by Edward Bartley

Leisure industries thrive in boom years. In the early 1900's John Fuller, a Devonport resident, was enjoying great success in the entertainment business. 
With his sons, Fuller had taken over Abbott's Opera House and brought several touring companies to Auckland. He then expanded into moving pictures- the entertainment phenomena of the century.. 
In 1910 he engaged Edward Bartley to design a small theatre for both live performances and cinema. The site was a sloping one in Pitt St, one block back from Karangahape Rd. 

One of the architect's primary concerns was fire safety, as it had been in his theatre for Abbott's Opera House. 
New technology and materials were now available to combat fire. 
Asbestos slates were used as wall lining and the stage was backed by an asbestos curtain. The stairways were ferro-concrete and all fire escape exits lead out to ground level, a safety feature made possible by the sloping site. The theatre was designed for a capacity of 1800 people. 

The builder, W. Hutchinson placed a successful tender for erection of the building of just under £8,000, which was exceeded somewhat by final completion (refer Auckland Star 23 feb 1910 p2 col 4.)
Concept drawing NZ Graphic 13 April 1910
NZ Herald 26 Nov 1910

 Opening night at the Kings Theatre, on 28 November 1910, was a feast of the latest movie entertainment but it was as a home for small theatrical companies that the venue was later best known as the Mercury.

The Observer 3 Dec 1910

The theatre is a listed building, Historic Places Trust Category 2

Stained Glass, Ng Building, K Rd, a former entrance to the Kings Theatre BFA 2013

Refer also NZ Building Progress 1 April 1910, 1 June 1910, 8 Nov 1910
For splendid coverage of the theatre highlights here see:
The theatre is reputedly haunted:
On the Norman Ng building and the former theatre entrance see :

Monday, 17 November 2014

Galbraith's Mt Eden - the former Grafton Public Library - architect Edward Bartley

Galbraiths Mt Eden Rd. Image Bartley Archive 2003
Edward Bartley was a strong advocate for public libraries. Universal and free access to means of self improvement  formed a corner stone of his social philosophy.
In 1878 he had helped to establish the first public library in the Auckland province, at Devonport.

Auckland City Council set aside funds for the first branch library in 1911. An architectural design competition was advertised, closing in February 1912.
The site available was next to the upper Symonds St reservoir.
 Edward Bartley's proposal was chosen. The concept proposed a single storey building with an 85 foot frontage to Mt Eden Road, costing less than the amount voted by rate payers.

Concept Drawing NZ Graphic 28 Feb 1912

The design featured an ornate portico supported on six ferro-concrete columns of the Roman Ionic order, covering broad entrance steps. The two bays either side of the entrance were defined by projecting pillars.The floor plan included lecture hall, committee room, reading room and library facilities for up to 10,000 volumes.
Lighting was by electricity. Acoustics and fire safety were especially considered in the plastered cement and brick construction.
Librarians office and counter was positioned between the two rooms with a clear view of the entrance as well. The inner hall was provided with an ornamental tiled floor and rimu panelled dado.
The windows were a notable design feature. Each are supported by four concrete mullions 6 feet in height, designed to reference the entrance columns. At the time they were the largest single mould concrete products made in Auckland.

Edward was well over 70 years old at the time of opening in March 1913.
Confident in adapting his style to modern taste, he was keen to push the known boundaries for new technologies when given the opportunity.

Refer also NZ Graphic 28 Feb 1912 p 26;NZH 3 May 1912 p9 col 1; 5 March 1912 p9 col 1; 28 May 1912 p9 col 1; 5 March 1913 p5 col 6; 17 March 1913 p5 col 4

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

St John's Ponsonby - an Edward Bartley design

Image Bartley Archive 2003
The 1882 construction of St John's was a huge undertaking for the Wesleyan Methodist community. The architect’s fees alone amounted to more than £2000. 
Six months were allowed for the construction, which included moving the existing building further back, to be used as a school. 
The new church was constructed on concrete foundations. The exterior is a feast of tracery and finials, tower and spire, on a well balanced design. 
Image Bartley Archive Postcard collection

The tower, at the north east corner, stands 50 feet high and is surmounted by a spire of 62 feet in height. It pays homage to the spire of Salisbury Cathedral, England in line and proportion. Weather put it to the test before the church was opened, and before the iron cladding was attached. Auckland experienced a week of gale force winds in mid- March 1882 and progress was delayed. The task of lifting the Maltese cross into position at the top of the spire was postponed until the 20 March and the arrival of calmer weather.[i]
The interior of St John’s has been altered more than once over the years. 
The original design displayed a sense of drama and a high degree of attention to aesthetics in the finishing details. The hammer beam roof was filled in with tracery. At the back of the rostrum was a Gothic screen – a reredos- composed of three painted arches filled with tracery, standing 22 feet high. The front of the rostrum was also of Gothic arches with turned columns. The ornamental communion rail repeated the use of turned rails to complete the effect. Practical matters were not overlooked. 
Acoustics and light levels were accounted for in the design itself but additional devices for climatic control were incorporated into the design in such a way as to be indiscernible to the eye.  The tower was constructed so as to provide ventilation for the church. A ventilation mechanism was built into the trefoil decoration of the cornice, which could be controlled by the doorkeeper, a solution Edward had first employed in his design for Holy Trinity, Devonport. 
The result was a striking building which functions well on a practical level at the same time as it calls attention to traditions of worship across time and space.

[i] New Zealand Herald 21 March 1882 page 4 col.6

 An April Fool's Day stunt was played out on the site in 1882 - this eloquent report gives a clue to Edward's sense of humour.

Observer 1 April 1882
This beautiful Gothic Revival church, the largest Edward has designed for the Wesleyan church, opened for worship 30 April 1882.
St John's is a Category 2 registered building. Refer

See also: Laurenson, G I 'A Spire on the Skyline'; NZ Wesleyan Vol 11 p284; Auckland Weekly News Sept 1881 p22 col 1; AWN 30 Sept 1882 p 1 & 3 (Image); NZH 6 Aug 1881 p 4 col 7; 3 Nov 1881 p 6 col 3; 20 Sept 1881 p 6 col 3; 22 March 1882 p 4 col 6; 29 April 1882 p 4 col 7

Edward Bartley's Alterations to the original South British Building

Image from Bartley Archive Postcard collection

The building Aucklanders now know as the Blackett's building was once the original offices of South British Insurance. The company was a New Zealand firm founded in 1872 by a group of influential colonists. Their business was principally fire and marine insurance.

NZ Herald 10 October 1910

This corner of Queen and Shortland St housed the company until the late 1920's, when an adjacent site was taken for the construction of state of the art offices on the corner of Shortland St and High St.

Richard Keals designed the first offices for erection in 1879. The Italianate design was complemented by a statue of Britannia on the roof line which became an Auckland land mark.
Just before the World War Edward Bartley's firm was asked to take charge of alterations and modernising.
NZ Herald 16 July 1910
A third storey was added and the footprint widened to take in the frontage previously part of Woolam's pharmaceuticals. 

Auckland Star 14 July 1910
NZ Herald 30 May 1911

The entranceway was improved and enhanced by a grand stairway, with modern lifts for the use of the public.

NZ Herald 7 March 1911 p7 col 1
 Hand held Minimax fire extinguishers were installed throughout.

NZ Herald 6 May 1911

NZ Herald 6 Novermber 1911

The 1929 headquarters was designed by Grierson, Aimer & Draffin. M Keith Draffin had worked with Edward Bartley up until the latter's death in 1919. The design is a feast of deco detail in the Chicago style

Image courtesy urbanexplorerflickr

Refer also: NZ Building Progress 1 August 1910, 1 November 1912 
HZ Historic Places Trust Category 1 South British; Category 1 Blackett's building
Vennel, C.W Risks and rewards, a policy of enterprise 1872-1972 Wilson and Horton Auckland 1972

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Edward Bartley Supervising Architect St Matthews in the City, Auckland

St Matthew's in the City. Postcard collection Bartley Family Archive

After an association of many years Edward Bartley's final work for the Anglican Church was to be, by contrast, the largest edifice of his career. 
The landmark of St Matthew’s in the City is as familiar to Auckland’s 21st century residents and visitors as it was to those of last century. Sitting, as it does, on the ridge above Queen Street, at the corner of Wellesley and Hobson Streets, the site was always one to command respect. 
Edward Bartley supervised the construction of St Matthews to the design of the London architect F. L. Pearson.

This type of project was first proposed in the late 1850's, around the time the Bartley brothers came to Auckland - to build a stone church for the Auckland Diocese. 

In preparing his design Pearson was required to allow for a congregation of 1200. His original design did not include the spire, which was proposed later. In 1900, when the plans were placed on view, it was noted that the whole effect was almost a replica of the Truro Cathedral on a small scale[i]. At the time of this viewing the proposed plans, including spire and architects fees, amounted to £28,000.

Edward had a good deal of preparation work to complete before tenders were called. While he was not responsible for the design itself, he was required to copy and circulate Mr Pearson’s 39 large plans and make recommendations on the materials to be used in the construction. Young draughtsmen Gerard Jones was working with Edward at this time. He was later to make an outstanding contribution as an architect. He would have spent many hours over the drawing board with Edward, probably speculating on the feasibility of instant plan reproduction.
Rangitoto blue stone had been proposed for the foundations and body of the walls of the new church, with Te Kuiti limestone for the outside and inside wall facings. Mt Somers stone was suggested for all the dressed stone used. Kauri was the preferred choice for the interior joinery. Also in the original plan was a boundary fence of Te Kuiti limestone rubble. However, these suggested materials were never beyond dispute.
 Oamaru stone was finally settled on as the best option and the white of the stone certainly emphasised the clarity of the design. Welsh slate was chosen for the roofing material and plans to build the spire were ultimately abandoned.

Completed within three years, without cost over-runs, the church was consecrated in March 1905. At that time the stone vaulting of the ceiling drew much comment and admiration, as it still does today.

The ceremonial around the Laying of the Foundation Stone April 1902
 The foundation stone was laid on 25 April 1902. It was a day of spectacular processions and ceremony, completed in the evening by a Conversazione for invited guests. Although occasioned by new beginnings, the participants and style of the proceedings accentuated the antiquity of the rites associated with the Laying of the Stone.  Shortly after midday the representatives of Freemasonry began the event with a mass procession to attend a service in the existing church. Afterwards, a great assembly gathered outside for the ceremony, where the Grand Master of New Zealand Freemasons assisted the Governor the Earl of Ranfurly. The Stone itself was laid over a time capsule which contained, amongst other things, a piece of oak from Canterbury Cathedral and a piece of sandstone from the 12th century Norman Church in Holy Island.[iii] 
Edward Bartley stands with his hand on the Foundation Stone, April 1902

Construction progress is shown in these and the following two images taken from plates prepared by Edward Bartley

Interior view from the Postcard Collection Bartley Family Archive
Completed within three years, without cost over-runs, the church was consecrated in March 1905. At that time the stone vaulting of the ceiling drew much comment and admiration, as it still does today.
A view of Auckland taken from the site of St Matthew's looking toward Rangitoto in the centre.
 Image Bartley Family Archive
[i] New Zealand Herald 13 August 1900
[ii] Auckland Weekly News 25 January 1901 page 40 col.2
[iii] Also included in the time capsule was the following legend on parchment:
St Matthews Church, Auckland New Zealand: This stone was laid on Wednewday, April 23 Anno Lucis 5902; Anno Domini 1902, with full Masonic honours, by the Most Worshipful the Grand Master of Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of New Zealand, Brother Alexander Stuart Fussell, and His Excellency the Governor, Brother the Right Honourable the Earl of Ranfurly, G.C.M.G. The estimated cost of the building is £30,000, erected out of accumulated funds raised by subscriptions commencing in the year 1853, started and husbanded for many years by the late Mr Thomas Weston for the object of erecting a stone church. In the year 1863 the fund had increased to £5000, but the subscribers unselfishly resolved to erect a wooden church out of other funds, in the trust and hope that in 20 or 30 years their children would be able to erect a building worthy of the Church they loved and laboured for. Architect Mr Frank L.Pearson, F.R.I.B.A., London; supervising architect Mr Edward Bartley, Auckland; contractors Mr John Ferguson and Mr James Malcolm; clerk of works Mr William Thomas; vicar, the Rev. W.E.Gillam; vestry Mr T.W.Doonin, Mr Fred Whitehead, Mr H Peake, Mr G.E.Lee, Mr F.P.Wood, Mr R.H.A. Potter, Mr T Cole, Mr H.J.Lee, Dr Hooper and Mr A Wright; Building Committee, the Rev W.E.Gillam (chairman), Mr W.S.Cochrane, Mr James Burtt, Mr Fred Whitehead, Mr Edward Langley; trustees, Mr W.S.Cochrane and Mr James Burtt”
This document was placed in a bottle with copies of the newspapers for the day of  23 April, a Church Gazette for 1 April 1902; the last printed report of St Matthews vestry, a programme of the day’s ceremony; a copy of the letter sent by G. A. Selwyn to the Archbishop of Canterbury accepting the position of Bishop of New Zealand; six postage stamps of the first issue of the reign of Edward VII; the oak from Canterbury Cathedral, England and the sandstone from the Crusader Church.

Refer NZ Herald 13 Feb 1892 p5 col 6; 31 July 1895 p4 col 7;31 July 1896 p5 col 4; 15 Aug 1900 p7 col 4; 21 Jan 1901 p5 col 3; 22 May 1901 p6 col 6; 25 June 1901 p5 col 2 and p8 col 6; 28 Sept 1901 p5 col 1; 9 Oct 1901 p5 col 2; 26 Oct 1901 p6 col 8;6 Nov 1901 p4 col 8; 19 Nov 1901 p4 col 7;21 Nov 1901 p6 col 4; 23 Nov 1901 p5 col 1; 27 Nov 1901 p 7 col 3; 19 Dec 1902 p8 col 4,5; 12 March 1901 p5 col 1; 19 April 1902 p5 col 1; 23 April 1902 p5 col 2; 24 April 1902 p6  col 3-6 Laying of Foundation Stone, and p 4 col 7 also Weekly News 1 May 1902 p 9; 7 March 1905 p6 col 1-2 Consecration ceremony; 8 March 1904 p6 col 2-4; see also supplement 8 March 1905 p1

New Zealand Servicemen - 3rd Division, 37 Battery Artillery - Ron Buchanan

A tribute to a serviceman today.
Miss Doreen Buchanan, the donor of this material, wished to share the materials she had preserved from the period of the Second World War.
Without living relatives, she donated these images and documents to Bartley Family Archive in order to ensure their preservation. She also asked that we share her brother's memorabilia, as well as make it safe for the future. Hence this post.
All originals will be sent on to the National Army Museum.

If you have historical images and documentation but are unsure how to preserve it please do contact your local museum. They always welcome enquiries from the community and are well qualified to give you the best advice.

Ronald Redmund BUCHANAN was the son of James (Jimmy) Buchanan of Ellerslie, Auckland, New Zealand.
Ron's father was a well known jockey and horse trainer with stables in Puriri Avenue, Greenlane. The Buchanans had Ellerslie connections dating back to the 1890s.

Mass photo of entire 3rd Division, 37 Battery Artillery, image BFA

Reverse hold the signatures of all the men in the Division, image BFA

Ron Buchanan on the occasion of his enlistment #49262
This is Ron's pay book showing typical entries for armed forces pay roll.
Soldier's Identity Certificate and service medals: 1939-45 Star; 1939-35 Medal; Pacific Star;Defence Medal; Service 1939-45
A welcome telegram to anxious parents
Soldier's Certificate of Discharge

Monday, 8 September 2014

Edward Bartley's Synagogue Princes St, Auckland Category 1 Listed NZHPT

Former Jewish Synagogue Princes St frontage Auckland Image Bartley Family Archive
The former Jewish Synagogue in Princes Street, Auckland, is one of Edward Bartley's  best known religious buildings. The Trustees for the project had already asked  Keals to submit plans for a wooden building when they decided, in 1884, to open the field by way of architectural competition. Thirteen entries were received including one under the name Expecto Credo, which was Edward’s and successful. He received tenders by 1 September 1884 for the erection and completion of the Synagogue.

West Elevation Former Jewish Synagogue Image Bartley Family Archive

In selecting the Bartley design, the Trustees were taking a brave step. The style of the design departed from the conservative manner in which the majority of Auckland’s public buildings were designed. At the time the design was called Romanesque with a touch of Gothic[i]. Edward used some eastern motifs and decorative features to refer to the origins of the faith which would be observed within the building. Furthermore, the suggested use of hydraulic lime cement in the construction was still considered unusual, despite several years of use and development of cement technology in the Auckland area. The white plastered exterior finish of the building again referenced the Eastern origins, within a European tradition suggested by the Romanesque form.
The interior received the highest praise at the time of completion. The ornamental glasswork was undertaken by J. Henderson of Wyndham St. Two circular windows in ruby and blue colours were completed first. The most difficult technical challenge was lead light glass for the semi-circular domed ceiling over the ark. The design was worked in ruby, blue, lemon and green. The effect of the light through this window was dramatic and symbolic, as the eye was instinctively drawn towards the heavens. The acoustics of the building were considered superb. They were put to the test at the dedication service in November 1885. Edward acted as choirmaster for the occasion and his son Alfred officiated as organist. The synagogue was filled to capacity, with representatives from most denominations joining the Jewish community for the event.[ii]

View of Former Synagogue from Bowen Avenue Image Bartley Family Archive
Edward's churches, large and small, reflect the values of their religious communities. He used the Gothic idiom with great confidence for his Protestant churches. Whenever possible he used local timbers to keep costs to a minimum. He then turned this restriction to best advantage by exploiting the aesthetic benefits of the wood. His churches were highly ornamented, in keeping with the Gothic style but the interiors display a restraint appropriated to their denominations. His Synagogue is successful because it too celebrates the faith for which it was to be a focal point. The origins of the faith are suggested by the exterior design and surfaces and reinforced by his use of a dome over the Ark. Light and acoustics are controlled by the design in order to enhance a sense of occasion and awe.

[i] New Zealand Herald 12 August 1884 page 4 col.7
[ii] The Synagogue building remains in Princes St, now used by the University of Auckland.

Historic Places Trust listing at: See Historic Places Trust Magazine Nov 1998 pages 23-26

See also Cyclopedia of NZ Vol II 1902 page 237; AWN 27 Dec 1884 Sup. pages 1 & 3; NZH 12 August 1884 p 4 col. 7, 2 Sept 1884 p 5 col. 1, 12 Sept 1885 p 3 col. 1, 9 Oct 1885 p 6 col. 1, 10 Nov 1885 p 3 col. 6-8, 19 Nov 1884 p 6 col. 4-6

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Blind Institute Parnell Auckland

In 1909 Edward Bartley was aged 70. He was at last enjoying a particularly buoyant economic climate for architects. Not since the early 1880's had Auckland seen such a level of public works and new construction in the commercial area of the city. This reflected a more general confidence in the economy as a whole and Aucklanders enjoyed a higher standard of living in 1908- 1914 than they were to achieve for quite some time afterwards.

The brick building Edward designed for the Royal Institute for the Blind in Parnell is familiar in Auckland. Less well known is the fact that Edward's relationship with the Institute, both personally and professionally, preceded that building by many years.
In 1890 the Jubilee celebrations in Auckland had been completed with a surplus of  £155. It was suggested that this surplus should be used to establish an Institute for the Blind. 
The object of the proposed institution was to provide basic education and instruction in a craft or skill to enable the blind to earn their own living. The example of the Liverpool Blind Asylum was held up as a model. In 1891 the Institute moved to property at the Parnell end of Manukau Rd which was altered to suit.
Additional ground beside the school was purchased. This allowed the executive to agree to construct a school room, gymnasium, male dormitory and new sanitary areas for the rapidly growing student body now in residence.
 Edward prepared plans for these additions.  The gymnasium and the larger workshop were deferred for the time being but the decision was made to proceed with the other new buildings, along with the suggested fire precautions and improved water supply.
The additions were opened in August 1892 and featured wide verandahs on the whole of the north side of each block. The boys’ dormitory was considered  generous - a room 32 x 55 feett was divided internally into four rooms, each with four beds.
 About this time the Institute Executive was attacked via Letters to the Editor accusing the gentlemen concerned of self  promotion and cynical charitable gesturing.
Edward felt strongly enough to reply swiftly in an angry defence of the organisation and the aims of the Institute: 
NZ Herald 25 August 1892
By 1898 the school had outgrown the existing buildings. Fire safety was still a major concern. The Auckland members of the Legislative Council were canvassed to approach the Premier for £5000 to erect the main block required. While this lobbying was under way the inevitable happened. 
On 7 October 1898 fire broke out at the Blind Institute. Starting in the outbuildings the fire was contained before it reached the main block, mainly due to the availability of town supply water at key points on the premises. Edward’s first designs for a two storey brick building date from this time. 
It was not until 1905 that plans for a masonry building could be realised. A Government subsidy of £2500, along with a further bequest, enabled Edward's design to be accepted. The foundation stone was laid in 1907. The building was opened in May 1909. 
Construction was of brick, primarily as a fire precaution, but also because the material suited the style the Institute required. The building featured a number of technical innovations. Most notable was the first floor construction, where steel and concrete slab were used, with a more traditional tongue & groove timber top surface. A verandah surrounded both floors on all sides and the verandah doors incorporated another new device whereby the doors were hung on the inside but opened to the outside, allowing full use of all the verandah space without obstruction in the doorway.
 Inside the concrete stairways were adorned with very decorative cast iron railings. These balustrades were much admired at the time of the opening in 1909, and continue to be regarded as fine examples of the use of this type of decorative work. 

[i] NZH 17 September 1901

See also New Zealand Herald 10 July 1890 p 5 col 5 & 6; 8 Oct 1898 p 5 col 1; 11 Nov 1898 p 6 col 4; 17 Sept 1901 p 5 col 2; 25 Oct 1901 p 5 col 5; 9 Jan 1903 p 7 col 1; 9 Sept 1905 p 5 col 1; 4 Oct 1905 p 6 col 4 & p 4 col 6; 22 Mar 1906 p 6 col 3; 16 Aug 1906 p 8 col 6;3 Oct 1906 p 8 col 8; 17 Nov 1906 p 5 col 6; 2 May 1907 p 6 col 2; 16 July 1907 p 7 col 2

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Horse Racing on Ruakaka Beach

Image TVNZ 2 Aug 2014 with thanks

I was interested to see the angle taken in recent media coverage of horses on Ruakaka Beach.
No account was taken there of the district’s long association with equine sports. Nor was any mention made of the great fondness which the majority of residents have for their neighbouring stables and racetrack.
It may interest readers to know how long horses have enjoyed the use of Ruakaka beach. 
Historically Ruakaka has been synonymous with racing as this report from 1875 shows.

 NZ Herald 14 January 1875

New Heritage Rating in Lower Queen St Auckland - Hannken Drapery

There was heritage news of interest to Bartley/Hannken descendants this week. The former Graham and Co building at 104-106 Queen St, Auckland has been given a Category 1 rating.

Frederick HANNKEN father of Edward Bartley’s wife Elizabeth owned a drapery store in this part of Queen St from 1850. Although the Hannken’s premises predates the Graham building and is now destroyed, this block of Queen St features strongly in family reminiscences.

Philip Hannken (1858-1940) wrote his reminiscences in 1935. He chose to take his readers on a walk around his childhood surroundings:[ii]
My parents had a drapery shop in Queen St…let us stroll up the street and see who are our neighbours. Next door is Connel and Riding’s auction rooms and above that Mrs Pollock’s butcher shop…There was also a large butchery in this block at one time – Dornwell’s…Above Dornwell’s was a small barber shop. The tonsorial artists was known as the Mt Eden barber; it was said if they were short of a good barber in Mt Eden Gaol the police would run him in and so he received the above name, which he in no way resented, but when he got his freedom he was often heard complaining of the state of the tools of his trade as he found them at his country residence….My grandmother [Eliza NICOLLE then RAMPLING] had a grocery shop just around the corner in Wyndham St.
A young Philip Hannken. Image from the Steven Album, BFA

The Hannken family had lived previously in the Coromandel, having arrived in the Bay of Islands in 1839. They were all familiar with the language, customs and requirements of their customers.
Elizabeth Hannken, later Bartley, recalled:
After a few years in Auckland Father opened a business in Queen Street on a portion of the site now occupied by the Bank of New Zealand, and as the nature of his business brought us in close touch with the Maoris, we all became good native scholars, which added greatly to the success of the business.
Father used to employ many of the soldier’s wives sewing and making gowns for the Maori women and as the soldier’s pay was very small, the women were glad of the opportunity of earning a little, although they only received sixpence per gown for their labour.[i]

Elizabeth Hannken, wife of Edward Bartley. Image BFA

Auckland’s smart retail precinct had developed along the eastern side of the town, largely due to the geographical features. Fred Hannken chose his western site with an eye to developing his existing business contacts and exploiting his former profession of tailor at the same time.
 Like his mother in law around the corner in Wyndham St, Fred Hannken was able to take advantage of the close proximity to the native and settler customers coming from the wharf nearby. He also had a developing market from the new housing precincts appearing on Auckland’s western side.
The site of Graham and Co recently listed has then a much longer association with drapery and Manchester than the 1860’s.

One of the disadvantages of this part of Queen St was that it was on the ‘wrong side’ of the Ligar Canal. This was the Horutu Creek, contained by a culvert, which ran down Queen St to the harbour. By 1850 when the Hannken Drapery opened that culvert was boarded over. It was still used as a sewer and would continue to be so for many years, constituting a serious nuisance to public health.
Philip Hannken fell into that creek as a toddler, so the state of the planks covering the menace can be imagined.
At the time we speak of this lower part of Queen St was a rough and ready thoroughfare. Like most of the roads it had no seal. The quagmire in winter made both trade and travel challenging. Joe Hannken records a family recollection: a bundle of spades that was dropped in the muddy street while being unloaded from a cart outside the Hannken shop, which was not discovered until many years later when the road was being dug up for relaying.[iii]

Moving from the Hannken store in the opposite direction, the nearest neighbour was the Partington Store. This premises was owned by the same firm which owned the landmark windmill on the Auckland sky line. Philip Hannken recalled:
 we children had every reason to remember that store for we were often regaled in there with a biscuit as large as a cheese plate and well covered with either currants or dark brown sugar. Next to Partington’s and on the corner of West Queen St [now Swanson St] stood Gundry’s chemist shop. Going up West Queen St we find Christopher’s grocery store, their yard forming the back boundary to our place.
The 1860s brought a vast change to the character of Auckland. The population increased significantly and became characterised by military presence. This militarisation, along with the wider regional conflicts, adversely affected the Hannken’s business interests.
In 1865 construction began on the BNZ building next door to their drapery. The bank was first erected four bays wide. Later extensions resulted in the demolishing of the wooden structures adjacent, one of which was the Hannken premises. In 1866, due in part to that construction,  the family business moved to northern Shortland St.[iv]

This photo can probably be dated to the 1870's.  It shows the former Hannken drapery in the centre dwarfed by its new neighbour, the Bank of New Zealand.  Photo donated by Hannken family, BFA
New register information for 104-106 Queen St can be found here:

[i] Reminiscences of Elizabeth Bartley manuscript on file BFA
[ii] Reminiscences of Auckland 1858-1880, Philip F Hannken
[iv] Mitchell & Seffern Directory of Auckland 1866-67