The Kaihu Tavern (circa 1899/1900)

I've always been intrigued by this famous old pub in the small settlement of Kaihu, on the road heading to Hokianga. Many stories have been told and many theories about just when it was actually built. It took a lot of research to finally discover just when the old tavern was actually built. Some say it was moved down the hill, and others have it built in 1880. So far I haven't found any evidence at all that proves any of these theories. The nearest hotel at the time before the issue of any hotels in the settlement came into being was the Maropiu Hotel a few miles before what was then known as Opanaki until around 1896, when it was renamed Kaihu.

Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, AWNS-18990707-7-2
Auckland Weekly News 07 JULY 1899 p007 

Kaihu in early July 1899, note there is no building (right foreground) where the Kaihu Tavern is now sited. The church in the midground of the image is St Agnes Catholic Church (1892/93). The Kaihu settlement expanded after the Kaihu Valley Line, was taken over by the government. The line was used to exploit the vast tracts of virgin kauri forests in the surrounding area. In 1894, the government announced the Kaihu special settlement area to assist struggling settlers and establish farming in the area.

Mr G. Mueller, Commissioner of Crown Lands, informs us that, acting undor instructions from the Government, he been given instructions for two bush village settlements of 1,000 acres each .to be laid off on the road route between the Kaihu Valley and Hokianga with a view to giving assistance to struggling settlers and establishing small homesteads. There are about 14 miles of road yet to finish between Opanake and Taheke (Hokianga), and for the present a portion of this will be done by co-operative labour, the men to be employed at bush felling and clearing and also at road making. Each of these section of 1,000 acres will afford bnsh work for about 60 men, and when cleared will be divided into 100 acre sections, which can then be taken up on perpetual lease by 'a number of the men who cleared them. Another section of 1,000 acres in the vicinity will be reserved for a similar purpose though Mr Mueller has as yet received no instructions to throw it open. The whole of the present road works in the North will not absorb more than 30 men from Auckland at present, as the struggling small settlers have the first claim, but Mr Mueller says that he could put a couple of thousand men on absolutely necessary road works in the North if the money were only available.
Auckland Star, Volume XXV, Issue 103, 1 May 1894, Page 5

Kaihu Railway Station yards and settlement (circa 1910s)
Trains at Kaihu railway station. Northwood brothers :
Photographs of Northland. 
Ref: 1/1-006350-G. 
Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. 

Very little existed at Kaihu township (previously named Opanake until 1896) other than the railway yards and the resident maori population. After the government announced the settlement scheme and improved the railway line, the town was transformed into a bustling community

...The train is running to and fro between Dargaville and Kaihu, generally twice or thrice, bringing in long lines of trucks loaded with kauri, to the extent of 40,000 to 60,000 feet a trip. At Kaihu a number of business premises have been built. The new station and post office are nearly completed.... 
Auckland Star, Volume XXVII, Issue 299, 16 December 1896, Page 3

The main part of the settlement was centered around the Kahu Railway station yards. The township was a haven for gumdiggers, kauri bushmen and the resident Maori owners. Kaihu has a unique history which will be investigated further in another post. In this post I'll be looking at the origins of the legendary pub on the road to Hokianga.

The idea of having a public house in the settlement of Kaihu originated in early 1896, when the licensee of the Maropiu Hotel one Samuel Powell, made an application to the Bay of Islands Licensing Court. Powell had applied to transfer the licence from the Maropiu Hotel located south of present day Kaihu) to what was then known as the Opanaki Boarding house. Powell intended to rename the Opanaki Boarding House the Opanaki Hotel.

New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXIII, Issue 10052, 12 February 1896, Page 8

Powell had taken over the Maropiu Hotel license in 1895, from the previous licensee Arthur Dempsey. The hotel which being leased from Netana Patuawa by L.D. Nathan.
LICENSING DISTRICT OF BAY OF ISLANDS.—NOTICE OF APPLICATION FOR TRANSFER OF LICENSE. I, Arthur Dempsey, of Maropiu, being the holder of an Accommodaton License in respect of the house and premises situate at Maropiu. and known as the Maropiu Hotel, do hereby give notice that I desire to obtain and will, at the next Licensing Meeting to beholden at Kawakawa, on the eighth day of March, 1895, apply for a Transfer of the said License from myself to Samuel Powell, of Maropiu aforesaid, my appointee. Dated the third,day of January, 1895.—Arthur Dempsey, Applicant.
New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXII, Issue 9737, 6 February 1895, Page 8 

Licensing district of bay of ISLANDS.-NOTICE OF APPLICATION FOR AN ACCOMMODATION LICENSE.—I. Samuel Powell, of Maropiu. Innkeeper, do hereby give notice that I desire to obtain, and will, at the next Licensing Meeting to be holden at Kawakawa, on the seventh day of June, 1895, apply for a Certificate authorising the issue of an Accommodation License for premises situate at Maropiu, and known as the Maropiu Hotel. Dated the twenty-ninth day of April. 1895. SAMUEL POWELL, Applicant. Name of owner of premises, Netana Patuawa. Name of lessee, Laurence David Nathan.
 New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXII, Issue 9809, 2 May 1895, Page 8

A further investigation into the 1896 application, turned out to be a disappointment for Samuel Powell. He was turned down flat by the Bay of Islands Licensing Committee. A few months later we see him still at the Maropiu Hotel paying a license fee. The article below also shows there was no hotel at Kaihu in existence in 1896. There is a mention of the "Traveller's Rest, Opanake" however that was located at Waima (now Tarawhati), as the article later refers to in the list of license renewals

The annual meeting of the Bay of Islands Licensing Court was held in Kawakawa on June 5, before Messrs. K. Wyles (chairman), J. Shannon, F. Mackenzie, J. Trounsen, R. A. Hall, and G. F. Dickenson. New application: William Hazard, of Peria, Mange nui, applied for an accommodation license. An increase of the number of licensed houses not allowed, therefore application was passed over. Transfers: R. Spencer, of Travellers' Rest, Opanaki, Wairoa, to George Lineham. John Connelly, Settlers' Hotel, Kaeo, to John Jacentho. All granted. Renewals The following accommodation licenses were granted-.—J. B. Taaffe. Redan Hotel, Kaitaia, Mangonui, feo £10; C. Cothard, Masonic Hotel, Whangaroa, fee £15; Geo. Lineham, Travellers' Rest, Waima, fee £10; John Jacentho, Settlers' Hotel, Kaeo, fee £20; J. C. Bindon, Horeke Hotel, Hokianga, fee £5 Robt. Jarvie, Kawerua Hotel, Hokianga, fee £10; A. S. Andrews, Opononi Hotel, Hokianga, fee £5 H. Baskerville, Kohukohu Hotel, Hokianga, fee £20; A. W. Ellis, Masonic Hotel, Rawene. foe £20; J. Ogle, Rangiahua Hotel, Hokianga, fee £10; E. A. Cunningham, Tuheke, Hokianga, fee £10; Win. Woods, Hukerenui Hotel, Bay of Islands, fee £10; R. Marshall, Towai Hotel, Bay of Islands, fee £10; J. Hunter, Mangakahia Hotel, Mangakahia, fee £10; Sam Powell, Maropiu Hotel, Wairoa, fee £10. Hotel licenses, annual fee £25 each, were granted as follows Rogers, Kaihu Hotel, Dargaville; Michael Corcoran, Northern Wairoa Hotel, Dargaville; Fred. T. Howard, Commercial Hotel, Mangawhare M. O'Connor, Aratapu Hotel, Aratapu; Joe Evans, Travellers' Rest, Awanui; P. Shine, Awanui Hotel, Awanui; G. Williams. Settlers' Hotel, Mangonui; H. Littleproud, Mangonui Hotel, Mangonui; H. Pitman, Duke of Marlborough Hotel, Russell M. E. Keatley, Masonic Hotel, Kawakawa C. Reinhnrdt, Junction Hotel, Kawakawa G. H. Brewer, Star Hotel, Kawakawa Frs. W. Shaw, Kaikohe Hotel, KaikoheS. F. Hedlund, Ohaeawai Hotel, Ohaeawai. This was all the business.— [Own Correspondent.]
New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXIII, Issue 10160, 17 June 1896, Page 4

Kaihu Settlement 1907 
Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, AWNS-19070411-13-2

The first successful application to establish a hotel at Kaihu was made by John Johnston in early 1899, when he had applied for an accommodation license for an establishment of "seven rooms" of which the owner was  Moss Davis of Auckland based brewing company Hancock & Co Ltd. The hotel itself was built by Onehunga building company John Rowe and Sons Ltd (New Zealand Herald, Volume LXXII, Issue 22002, 8 January 1935, Page 9)

Auckland Star, Volume XXX, Issue 110, 11 May 1899, Page 3
The application to transfer the hotel license from the Waima Hotel situated around 3 miles (4.8 km) from Kaihu settlement soon sparked the ire of the Temperance movement. Meetings were held across the country with resolutions in turn decreed.  The meeting in Auckland included the Reverend William Gittos:

A public meeting was held on Saturday evening in the Foresters' Hall, Karangahapo Road, to discuss the question of the granting of a publican's license at Kaihu, for which an application will be considered at the next meeting of the Licensing Bench in that district. There was a large attendance, Mr. S. C. Brown occupying the chair, amongst those present being the Revs. W. J. Williams, V. Ready, and Gittos, and Messrs. T. E. Taylor, M.H.K., and Richardson. 
The Chairman said that the object of tho meeting was to enter a strong protest against the granting of a publican's license at Kaihu, for which application was to be made. The Act provided that no license could be removed to new promises if these premises were more than half-a-mile from the premises already licensed. The license in question was three miles from the existing licensed house, and must therefore be regarded as an entirely new license. Whatever the provisions of theAct were if tended to be, the spirit of the law was continually broken since the new Licensing Act came into force. 
At Kaihu there was a large native population. It might be said that this had nothing to do with Europeans, but the Maori, as well as the European, must be protected from the curse of drink. (Applause). Tho Rev. W. . Williams said that these present were anxious to hear what was to be said on tho matter by Mr. T. K. Taylor, M.H.R. for Christchureh—(applause)—who could speak officially on the subject. He read a portion of a letter received from the Rev. S. J. Gibson, who wrote stating that there was a good deal of feeling expressed on the subject of tho Kaihu license, as there were two accommodation licenses within three miles.
The Maoris had drawn up a petition, asking that the district might be made a prohibited one, but had afterwards withdrawn it. He tho speaker) was glad to observe that the Education Board was strongly opposed to tho granting of a license, and that the police had been instructed to oppose it when the applicaion came up. (Applause.)
 He moved, That this meeting, having been informed that it is the intention of Messrs. Hancock and Co. to apply for a publican's license at Kaihu, respectfully urges the Licensing Committee not to grant such license, on the grounds (1) that it is not required; (2) that it contravenes tho law, bing close to the public school and church; (3) that it would demoralise, the natives, large numbers of whom live in tho neighbourhood."
The Rev. W. Gittos seconded, and said that then was no necessity for house in the district, as both the Europeans and Maori settlers protested against it. Mr. T. E. Taylor, who was received with applause, said it was the brewers that they were fighting now, not, the publicans, as was the case a few years ago. Thev had a. duty to perform towards the natives. The police were opposed to the license, but do what they might, unless public opinion stepped in, the license would be granted. He suggested that a deputation from the meeting wait upon the Premier with a resolution, and ask him to have the Act so amended as to leave no opportunity of effecting a transfer as at present. The Chairman did not agree with Mr. Taylor as to the advisability of tending a doputafaon to the Premier. The resolution was then put and carried unanimously, and it was resolved that the following form a deputation to wait on the Right Hon. the Premier:..
New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXVI, Issue 11075, 29 May 1899, Page 3

At the end of May 1899 the Temperance Movement's deputation of the Reverends went in force,and paid the Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Richard Seddon, a visit to discuss with him the evils of the dreaded drink coming into Kaihu. At the Star Hotel in Auckland King Dick Seddon faced a formidable group of men of the cloth with the sole object of puersuading him to veto the future granting of the dreaded Kaihu hotel license.

...The Rev. W. J. Williams said the principal question the deputation wished to bring under the notice of the Premier was that of The application which had been made for a liquor license at Kaihu. There were arguments of considerable strength against the granting of a license in that district. A petition had been sent by the natives at Kaihu asking to have the district proclaimed as a district in which no liquor could be sold. They did not wish a hotel there, but it appeared now that this hotel was to be built on native land. Influence had since been brought to bear on the natives, who had withdrawn the petition asking for the proclamation of the Kaihu as a prohibited district. The deputation now understood that the Government had given the police instructions to oppose the petition for the license.
The Premier: I beg your pardon;. I have not given such instructions to the police. I shall myself be no party to giving instructions to the police after what has been said about the Government in the past. I shall not interfere with the police at all; and, as far as the police are concerned, I have taken no action. However, I believe the Justice Department have taken some action; the police are taking steps, but the Government has not.
Mr Williams said what the deputation wanted was to have the district proclaimed as a native licensing- district, under section 25 of the Act, so that a native assessor would sit with the Licensing-Bench, and his assent would be necessary before a license could be granted, and so that the sale of liquor to natives could be prohibited in the district.
The Rev. W. Gittos said that paternal protection in this direction was needed in the best interests of the natives in the district. He hoped the Government would extend that protection to Ihe natives which was so desirable, and prevent their falling victims to the evils of strong drink. The license for the hotel was to loe transferred from another part of the country.
The Premier said he had received a telegram from Mr Hone Heke. M H R on the subject, nnd the Justice Department had advised him that the proposed hotel was to be erected on land held by Europeans. 
Mr Williams said that according to his latest information it had been decked to build the hotel on native land.
The Premier said that if that were so it would alter the aspect of the case. However he would enquire into it and get the latest information. The deputation knew his views on the question of liquor amongst the natives. He considered it was inimical to them as a race, and it was not to the merit of the colony to have liquor amongst them. His legislation had been in the direction of stopping the harm done by liquor amongst them, and he instanced the fact of the Government, having stopped the sale of liquor to Maori women. But he did not think the law was intended to set apart, special areas in various places in the way in which the deputation would like it done. The Government would not be a party to interference with the administration of the Licensing Act.  Such a thing would be reprehensible, and the Government had not done it! 
The prohibition party had made complaints that the Government had done so in the past, and yet now they come and asked him to interfere. There would be no interference with the police on the part of the Government to say object to or support an application. The police were the best judges of a case themselves the Government never had interfered.
Regarding the proclamation of a district, if the hotel was on land owned by Europeans the Government could not interfere. In these transfers of licenses a way had been discovered of evading the law, but that happened with many Jaws. They must leave the administration of that law to the licensing bench; and as Native Minister he would do his utmost to protect the native race from what he believed to be inimical to their interests.
Pastor G. T. Bull wished to bring under the notice of the Premier the necessity for bringing the local option under the Corrupt Practices Act. They also wanted legal provisions made for scrutineers in connection with the local option poll. They wottld in addition like uniform instructions issued to returning officers regarding the poll.
The Premier returned a favourable reply to the first request. He said that he would take care to appoint returning officers who were competent and who could construe the Act properly. He wished also to see the local option poll carried out properly, so that a bona fide vote of the people could be. taken, and he wished to see the poll carried out fairly and properly.
In answer to other questions the Premier said he thought the registrars of electors should be liable to a penalty if the electoral rolls were not properly checked, and if people who voted were improperly struck off. The Government had given instructions to the registrars of electors to send round and get people placed on the rolls. That was construed into an act of corruption, but he was going to get all the people of the colony put on the rolls no matter what tiheir political views were. There ought to be penalties imposed for careless or incompetent making up of the rolls. After some further conversation the deputation withdrew.
Auckland Star, Volume XXX, Issue 128, 1 June 1899, Page 5

In June, the deputation's efforts were all but defeated. The Bay of Islands Licensing Court granted the licence, another feather in the cap for Hancock & Co Ltd owner Moss Davis as he added another hotel to his growing portfolio of establishments in the Northern Wairoa region.  Davis would, just a mere too years later, be entangled once again in yet another Temperance vs Brewery Company debate. The Maungaturoto Hotel made national headlines over the granting of the license under similar circumstances, with some familiar names in the Temperance movement leading the charge. A rival brewery company it seems, had also objected to Moss Davis owning yet another hotel in an area, where they already had established their public houses.

The Bay of Islands District Licensing Court commenced its sitting yesterday at noon and concluded at midnight. There were present Mr J. S. Clendon. S.M. (chairman), Messrs H. A. Hall, John Trounsen; G. F: Dickeson, and F. Mackenzie. The applications of twenty-seven licensed houses in the district were all granted, with the exception of the Wairna Accommodation House, three miles away from Kaihu, and the Masonic Hotel, at Kawakawa, which were abandoned.
After hearing the applications for a house at Hohoura, twenty-five- miles from Awanui, what might be termed the great fight for a hotel,at Kaih,u took place. This was vigorously opposed by Mr M. A. McLeod, solicitor, of Dargaville, and the police. A large number of witnesses on both side were examined. Mr Blomfield, of Kawakawa, who was for the applicants, Messrs Hancock and Co. representing the same. The petition, for the house in question was signed by 250 people. The petition against was a small affair, while the native chiefs and residents-had withdrawn all opposition. 
The Rev. Gittos and others (especially prohibitionists) spoke against the new introduction, but in the opinion of the majority of the bench it was thought better to grant the application and so sweep away, extensive sly grog selling. The native population were, said to be entirely in favour of the granting of the license, and now express full satisfaction with the arrangements made with them re the sale of liquor, over which they have the right of veto.
Auckland Star, Volume xxx, Issue 136, 10 June 1899, Page 5

The hotel mentioned at Waima was not the Hokianga Waima on the modern maps. Waima was later renamed Tarawhati. At the time of the licence debacle, there were two hotels within a short distance of Kaihu. The Waima hotel was known by the sign of The Traveller's Rest, and the second establishment at Maropiu south of Kaihu was called the Maropiu Hotel. Both hotels no longer exist.

Some time between the time of the granting of the license and 1900, the Opanaki Hotel was built. John Johnston's application mentions the building as having seven rooms excluding those used for the family. It's possible that the initial first stage of the hotel was completed within a short time frame. The architect Moss Davis mainly used for the design of his Northland Hotels was the prominent John Currie of Auckland. Despite a search for tenders for the construction of the new hotel, at this stage I can't locate any. It was the same for the Maungaturoto Hotel, which was constructed in pre-fabrication form down at the yards of J. Rowe & Sons builders of Onehunga. The July 1899 image of the birds eye view of the Kaihy settlement shows no indication of any building being present. As an aside it's interesting to note that Edwin Mitchelson's timber sawmilling company had already established itself in the area. He was also present at the opening of Hancock & Co's new brewery in Auckland, which was also designed by John Currie. It's a possibility Mitchelson's company constructed the hotel on site for Davis. For now that remains purely a speculation on my part.

BAY OF ISLANDS LICENSING DISTRICT.— NOTICE OF APPLICATION FOR A PUBLICAN'S LICENSE.—I, JANE EDMUNDS, of Kaihu, Hotelkeeper, do hereby give notice that I desire to obtain, and will at the next Licensing Meeting to beholden at Kawakawa, in the Courthouse, on the 5th day of June, 1901, apply for a certificate authorising the issue of a Publican's License for a house situate at Kaihu, and known by the sign of the Opunake Hotel, containing 16 rooms, exclusive of those required for the use of the family. Hancock and Co., name of owners. Dated the 1st day of May, 1901. JANE EDMUNDS, signature of Applicant.
Page 3 Advertisements Column 6
Auckland Star, Volume XXXII, Issue 107, 7 May 1901, Page 3

During 1900, John Johnston the publican passed away at the Northern Wairoa Hosptial leaving his wife Josephine to deal with both the running of the hotel and the mounting debts left behind. She appointed her mother  Jane Edmunds to take over the publican's license (by then the hotel had 16 rooms) on June 9, 1901 (her application by public notice was in May 1901). A large amount of debt was built up during Edmunds tenure as publican. Finally a creditor petition in March 1902, led to Josephine Johston's subsequent bankruptcy, and the repossession of the hotel by Hancock & Co Ltd. The creditor's meeting was long and drawn out with Johnston accusiing Moss Davis of taking her possessions. Davis returned with a long reply which eventually had satisfied the hearing members. (New Zealand Herald,  19 March 1902)

                                                                Advertisement New Zealand Herald 8th May 1902

With Johnston bankrupt, the publican's license of the hotel was then taken over by Benjamin Cossey in June 1902. The number of rooms it seems had increased from the sixteen mentioned in Jane Edmund's application to a significant 20 rooms in Cossey's.
Granted; fee, £10. B. Cossey, Opanaki Hotel, Kaihu—Granted upon the applicant undertaking to put up fixed lamp and repair pane of glass.
New Zealand Herald, Volume XL, Issue 12292, 9 June 1903, Page 6

There is one institution in Kaihu which, at its inception, caused a wave of excitement amongst a large section of the population, and that is the Opanaki hotel. When those interested in the matter first conceived the idea of having a publicans' license transferred from Hokianga (the writer had the wrong Waima) to Wairoa, the trouble began, and it was not confined to the district responsible for the disturbance. Public meetings were held in Auckland and elsewhere to protest against the movement, the assistance of our legislators was invoked to veto the proposal, and for a time a battle royal ensued between the temperance and the brewer sections, with the result that Kaihu has a commodious and well-appointed hostelry which is dominated not only by a licensing bench, but by the native owners of the property, who at any time may issue a prohibitory mandate against any Maori being supplied with liquor. The system has worked admirably, and I am told that natives seldom visit the hotel.
Auckland Star, Volume XXXVIII, Issue 301, 18 December 1907, Page 6

The Kaihu Tavern circa 1916-1920
Kaihu. Northwood brothers :Photographs of Northland.
 Ref: 1/1-010701-G. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand.

Renewals of licenses were granted as follow at the annual meeting of the Kaipara Licensing Committee —Aratapu hotel, M O'Connor; Central hotel, H. Dyer; Kaipara hotel, T. McEwin Northern Wairoa hotel, F. C. Bass Pahi hotel, J. Ryan Opanaki hotel. G. Meale; Bridge hotel, T. P. Gray...                                            Northern Advocate , 11 June 1910, Page 4

By 1910, the hotel had a new publican, one G Meale, who stayed on at the hotel for some time despite some trouble he ran into with some of the local residents.
During New Year's Eve and. early on New Year's morning a number of maoris turned themselves loose in Kaihu, where  there is, no resident police, and caused  considerable annoyance, as well. as, damage. As a sequel, a number of natives were  brought before the court this afternoon, and charged with damaging property belonging to Mr. Meale, licensee of the Opanaki Hotel,  All the accused pleaded not guilty. Constable Thompson stated that every year  the same unpleasant conditions prevailed, and instead of the residents welcoming the New Year, they feared it, owing to the conduct of these native parasites, who usually did a lot of damage. A considerable amount of. evidence was adduced, but only two of the accused were proved to have been present on the occasion, and they were each fined £2 and costs totalling altogether over £6. Time was given to pay the fines,but the company scraped up the amount and wiped off the cost of their New Year's Eve escapade at Kaihu.
 Auckland Star, Volume XLI, Issue 12, 14 January 1910, Page 2

Meale remained at the renamed "Kaihu Hotel" (1914), until around 1915/16. In 1916, the hotel was taken over by Harold Kennedy Simpson (Kaipara and Waitemata Echo , 24 June 1916). At some point after 1916, the hotel came under the care of the colourful Albert Docherty. By 1925, he was in trouble with the Inland Revenue Department for not furnishing four years worth of tax returns. The result being he was taken to court and fined for his lack of effort (Auckland Star, 29 May 1925). With the opening of the Waipoua road in January 1928, the Kaihu Hotel became a tourist destination. Docherty had a collection of kauri gum, and other strange curios be had on display in the hotel.

Later on Kaihu Hotel will cater to your requirements, and the proprietor will show you a wonderful assortment of native curios and gum specimens the equal of many of which you have never seen before.
Auckland Star, Volume LIX, Issue 281, 27 November 1928, Page 16 

In 1930, Docherty was once again on the wrong side of the law, after selling beer on a Sunday. 
Mr. G. N. V. Docherty, licensee of the Kaihu Hotel, pleaded gnilty to a charge of supplying liquor after hours to .five Maoris. Mr Capp, who appeared for the police, asked that, two additional charges arising: ontof the same offence be withdrawn. Docherty was fined £3 and costs 12/. W. A Hallmond, the driver of the car containing the Maoris, was fined 20/ and costs for being on licensed premises after hours. The passengers m the car, Walter Andrew, George Hayward, Ranga Tau, Joe Witihera and P. Reihana, all of Rawene, were fined 20/ and costs.
Auckland Star, Volume LXI, Issue 152, 30 June 1930, Page 19

Docherty added to his collection of curiosties when someone had shot an usually marked Pukeko dubbed "The Coronation Pukeko"

Coronation Pukeko. A bird destined to have a future as a museum specimen and one which has been aptly named "the Coronation pukeko." was recently shot at Mareretu, writes the "Star's" Whangarei correspondent. The bird, which was shot on Coronation Day, bears in its plumage the national colours—blue and white breast, and a red coronet. Its wings are dark black, but the feathers on the back are mostly a pure white. The general effect is one of striking beauty. The rare bird has been forwarded to the private museum of Mr. A. V. Docherty, licensee of the Kaihu Hotel. Endeavours are being made to secure the novelty for show at the Whangarei Winter Exhibition.
Auckland Star, Volume LXVIII, Issue 126, 29 May 1937, Page 8

The very last mention of the hotel or Albert Doherty in Papers Past is in the year 1942, when he had to attend the sad suicide of a school teacher residing at his hotel

DARGAVILLE, Sept. 23. Angus Ross, teacher, who was recently appointed to the Maropiu School ana arrived in the district yesterday, was found dead this morning in his room at the Kaihu Hotel by the licensee, Mr. A. V. Docherty. Mr. Ross, who was between 40 and 45 years of age, was a married man, with his wife resident at Brown's Bay, Auckland, and two sons attending secondary school. When discovered, Ross had a revolver in his hand. An inquest was opened and adjourned.
Evening Post, Volume CXXXIV, Issue 75, 25 September 1942, Page 3

According to the blog post "Kaihu Tavern:" (14 October 2009) of  artist and author Don Donovan, Albert Docherty and his strange museum remained at the hotel until 1951.

"The most famous landlord was Albert Docherty who bought the pub in 1917. Like Bill Evans of Houhora, he was a man of many parts: hire-car operator, ambulance driver, nurse, athlete, cyclist, trophy hunter… he built a famous collection of kauri gum which adorned his main bar along with curiosities such as a two-headed calf, a four-legged chicken, a hair-ball from a cow’s stomach, several deer’s heads, stuffed trout, boars’ tusks, and Maori patu and taiaha. It became something of a tourist destination in its own right and was certainly an important stop on the way to Waipoua kauri forest and the Hokianga. The museum went with Albert in 1951. It’s just as well, those bits and pieces are terrible dust traps. Since then the pub has been saner but you can feel the history oozing through the floorboards. "
Don Donovan's World,, Ramblings of a much published New Zealand author
14 October 2009 

Whatever the rest of the old Kaihu Tavern's history may or may not be. It has plenty of stories to tell, and yet another Northland hotel with a Moss Davis connection to add to the list of  headaches for the now long since gone gentlemen of the Temperance movement.  The hotel has since changed its name to the Kaihu Tavern. It is a Category 2 Historic Place on the Register of Historic Places.


GWHawkins said…
Maybe the hotel is older. On the inquest into my great-great grandfather's death in 1878, his brother-in-law stated that the body was brought to the Kaihu Hotel for the purpose of inquest.
Liz said…
Hi GW I'm afraid it isn't. You are referring to the Kaihu Hotel in Dargaville which burned down in 1901 and replaced with what is now known as the Central Hotel. Dargaville was named Kaihu prior to the name change. The Kaihu we now know was originally call Opanake and the name changed to Kaihu in 1896.
GWHawkins said…
OK. Thanks for that! Did not know that.
Liz said…

If you look for the Central Hotel in this blog you will find a blog post there on its history.


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