Events In History


The 1912 Waihi strike

  • The 1912 Waihi strike

    On 'Black Tuesday', 12 November 1912, in the midst of a bitter six-month strike by miners in the small New Zealand goldmining town of Waihi, striker Fred Evans was killed - one of only two fatalities in an industrial dispute in New Zealand's history.

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  • Page 2 – Further information

    Find out more about the Waihi Strike

The 1951 waterfront dispute

  • The 1951 waterfront dispute

    The 1951 waterfront dispute was the biggest industrial confrontation in New Zealand’s history. Although it was not as violent as the Great Strike of 1913, it lasted longer – 151 days, from February to July – and involved more workers.

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  • Page 2 – Countdown to confrontation

    New Zealanders generally accepted the hardships and restrictions of the war years as necessary in the fight against fascism. After the war, though, many began to demand a

  • Page 3 – War on the wharves

    With New Zealand’s vital export trade at stake when the wharves came to a standstill, the government declared a state of emergency on 21 February.

  • Page 4 – Division and defeat

    The watersiders’ militancy had isolated them from most unionists and Walter Nash’s Labour Party Opposition sat uncomfortably on the fence, denouncing government repression but

Cook Strait rail ferries

  • Cook Strait rail ferries

    On a fine, calm day ‘Cruising on the Interislander’ can be like a luxury Mediterranean cruise. But on a bad day Cook Strait can be one of the world's roughest stretches of water: seasickness, dodgy food and wildcat strikes have all been part of the colourful Cook Strait ferry story.

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  • Page 6 - Strikes and strandingsCook Strait ferries were vital to the flow of freight and passengers between the North and South islands, and  interruptions because of bad weather, mechanical problems or