Lounge on the Captain Cook immigrant ship

Lounge on the Captain Cook immigrant ship

The corridor lounge on the port side of the Captain Cook. 

The Captain Cook brought assisted immigrants to New Zealand via the Panama Canal from 1952 to 1960.  See Wikipedia entry and community contributions below for more information.

Community contributions

166 comments have been posted about Lounge on the Captain Cook immigrant ship

What do you know?

Betty Mileham nee Wilson

Posted: 05 Apr 2015

I had my 18th birthday on TSS Captain Cook, traveling alone sailed from Glasgow 13th April 1954 arrived Wellington 19th May; crossed the line 2nd May. I remember going to the mission to seamen in Curacao, I think it was a Sunday. Shared a cabin with Mary McNeil and Margaret McCaffrey.

Geraldine Hughes

Posted: 26 Mar 2015

I came to NZ with my parents on the Captain Cook, leaving Glasgow on 10th February 1959. Does anyone know the date that voyage arrived in Wellington? I was less than 2 years old and have no memories of the voyage but do have a couple of photos - one of me in a Santa suit at, I believe the fancy dress party crossing the equator! I would love any info about this particular voyage or if anyone recalls my family. My father was Irish and my mother, English, they were Brendan and Phyllis Hughes

Jimmy Duncan

Posted: 02 Mar 2015

Did anyone come on the sailing that arrived in Wellington on St Patricks Day 1959 which I believe may have been the second to last voyage before it was taken off. Reading some of the other comments has brought back a lot of memories. We sailed when I was nine years old and remember having to spend some time at school learning about the Maoris and the earthquakes. I remember also the crossing of the equator ceremony with King Neptune and being dunked in the pool.The other memory I have is looking over the side of the ship in Panama and seeing a sea of black faces.....an unusual sight if you had spent your formative years only ever in Dundee.
Our family was 'nominated' by my uncle and Dad had to work in a prearranged job for a period of two years. We were a family of four . Unfortunately my Mum and sister became terribly seasick on the journey and spent some time in the hospital.Meanwhile I learnt to play table tennis .
We crossed Cook Straight In the Maori (and got a badge) and travelled on the train from Lyttelton to the now gone railway station in Christchurch. From there we were collected by my uncle in his 'Rugby' car. My sister and I then went to a new primary school in Hoon Hay and I remember the freedom we had both in the classroom and out in the acres of grass. It was wonderful! My parents (92 & 86) and sister still live in Christchurch but I moved to Dunedin with my family in 1986.


Posted: 16 Jan 2015

Does anyone know any Telecoms Engineers who trained in Christchurch 1959 to 1961.

1959, My Dad TERRY O'NEILL (Irish) traveled on Captain Cook from Glasgow to Wellington. He went as a result of a job advertising for Telephone Engineers (Any Pictures?)
(this advert was given to him by the Night Porter in Cadburys Birmingham who reckoned he was too young to be doing night shifts where he worked making the boxes for the chocolates).
He remembers there were 5 lads who went to train in Auckland and 5 in Christchurch.
Once he settled he sent for his girlfriend who he left behind in Birmingham.
They married in Christchurch NZ, my eldest brother was born there.
They returned to Ireland once the 2 years were completed.
My Dad continued his work in Telecoms in Ireland all his life. My Mum always worked as a waitress.
My parents returned to Christchurch just after the earthquake to find their marital church badly damaged.


Posted: 02 Dec 2014

Has anyone else had trouble getting a passport/proving citizenship after coming over from Britain as a child? Did you need to apply for citizenship by grant or citizenship by descent? Having real trouble figuring out how to prove citizenship to get a passport, after 59 years in NZ.

Barbara (Barbie) Giles (nee Smith)

Posted: 06 Nov 2014

Laurie, My Mum and Dad sister Susan and myself Barbara Smith were on the Captain Cook and arrived in Wellington on the 27th March 1956 and docked on the 28th and I believe we left the ship on the 29th march. Dad came and worked with the Ministry Of Works
as a builder. Can contact me as my parents must of got to know you. 0212020020 NZ


Posted: 01 Aug 2014

We left Glasgow in October 1957. I was 6 years old. I can still remember the smell of the coal and oil as we stood on the deck of the Captain Cook waving to people on the dock as we set sail.

Can anyone tell me which dock we sailed from?

Donaldson Line had Yorkhill Quay as its home but some early photos show the Donaldson funnels on the other side of the river too.

I can also remember my mum being worried that dad wouldn't make it back from London in time for the sailing. We were in the shed on the quay, mum me and my two brothers aged 4 and 2.

Dad had joined the RNZAF and had to go down to London to finalise things.

I think the train brought him and a few other airforce people back to somewhere very close to the boat.

I know my mother was very relieved to see him back.
Rick Paterson

Dave Bryson

Posted: 19 Jun 2014

Answer to Bob Cotti....I was a crew member during that period. We were leaving Wellington light ship when we were told to proceed to Djakarta to pick up refugees who were being deported back to Holland most of us were unaware of the situation which was taking place in Indonesia at that time under President Sukarno. We really had a mixed bag of people on board. Many had been separated from loved ones and others were confused at the prospect of moving to another part of the world. We repeated this again in '58 after another run to NZ.

Bob Lindsay

Posted: 02 Jun 2014

I arrived in Wellington nz on ss Captain Cook June 59 my name is Bob Lindsay I came with mum Carrie dad Albert and two brothers Albert and Jackie. Now live in mangere bridge auckland