Waiheke Island Historical Society

P O Box 206, Ostend, Waiheke Island 1843, New Zealand

About us


In memory of the last of
the Awaawaroa farmers

Colin Gordon

Colin Gordon
1932 – 2021

Covid-19 Disruptions

Museum closure

With the return of the Auckland area to Covid-19 alert level 4, the Museum of Waiheke will be closed to the public at least until we return to level 2. Stay tuned to this website or to our Facebook page for further developments, and see our Covid-19 closure policy below.

Public events and news

Republication of Waiheke Pioneers

Dixie Day’s book Waiheke Pioneers, the standard reference for early European settlement on Waiheke, has been out of print for four years, but we are planning to publish a second edition in late 2021. And good news! The Waiheke Local Board has approved a Quick Response grant to the Historical Society for this purpose. Thank you Local Board!

Waiheke Local Board logo

Tanya Batt and Peter Forster

presented their acclaimed show Mary Bumby’s Hive of Story about the woman who brought the bumblebee to New Zealand in 1839. The show took place at the Museum of Waiheke on Saturday, 13 March 2021, and raised $540 for the Historical Society.

Thank you Tanya and Peter for your generous support!

Mary Bumby's Hive of Story

Goodwin Cottage handrail

Goodwin Cottage handrail, thanks to Paul Wise

Thanks to island handyman Paul Wise, the steps up to Goodwin Cottage now have a handrail to help our disabled visitors enter the cottage. Paul is also responsible for the brick edging that now graces the pathways between cottages. Thank you Paul!

We’re featured on the Sealink Roadtrip

Our Museum is featured on Sealink’s Art & Culture Roadtrip. Have a look!

The History Quiz

That’s right — a trivia quiz with no science, no rugby, no Hollywood! We plan on making it a regular event for the Historical Society. Members and non-members welcome.

Wharf2Wharf Fun Run

Saturday, 14 March 2020


Once again, our Museum provided water to passing runners. Sadly, the 2021 race has been cancelled due to the pandemic. Come join us next year!

Members’ section

Annual General Meeting
was held on Sunday, 11 April 2021, at 2PM at the Museum. Proposed changes to our constitution were approved.
Featured speaker: Logan Moss described the Museum’s new archives.
(Read the minutes.)

New members always welcome!

Newsletters & Minutes

History of the Society



How to join

For history buffs
and researchers

Waiheke Vintage & Historic Photos
Peter Young’s Facebook page on Waiheke history

Early History of Waiheke Island

A missionary on Waiheke Island in 1849

A visit to Waiheke Island in 1858

A Belgian city in Rocky Bay?

Surfdale memories from the 1940s

The Waiheke Fun-Map (1948)

The 1922 subdivision of the Matiatia-Oneroa Estate

Cemetery transcriptions

1881 electoral roll

1893 women’s electoral roll

Under construction...
The following are coming soon:

Waiheke genealogy

Waiheke land owners in 1914

Directory of Waiheke residents in 1948



The Museum of Waiheke

and Historic Village


The Museum of Waiheke and Historic Village

Experience a slice of Old Waiheke at the Waiheke Museum and Historic Village.

  • A reconstructed woolshed housing the Museum’s main exhibits
  • A 1930s-style island cottage (Day Cottage) that can be used as a meeting room
  • Three small bach-style houses (Champion, Keane, and Goodwin cottages) with period rooms and photo exhibits
  • A working, manually-operated telephone exchange
  • The original Waiheke jail
  • Being developed: The Taonga Heritage Gardens
  • Maori artifacts, a wool press, a whale-oil cauldron, a player piano, and even a fine old long-drop toilet! (No, not in actual use; we have modern ones for visitors.)

The Museum is located at 165 Onetangi Straight, Waiheke Island, and is open from 11 AM to 3 PM on Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays, and public holiday Mondays, all year round (except Christmas Day and New Year’s Day). Entry is by donation; we suggest $3 per person.

How to find us

Covid-19 closure policy

In accordance with New Zealand rules regarding the response of public venues to the various alert levels during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Museum of Waiheke will observe the following policy:

  • Alert levels 4 and 3: Closed to the public.
  • Alert level 2: Open only when we have volunteers willing to do so. No more than ten visitors are allowed at a time, and all must maintain physical distancing. (We have several buildings so this should not be a problem.)
  • Alert level 1: Open for business as usual.

At all levels visitors are required to sign in either by scanning the QR code (posted at the door) with the Covid-19 Tracer App, or by manually signing the contact tracing sheet on the table by the door. Hand sanitiser and toilets with soap and water are always available. Good hygiene practices are a must, such as coughing into your elbow and staying home if you are feeling unwell. Thank you for your cooperation.

Volunteers Needed -- can you help?

Take a tour of the Museum buildings

The aerial view below is courtesy of Google Maps. Click on any building for more information.

Aerial view of Waiheke Museum Keane Cottage Champion Cottage Goodwin Cottage New Woolshed Police cell Day Cottage

All suggestions regarding this site are welcome. Contact Mark James on 9973 or by E-mail at tmarkjames@yahoo.com.

This page was created on 3 April 2007 and was last modified on 2 September 2021.