Skip to main content


Showing posts from March, 2011

1942 Earthquake: Other townships damaged

Evening Post, 26 June 1942

Carterton and Greytown did not escape.

In Carterton, the Post Office was knocked about, and was roped off. The clock had stopped at 11.20.

The heavy masonry front of a W.F.C.A. store which looked ready to crash into the street at any moment was propped up by timbers while demolition work went on.

In Greytown the whole front of another W.F.C.A. store had tumbled across the footpath and roadway and smashed a petrol pump in the process. Residential damage was confined chiefly to damaged chimneys.

Chimneys were down in Featherston, but compared with other places the damage here was slight. A garage was badly cracked, and a crack showed in the Bank of New Zealand. A chimney on the Bank of Australasia had crashed through the roof.

Source: Papers Past: Evening Post, 26 June 1942

Further reading: A night of terror - the 1942 earthquake

1942 Earthquake: Terror for Residents

Evening Post, 26 June 1942

For the residents of Masterton the 'quake brought a night of unforgettable terror. The shock plunged the place into darkness, and with chimneys crashing on the roofs and tanks toppling, and the terrible uncertainty of what was going to happen next, many people became panic-stricken. Masterton, or the greater part of it, spent the rest of the midwinter night, out of bed, and mostly out of doors.

1942 Earthquake: Masterton's business area badly wrecked

Evening Post, 26 June 1942


Masterton's main street was a sorry sight yesterday.

With huge piles of brick and masonry sprawling across the footpaths and roadway, shattered shop windows, and trailing high-tension lines, the condition of the mile-long thoroughfare was testimony to the intensity of the previous night's earthquake. In the residential areas householders suffered considerable damage to property, and it appears that Masterton took the main shock. Miraculously no casualties of any sort have been reported.

1942 Earthquake: Eketahuna suffers

Evening Post, 26 June 1942
"Although the extent of the damage done in Eketahuna is less than that in Masterton, as it is only a small township, the shock there was definitely more severe than in Masterton, reports the Chief Engineer of the Public Works Department, Mr. W. L. Newnham. "There are no building premises in Eketahuna that have not been badly damaged. The Post Office is unfit for occupation and has been abandoned. A temporary office has been erected. Most of the buildings in the township have been evacuated."
Source: Papers Past: Evening Post, 26 June 1942

Further reading: A night of terror - the 1942 earthquake

1942 Earthquake: Restless night - Further Shocks

Evening Post, 26 June 1942


(P.A.) MASTERTON, This Day.
During the night there were a number of slight tremors and three very sharp shocks. The Prime Minister (Mr. Fraser) inspected earthquake damage in Wairarapa yesterday and expressed admiration and appreciation of the manner in which all concerned had risen to the occasion and of the fine spirit with which the people of the Wairarapa were facing the situation.