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Pahiatua Museum


The Pahiatua and Districts Museum Society has an old bay villa chock-full of interesting ephemera reflecting earlier years in Pahiatua and the Tararua District. Established as a museum in 1977, the villa was formerly the home of the local doctor and is largely in original condition, a wonderful glimpse of life in the early 20th century.





A hand-cranked sewing machine and other sewing and knitting equipment reflect a time when New Zealand women - of necessity and as a matter of pride - made all their own clothes for themselves and their families.

Kerosene lamps which may have been used into the 1950s as parts of Tararua and Wairarapa did not have electricity until the 1950s.

A petite and elegant blouse and skirt. The size of the garments would suggest that 19th century women were a lot smaller than their current counterparts.


Clips for crimping hair and old perming rods, possibly dating from the 1950s and earlier.

Toddler shoes.
Some of the extensive damask and fine linens.

A child's boots, dating from 1924, and made by Mr P.H Stapleton, Christchurch.

 Much-loved toy cars from yesteryear.

 Hay rack.
Elderly threadbear teddy, dolls and other toys.

The hallway, showing the elegant archway and extensive photograph collection.

Early photos of roads and new bridges within the Tararua district.

Sepia print of the Wairarapa train climbing the Incline, assisted by three Fell engines.

The kitchen, largely in original condition, showing the wooden sink bench and typical table and chairs.  Under the bench you can see a glimpse of the bins used to store flour and sugar, reflecting the large quantity of baked goods made in every home.

Old cooking utensils which would have been suspended over the kitchen fire.

An old wooden icebox.

 The museum has an excellent collection of books on local history.

A School Journal cover from 1919, one of many interesting old school textbooks.


The Pahiatua Museum is located at 66 Sedcole Street, Pahiatua, and is open from 2-4 pm each Sunday.

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