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Our collection relates to the early history of this region. We have family history books, jubilee books, area history books, manuscripts, photographs, maps, historical society magazines, newspapers, genealogical books, records, and certificates.


Browse the Catalogue of some of the books in the General Collection.

New Additions to The Treasury Collection.

If you had early family in this region, please fill out a Pioneer Family Register Form for us and post it back. You can also scan the form once you have filled it in and email it back to The Treasury. (Please note that there are two pages here to print and fill out.)

Amongst our resources are some important collections:


David was a foundation Trustee of The Coromandel Heritage Trust. The history of the Thames area was his passion and in the last years of his life he made it his full-time work, as a researcher for families looking for their roots, speaking to groups, taking very interesting walking tours of historic Thames around the old areas, cemetery tours, panning for gold, and giving busloads of visitors a day tailor-made to fit their requirements. David entered into the spirit of these trips with great enthusiasm, dressing for the part. He especially loved working with children, to show them their heritage in a meaningful way. David's family have given his lifetime's meticulous research to The Coromandel Heritage Trust, to be housed in The Treasury.
Browse the Catalogue of The David Arbury Collection.


This collection of 150 photos of early Thames includes photos of the early Thames goldfield as well as several of the destruction caused by devastating floods in the early years. There are people, parade days, churches and the High School to name but a few.


Alistair Isdale (1911 - 2001) was a well-known Thames historian for many years. He was the curator of the Mineralogical Museum at the Thames School of Mines. He contributed a column to the local paper, and wrote tirelessly on various aspects of the peninsula in the early years of its development. He was particularly interested in preserving the written history and artefacts of gold mining in the area. He provided many people with reports about their families, and published books as well as articles in historical journals. Many of his manuscripts are in our collection.
Browse the Catalogue of the Alistair Isdale Manuscripts.

A rare copy of the original printing
of Alistair Isdale's 1967 book which
had a print run of 5000 copies.
It was reprinted in 1990.


We have a small but growing collection of the documents of Mr T. W. (Toss) Hammond M.B.E. He was an important local historian whose interests included the early days of the goldfields and Maori history and culture of the pre-European days. He was born in Thames in 1869, at the beginning of the goldrush and died in 1967 at the age of 98 years.


We would like to acknowledge the very generous donation by Dr Robert Oxner of a magnificent collection of books about the life of Captain James Cook, his voyages, his crew, their finds. This includes wonderful watercolour paintings of botanical specimens, early maps, dairies, biographies. It would be hard to find a better collection. Cook arrived in Mercury Bay on 15 November 1769, and reached Kopu by the 20th, naming the river The Thames. This collection will be a great asset to all early New Zealand historical research.
Browse the Catalogue of the Robert Oxner Collection.


The Pioneer Family Register is a collection of forms filled in by people with early family in this region, under the umbrella of The Hauraki Thames Indexing Group. We have had an amazing response to this project, with forms arriving from all over New Zealand, and from overseas. Frequently people have sent in extra information, or provided a photoand these are filed separately. Some have sent in family history books as well.

The forms contain much interesting information about our early settlers - where they came from, the boat they came out on, their interests, their children's names, as well as the dates for these events where known. On the reverse side is the name of the person submitting this information - so a family researcher wanting more information has the address of someone to contact.
If you had early family in this region, please fill out a Pioneer Family Register Form for us and post it back. You can also scan the form once you have filled it in and email it back to The Treasury. (Please note that there are two pages here to print and fill out.) Forms are also available from The Treasury or by writing directly to the Coromandel Heritage Trust, PO Box 75, Thames 3540, New Zealand.

Recently received Pioneer Register Forms:

The Anderton/Dihars family of Thames
The Brideson/Campbell family of Coromandel, Thames & Karangahake
The Buckland/Slanter family of Thames
The Burch/Cartwright family of Thames & Waihi
The Carr/Stevens family of Te Aroha, Thames & Kerepehi
The Cartwright/Cowgill family of Thames
The Cartwright/Gentles family of Thames
The Clark/ Cartwright family of Thames & Paeroa
The Clarke/ Collumbine family of Thames
The Coyle/Fair family of Thames
The Douglas/Day family of Thames & Miranda
The Gilroy/Colemoss family of Coromandel
The Hamon/ Middleton family of Thames
The Larkin/Coyle family of Thames
The Livingstone/Hunter family of Thames & Waihi
The Middleton/Lynch family of Thames
The Mitchell/Carline family of Coromandel
The Neal/ O'Dowd family of Thames
The Robinson/Campbell family of Waikino & Waitekauri
The Small/Clout family of Thames
The Spencer/Tetley family of Thames
The Spry/Carlaw family of Paeroa
The Sutcliffe/Hastings family of Thames
The Tetley/Seed family of Thames
The Twentyman/Hicks family of Thames
The Vedder/ McPike family of Thames


We have an active Oral History Group who are collecting oral histories from people in the community with stories to tell. Recorded oral histories are an extremely valuable method for keeping history alive for future generations.
Index of Completed oral Histories.


Marie Pay has indexed The New Zealand Observer And Free Lance, from 1880 - 1909, with reference to early Thames names and events. There are thousands of names on this index, along with the page reference and a brief comment on the topic. This has been further expanded to include names from all over the peninsula. Great snippets to pad out your family picture - gossip, what they wore to various functions, marriages, scandals and mining information.


Pages commemorating early family or businesses, people or businesses living currently in the region, clubs etc. The information has been submitted by a family member/donor, along with a photo. These pages also acknowledge the donor.
A $100 donation gives you a page. These will later be made into 'books' and prominently displayed in the foyer of The Treasury. Not only do they become an interesting information resource about you or your early family, but we can acknowledge our donors by putting their name at the bottom of their page.

Boer War Memorial, Thames
Click to enlarge the photograph.