Southland Presbytery Records

Bluff Presbyterian Church -

  • The following records were destroyed by fire when the Manse in Bann Street burnt down on the 19th April 1929 - Marriage registers from 1894 to 1929 and the Baptismal register from 1894 to 1902 and from 1909 to 1929. No Communion rolls 1894 to 1905; no Deacon's Court minutes 1894 to 1898; no "Busy Bee" records - Bluff was the first "Hive" in New Zealand, being formed in the early 1900's.

Centre Bush Parish -

  • Baptismal register 1913 to 1924 missing; no Sunday School rolls or minutes.

Forest Hill Parish -

  • The Manse occupied by the Rev Allan K Ross and Mrs Helen Ross burnt down in June 1914, both lost practically all their possessions.
  • Also lost in the fire were the Parish Marriage registers 1895 to 1914, Communion register to 1914, and Baptismal register to 1914.

Fortrose Presbyterian Church -

  • Marriage Registers 1888 to 1941 missing.
  • Baptism Register 1888 to 1936 missing.

Limestone Plains Parish -

  • No Communion rolls 1878 to 1899 (noted missing in 1954).

Lumsden Presbyterian Church -

  • After being sold for removal, the Lumsden manse burnt down on the 18th July 1915. As the Church Insurance Committee had not been informed that it was vacant and that it had been sold - in fact it was in the process of being dismantled - they refused to pay the claim. Finally, with the resigned acceptance of the Lumsden Deacon's Court, the amount of £37 was paad out on "Moral and compassionate grounds". 
  • See also under 'Taringatura Parish'.

Nightcaps-Waiono Parish -

  • No Communion roll from 1900 to 1911 for Nightcaps or to 1928 for Ohai.
  • A fire caused unspecified damage to the Nightcaps Church about 1949-50 causing £91 pounds worth of damage. 

North Invercargill Presbyterian Church -

  • The North Invercargill Presbyterian Church Mission Hall (opened June 1905) burnt down on the 9th August 1910. Session and Deacon's Court records were held elsewhere however there is a possibility that any local records may have been lost.
  • No Presbyterian Women's Missionary Union minutes prior to 1927. 
  • A fire in the manse (believed to only be in the kitchen) caused £87 pounds worth of damage c.1949-50.

Orawia Presbyterian Church -

  • Baptismal register 1903 to 1957 missing.

Orepuki - Tuatapere Parish -

  • Marriage register 1960 to 1974 missing.

Otautau Presbyterian Church -

  • No Communion roll 1892 to 1908.
  • In 1892 a Communion set was purchased by the Rev R Ewen in Dunedin at a cost of £10.14.0 In 1920 the decision was made to sell the "old Communion silver" "except the two plates". In 1953 a member of the public found the the old communion "flagon" (ewer) for sale in a second hand shop in Dunedin. The Otautau Session made the decision to repurchase the ewer which they decided to place on the Communion table at future Communion services.
  • In 1953 the Board of Manager's noted "the loss of certain Church property in the Fairfax Hall fire". While not specifically noted, this would presumably have been the items required for occasional services in the Fairfax Public Hall.

Oteramika Presbyterian Church -

  • No marriages for period Nov 1928 to Jun 1933. The same Minister was resident in the Parish before and after this period. The numbers run consecutively in the one marriage register which indicates clearly that no marriages took place during this five year period.

Riverton Presbyterian Church -

  • No Baptismal roll 1861 to 1883, and from 1885 to 1897; no Communion roll 1898 to 1929.
  • Marriages performed by the Rev CS Ross for the period 4 July 1873 to 19 Feb 1877 are to be found in the Anderson's Bay Dunedin Marriages registers. Rev Ross took 'his' register with him to his next charge after Riverton.
  • A small fire in the manse caused unspecified damage in 1948.

St Paul's Presbyterian Church, Invercargill -

  • Baptism roll 1876 to 1887 missing.
  • According to a record from 1938, the Parish once issued Communion Tokens however as at this date none could be located. It is unknown if they were of card or metal.
  • About 1938-39, "a son of the manse cleaning his hands with petrol near a candle during an electric power stoppage, was responsible for a fire casuing damage to wash hand basin and paint work...". The Church Insurance Committee paid the insurance claim which was £4.2.0, however there is no mention of the hapless youth!
  • A fire in the heating plant damaged this building and part of the Church in 1941 causing £70 pounds worth of damage. 

St Stephen's Presbyterian Church, Waikiwi -

  • Session Minute books from May 1960 to 9.7.1970 and Deacon's Court Minute books from 24.12.1886 to Nov 1918, Mar 1931 to May 1954, and Nov 1965 to 18.6.1970 are missing and despite an extensive search cannot yet be found. No Baptism register from 1887 onwards; no Communion rolls prior to 1913 or between 1932 and 1938.

Stewart Island Home Mission Station -

  • Marriage registers 1906 to 1920 damaged by damp; Marriage register 1921 to 1924 missing (noted as missing in 1954).

Taringatura Parish - (Lumsden District) -

  • The Taringatura Church Committee Minute Book 1879 to 1901 has been damaged by damp while stored for 'safe keeping' in the Southland Savings Bank (presumably in Lumsden) between mid 1979 and 1982.
  • See also under 'Lumsden'.

Toi Tois Parish -

  • A number of records belonging to the Toi Tois APW were singed in a house fire in the 1970's. Only the covers have been affected but otherwise the books escaped any great damage.

Tuatapere Presbyterian Church -

  • A marriage register dating from October 1922 to October 1927 is missing (24 marriages). We do hold butts from 12 July 1922 to 4 Aug 1925 which give the names of those married including the date and these are being indexed as an aid to identifying those married but with a note that we do not hold the actual certificate (which would still be available from the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages).
  • Windows in the Church (and presumably also exterior walls) were damaged in 1941 by a fire in an adjoining section.

Winton Presbyterian Church -

  • No Communion register 1872 to 1902 and from 1946 to 1957; Baptismal register 1872 to May 1879 missing.
  • The manse "outbuildings" were destroyed by fire in 1944.

Woodlands (Longbush) Presbyterian Church -

  • Baptismal Register 1864 to Aug 1889 missing. A new Minister commenced his ministry at Woodlands in July 1889 which indicates that earlier baptisms may possibly have never been recorded.
  • Communion register 1927 to 1938 missing; Presbyterian Women's Missionary Union minutes 1908 to early 1921 missing.
  • The Parish (Longbush) at one time issued metal Communion Tokens. These are now extremely rare.

Waianiwai - Waimatuku Parish -

  • No Baptismal Roll April 1903 to October 1905. The first few pages of the register have been cut out. In the front cover is a note written by their second Minister, the Rev AD Kirkland : "The first pages had been removed from this book when it came into my hands - Oct 1905 AD Kirkland". The Parish called its first Minister, the Rev RH Catherwood, on the the April 1903. As he went onto Auckland in 1905 removing the first few pages of the register and leaving the unused register behind would not have proved of any advantage to him nor was it accepted practice to remove pages from official Parish records. There is no record of where the missing pages went.

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