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1900 Picnic at Omapere
Updated: 15 March 2019
Website Owner: Dr. Kenneth M. Baker
The lady in the centre rear of the photo wearing the boater is Frances Sophia Bryers,
daughter of Charles and Mary Anne Constance (née MAYNE) BRYERS of Omapere and who
ran the boarding house there.  The identity of the others in the photo is not known although it
would be interesting to know who they were.  Frances Sophia later married in 1906, Thomas
James Baker, grandson of the early Hokianga settler, John Baker.

It is likely that the picnic was held in the still existing semi-cave seen in the background and
under the headland before reaching the blow-hole on the outer South Head.  The
photographer William Gordon Jones was friendly with a number of the families in the
Omapere and Opononi area and came up North to visit for several summers.
William Gordon Jones meticulously recorded his exploits and the following is an extract from
his Diary of February 1900 (original held by the Hokianga Historical Society) –

“Sunday 4th:   Up at Opononi early....After dinner several of us strolled round to the blowhole
to spend the afternoon.  Some of us got thirsty so Davy Dutch and I went up to the pilot
station & brought back a lot of sugar, tea, jam, butter, cups etc from his cupboard & we had
a grand feed, there were about 14 of us left behind to tea.    After I had put the things away
some returned in the pilot boat.  I sat in the bow  playing on the violin whilst the others sang
& rowed”.
Picnic at Hokianga c. 1900 – Photographer, William Gordon Jones, Taheke
(original in the private collection of Ken Baker)
Hokianga History and Memorabilia