William Daldy

William Daldy.

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The Auckland Harbour Board's first chairman, William Crush Daldy (1816-1903), the son of an Essex merchant, was 16 when he first went to sea on one of his father's colliers. He arrived in Auckland in 1841 in his own schooner Shamrock and spent the next three years trading between Sydney and Auckland; in 1845 he captained the Bolina on its voyage taking the first cargo of merchandise from Auckland to England. In 1847 he settled in the Auckland area and two years later established the successful wholesale shipping business, Combes and Daldy.

Daldy, elected chairman of the first Auckland Harbour Board in July 1871, held the position until 1877; he remained a member of the Board until 1881.

artists impression

Artist impression of the Wilson's Cement tower.

His business interests included steamboat companies, timber and kauri gum. He was a trustee of the Auckland Savings Bank, director of the New Zealand Insurance Company, chairman of the South British Insurance Company, and was one of first auditors of the Bank of New Zealand. Daldy was also politically active. He was a member of Parliament for Auckland (1856-60) and a minister in the government, served as a provincial councillor from 1861 to 1864, and was briefly an Auckland City Councillor.

His second wife, the suffragist Amey Daldy, was president of the Women's Franchise League and of the National Council of Women; Daldy consistently supported her and spoke out for women's franchise. He died in 1903.

Queen St Wharf 1856

Queens Street wharf in 1856.

Loading Cargo

Loading cargo on Queens Street Wharf


Red Gates at Ports entrance

The Red Gates at the Port entrance

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