Even in an age when a postcard might take months to get to its destination, Christchurch was worthy of writing home about. Many of the historic postcards found in our collection capture a cityscape that has long since vanished.
A hāngi is a traditional Māori method of cooking food underground using hot stones. Explore a selection of photographs from our collection that showcase the preparation of kai in our local communities.
Originally a source of mahinga kai for Waitaha, Ngāti Māmoe and Ngāi Tahu, the Ōpāwaho-Heathcote River is one of two significant rivers in the city of Christchurch. Explore a selection of photographs that depict the river throughout the decades.
From the farm to the racecourse, horses still feature in the daily lives of many Cantabrians, long after they were replaced by automobiles as the city's main form of transport. Explore a selection of photographs from our collection that depict the affinity between humans and horses.
A variety of hospitals, some no longer extant, have served the city of Christchurch and the wider Canterbury region. Today, the most prominent include Christchurch Hospital, Princess Margaret Hospital, Burwood Hospital and St George's Hospital.
Hotels originally catered to people travelling to Christchurch or passing through the smaller settlements in wider Canterbury. With the decline of rail and coach travel, many prominent hotels either closed or reinvented themselves as local pubs and backpacker accommodation.
Kapa Haka is a term for the modern day performance of traditional and contemporary adaptations of Māori waiata, mōteatea, poi and haka. Explore a selection of photographs from our collection showcasing performances held in Ōtautahi-Christchurch.
Explore a selection of photographs from across the decades in our collection and relive your Christchurch school days, from hand bells to sitting on the mat. Do you recognise any classmates in the photographs?
The Teachers College in Christchurch originally operated from the Normal School at the corner of Montreal and Kilmore Streets from 1873. They eventually required their own site and the foundation stone was laid in 1924 on the corner of Montreal and Peterborough Streets and the Post Primary Department took over this building.
By the 1960s these sites were becoming overcrowded and out dated. It was decided to relocate to Ilam and the new Teachers College opened 50 years ago on April 22 1970. This was initially just the Secondary Division with the Primary Division remaining in town until the late 1970s when the rest of the Ilam site was completed.
Wedding photographs are family treasures, passed down through the generations. Explore this selection of photographs from our collection that showcase the diverse ways in which people celebrate love in our city.
Situated on the northern shores of Whakaraupō, Ōhinehou was originally a Māori settlement. After being recognised as an official port, Lyttelton, by the Canterbury Association in 1849, it became the gateway to Christchurch and the wider Canterbury province for ocean going settlers. It continues to play a significant role in shipping and tourism for the region.
Do you recognise anyone in the photographs? Do you have any stories about the locations or events? If you are too young, perhaps you can ask someone else who might remember the scenes depicted in this selection of photographs from our collection. Share with your family and friends to encourage discussions about your memories.
Established in 1920, the Municipal Electricity Department took over the regulation of the city's electricity from the former Christchurch City Council Electricity Department. The organisation was known for its Modernist building on the corner of Manchester Street and Armagh Street.
Remember that band from your high school? You might find them here in this selection of photographs from our collection. Christchurch has produced many musicians, including some who turned their passion into a career. For those of us who are tone deaf but still enjoy listening to music, you might find the store where you used to purchase your albums.
For many, the beachfront suburb of New Brighton holds memories of having the only shopping centre in Christchurch that was open on a Saturday. With its iconic pier and hot water pool facility, the suburb is still a place where the people of Christchurch come to surf, swim, fish, or simply enjoy the view of the Pacific Ocean.
Ōtākaro meanders its way from a spring source in Avonhead in the West, through Ilam, Riccarton, Fendalton and Hagley Park, through the city then through Avonside, Dallington, Avondale and Aranui in the East and then out to sea via the estuary. The river has been a source of mahinga kai for Waitaha, Ngāti Māmoe and Ngāi Tahu and a place for recreation.