Tamati


TAMATI
photo ex Bob W.

The above photo was found at the Waiuku museum the other day and there was no supporting information on the vessel. Can someone throw some light on her for us. Given the ladder on the deck, it safe to assume this was a lake photo.

Update from Paul Drake (mans a legend)

This is a great photo. This is TAMATI at Lake Taupo. Built by Bailey and Lowe (I have seen her builders plate), she still exists under the same name but otherwise unrecognizable at Paeroa. She is a side-wheeler, having been converted at Hari Hari (west coast of the South Island) some years ago. She operated commercially on Lake Ianthe. Prior to this, she languished for many years on a front lawn in Paraparaumu. And prior to this, she was a private launch on Paremata Harbour, north of Wellington. At Taupo in the 1930’s, she operated commercially in tandem with  Bailey and Lowe’s TAINUI (destroyed by fire in 1937), servicing a fishing lodge based in Boat Harbour (Western Bay). This fishing lodge was the former steamer TONGARIRO (Bailey and Lowe 1899), which ran a service between Tokaanu and Taupo until 1924. Following her years as a commercial launch at Taupo, and after WW2,  TAMATI was altered by local boat builder Jack Taylor, who raised her bow and constructed a new (plywood) cabin, which eventually rotted off.  TAMATI operated as a private launch owned by the Butler family. Said to be 28 feet LOA.

Photo below showing TAMATI in Boat Harbour, with the fishing lodge (ex TONGARIRO) in the background, and the Collings and Bell PIRI PONO (now at the Auckland Maritime museum) in the fore ground.

More photos ex Paul Drake

Photos below ex Heather Reeve, friends of current owners Colin & Gloria James

 

24 thoughts on “Tamati

  1. You will only need the beach umbrella on the ship to get to Motuihie tomorrow, a great saving in Diesel.

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  2. The tramtop on a dee front cabin is rather unusual and was undoubtedly put on later. Otherwise her configuration is standard Bailey & Lowe of the period 1910. As john two dogs says below, a “sidewheeler” is a paddle steamer with twin paddles, one each side, as distinct from a “sternwheeler” which has a single paddle astern, like the Mississippi river steamers.
    Walter Bailey would have a fit if he could see her now.

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  3. Getting back to the original photo, I think the person in question is a male. It look like he’s wearing what they called plus fours, popular with golfers of that era. Although his hat isn’t in full view, I’d say by the strappings at the front that it’s a desert hat. He certainly appears to be rather protective of the girl – and she doesn’t want a bar of him!

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  4. Yes, the nearest thing to an old steamer is the (ex-Kerikeri) “Ernest Kemp” which only looks like one.

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  5. I think it’s a ladder too. Commercial launches in the Sounds, particularly the Pelorus and its offshoots, used to carry ladders for use where there were no wharves.
    The modern photos above show the side-wheeler configuration; one paddle-wheel each side amidships, as opposed to a stern-wheeler with only one paddle-wheel at the stern.

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  6. RMS TONGARIRO was hauled ashore on the western shore of Taupuaeharuru Bay about 70 years ago and was quite a landmark for a long time. Known to locals as “the house boat” as in “caught a good fish at the houseboat this morning”. She slowly rotted away and is no more.

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  7. Hi There.

    As a recent (& now avid) reader of the fascinating posts to this site, I was very intrigued by today’s post and its mention of Tamati’s days on Lake Taupo, especially learning about RMS Tongariro.
    We had a weekend in Taupo 2 weeks ago and wondered why the lake doesn’t have an old steamer plying it a la the TSS Earnslaw on Lake Wakatipu.

    Wondering what had happened to RMS Tongariro I went looking online, and found very good bios of both her, Tamati & Tainui at: http://www.promotionalart.com/History_Taupo_Boats/boats_t.htm

    FYI, my interest in WW stems from my wife’s father (Ted Carr) having built & raced 18 footers on the Waitemata in the ’30s, his boat being one of the team which competed in Sydney in 1938.

    Cheers, Les Elmer

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  8. I wonder if she was built as TAMATI? The earliest ref I have is 1929 and she’s quite a lot earlier than that. Between 1948 and 1958 H. J. Butler of Taupo was a member of the RNZYS with her so she probably wasn’t used for hire during that period as the Squadron would have frowned. She then still had her Sterling engine, confirming that she was probably built by Bailey & Lowe.

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  9. This is a great photo. This is TAMATI at Lake Taupo. Built by Bailey and Lowe (I have seen her builders plate), she still exists under the same name but otherwise unrecognizable at Paeroa. She is a side-wheeler, having been converted at Hari Hari (west coast of the South Island) some years ago. She operated commercially on Lake Ianthe. Prior to this, she languished for many years on a front lawn in Paraparaumu. And prior to this, she was a private launch on Paremata Harbour, north of Wellington. At Taupo in the 1930’s, she operated commercially in tandem with Bailey and Lowe’s TAINUI (destroyed by fire in 1937), servicing a fishing lodge based in Boat Harbour (Western Bay). This fishing lodge was the former steamer TONGARIRO (Bailey and Lowe 1899), which ran a service between Tokaanu and Taupo until 1924. Following her years as a commercial launch at Taupo, and after WW2, TAMATI was altered by local boat builder Jack Taylor, who raised her bow and constructed a new (plywood) cabin, which eventually rotted off. TAMATI operated as a private launch owned by the Butler family. Said to be 28 feet LOA. Photos to Alan shortly!

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  10. Is that actually a male? That’s a curious trouser arrangement if it is – unless he’s wearing some baggy culottes. Could be a full sailed old battleship crowding the younger gal.

    Either way, the body language is interesting.

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  11. I cant see a ladder Alan? Do you think that guy could sit any closer to the girl?
    I like the look of Tamati she’s a Pam boat, it shall be nice to hear her story.
    and do you think the couple stayed together through the years ?… Or did they just go fishing?
    P

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