History Of Chinese Gold Miners In Otago

I found this very interesting & some great footage.

JW :cowboy_hat_face:


great watch , and great to see the history documented


My thoughts entirely.

JW :cowboy_hat_face:

The doc’o is at the Switzers museum and forms part of a great story that tells the history of gold mining in the area! Well worth the visit…

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Fantastic and inspiring me to go back down to Waikaia for another look around.

I have always bern interested in the Chinese miners.

Dr Ngs books ‘Windows on a Chinese Past’ give a great insight.

I am thinking of putting a copy of his volume which is a fscsimile of the Rev Akexander Dons notebook onto Trademe as Dr Ng gave me a couple of copies.


Interesting stuff. Only the tip of the iceberg in regards to all the Chinese got up to in the nokamai. I had relations that mined an old Chinese claim near the nokamai area. Paid for a 600 acre freehold farm in 2 years, just mining when farming was quiet on the sheep station lease they had. Not bad going hey. Imagine trying to do that these days.

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Yes it could be done nowdays.
Know what your about and where to go.
For 99.9 percent of gold fossickers its just a lot of fun, a hobby.
I have photos here of one days haul of gold. 35 ounces. Day after day.
Not too long ago.

NOT me however. From the source of the photos however l do know a spot. The person concerned said that its possible to pan 2 ounces a day. That would make sense as l knew a guy when l worked with NZFS at Totara Flat who used to go up to his spot and pan 1/2 an ounce in half an hour and l think he used to raffle it at the Reefton Working Mens Club. That was 1969.


It is with a great deal of sadness that I was informed that a great friend of mine and the ONE person who did more to record the Chinese Gold mining history in Otago/Southland and the West Coast etc than anyone else Doctor James Ng, died a few hours ago.

His books ‘Windows on a Chinese Past’ are a genuine must for those interested not just in the Chinese Miners but also gold mining in general with an emphasis on the Chinese.

These books comprise four volumes all filled with a huge amount of information.

I got to know Dr Ng when I arrived back in Dunedin and he became my doctor well over forty years ago and unlike the greedy bastards today he never charged me one cent for his services. That earnt him total respect and my loyalty and in return I mapped every Chinese hut site in Deep Stream and on my place and took photos for him.

He was Kiwiland’s greatest Chinese goldfields historian. At this point in time his death has not been made public but I daresay it will be well advertised.

So long Dr Ng - you were a great friend.


Thanks for the link. Really enjoyed watching this

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