Once iron began to be smelted at Onekakā in the early 1920s there were great hopes for a large-scale industry. This aerial photograph shows the tramway leading to the wharf in 1936. The smoke in the centre marks the site of the ironworks. The photo was published in New Zealand Truth on 3 June 1937, along with an artist’s rendition of what Onekakā would look like if the ironworks were developed to their full potential, with a sprawling town surrounding the works. At the time there were plans to obtain finance from Britain to further utilise the deposits. Nothing came of this, as they proved to be too low-yielding.
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Archives New Zealand - Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga
Reference: IC 61 1/53 1; IC 61 1/53 2
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