In the 19th and 20th centuries extensive drainage work was carried out in the Waikato region to create farmland. Before machinery was developed this was done manually, using nothing more than shovels. These men are digging a drain at Ruakura, Hamilton, around 1900.
Image courtesy of AgResearch
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Reference: Tony Nightingale, White boots and gumboots: a history of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries 1892-1992. Palmerston North: Dunmore Press, 1992, p. 65
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