Raroa Road

At the end of Searching Fairlie Terrace I asked for help to find the residential address of G.H. Cunningham in Wellington in the 1920 through the 1920s electoral rolls. Sandra Simpson from Sandra’s Garden kindly sent me the following:

1922 electoral roll: Gordon Herriot Cunningham, mycologist, at 66 Raroa Rd (Kelburn). By 1931 he was in Palmerston North, at 28a Church St, still ‘mycologist’. By 1938 he was in Auckland, at 2 Sadgrove Tce (sic) and ‘cvil’ servant’. By 1941 he at 10a Grange Rd, Mt Eden, ‘director’, where he apparently lived until his death in 1962.

It’s interesting how Cunningham describes occupation as a mycologist through the 1920s and early 30s, then as a civil servant in the late 1930s, and finally as director from 1941. That final one was when he had become director of Plant Disease Division of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR) based at Mt Albert, Auckland.

66 Raroa Road in Kelburn, Wellington, was built about 1912 but I cannot find a photo of it from that period, and it can’t be seen in Google Earth Street View as it is too far back from the road with lots of trees in front of it. [Note, the house shown in the Property Values database is number 64 and all the photos for this section of road are out by one].

66 Raroa Rd, Kelburn is the cream coloured house with the red tiled roof on the upper left hand side of the photo, 25 June 2022 [photo Geoff Ridley]
66 Raroa Rd, Kelburn from Norna Cres., 25 June 2022 [photo Geoff Ridley]

There are very few photographs of this part of Kelburn in publicly collections and the best I could find are taken in Plunket Street. These photos are about 100-150m from 66 Raroa Rd. If the photographer was to turn about 140˚ to the right, he would have a clear shot of the house. Never-the-less Cunningham would have walked along Plunket St, Upland Rd, St Michael’s Cres., and Kelburn Pde as the most level was to get to Fairlie Tce.

Plunket St, Kelburn looking towards the north-east. Photographer F.G. Barker, 1929, Reference 00127-79, Wellington City Archives / https://wellington.recollect.co.nz/

Plunket St, Kelburn, from the same position 25 June 2022 [photo Geoff Ridley]

Listed below are collection Cunningham made in Kelburn during the time the lived and worked in Kelburn in the 1920s. These collections are held in Te Kohinga Hekaheka o Aotearoa – New Zealand Fungarium (PDD) and can be searched for at Manaaki Whenua Systematics Collections Data. The majority of these collections are exotic fungi on exotic hosts as nearly all of wellington had been cleared for pasture by the 1880 and the suburban development, seen in these photos, resulted from the subdivision of farmland for housing. The natives that had survived the clearance was in the Wellington Botanic Garden at the north end of Kelburn and in damp steep gullies scattered around the suburb.

PDD 87 – Claviceps purpurea (Fr.) Tul. 1853

PDD 196 – Pleospora herbarum (Pers.) Rabenh.

PDD 286 – Puccinia brachypodii var. poae-nemoralis (G.H. Otth) Cummins & H.C. Greene

PDD 288 – Uromyces dactylidis G.H. Otth

PDD 314 – Puccinia brachypodii var. poae-nemoralis (G.H. Otth) Cummins & H.C. Greene

PDD 605 – Chondrostereum purpureum (Pers.) Pouzar

PDD 633 – Plicaria endocarpoides (Berk.) Rifai 1968

PDD 712 – Ileodictyon cibarium Tul. & C. Tul.

PDD 737 – Uromyces trifolii (R. Hedw.) Fuckel

PDD 772 – Uredo histiopteridis (G. Cunn.) Hirats. f.

PDD 931 – Monilinia fructicola (G. Winter) Honey 1928

PDD 947 – Sporoschisma mirabile Berk. & Broome

PDD 1006 – Phlyctema asparagi Fautrey & Roum.

PDD 1211 – Serpula himantioides (Fr.) P. Karst. 1884

PDD 1233 – Neonectria obtusisporum (Cooke & Harkn.) Rossman, L. Lombard & Crous 2014

PDD 1502 – Anthracoidea sclerotiformis (Cooke & Massee) Kukkonen

PDD 1613 – Puccinia cyani Pass.

PDD 1982 – Gaeumannomyces graminis (Sacc.) Arx & D.L. Olivier 1952

PDD 2028 – Puccinia pelargonii-zonalis Doidge

PDD 2077 – Peniophora coprosmae G. Cunn.

PDD 2140 – Trametes hirsuta (Wulfen) Pilát

PDD 8482 – Cyathus olla (Batsch) Pers.

PDD 8572 – Lycoperdon lividum Pers.

PDD 9064 – Uredo histiopteridis (G. Cunn.) Hirats. f.

PDD 10137 – Ileodictyon cibarium Tul. & C. Tul.

PDD 10143 – Scleroderma flavidum f. macrosporum G. Cunn.