|New Zealand Methodist Church OnLine History
Prince Albert College Trust
The Wesleyan College and Seminary 1850-1868
The Years Between
Prince Albert College 1895-1906
Forty Year in the Wilderness 1907-1947
Effort and Frustration 1947-1960
Recent Developments 1961-1977
In 1950 the Wesley Historical Society (N.Z.) published a 40p. booklet entitled A Tale of Two Colleges, by Aylesbeare Arthur and Nora Buttle, in which these two old girls of Prince Albert told the story admirably from the point of view of the pupils as recollected in maturity. The early background was carefully researched in the light of family tradition and the official records that remain, which are reasonably full for the times, and the Prince Albert period was brought to light as only ex-pupils could hope to do. This remains one of the Society's more attractive publications.
Unfortunately the booklet has long been out of print. Moreover a great deal has happened since 1950. It seems that there is room for an up-to-date survey, written this time from the point of view, so far as we may interpret it, of the various generations of Proprietors and Trustees who have administered the property and kept it in being and more or less solvent since the middle of the nineteenth century.
If the fathers did not succeed in maintaining 'a school in perpetuity' as the founders hoped, they did make two brave attempts, each of which made a useful contribution to its time, the first in the very early days and the second in the era just before the government introduced free secondary school education. And they have been able to preserve for the Church a potentially valuable educational endowment, one which has contributed considerable sums to other educational institutions at times of crisis, within the terms of the rust.
Incidentally the story throws some light on conditions in Auckland in the very early days. when the gallows stood at the corner of Queen and Victoria Streets and Upper Queen Street was only a muddy track. Life was raw then. All honour to those who tried to build for the future of their children and the future of the faith.