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Forced to Strike - Waihī 1912

Forced to Strike - Waihī 1912

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  • Fri 7 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sat 8 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Wed 12 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Thu 13 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Fri 14 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sat 15 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Wed 19 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Thu 20 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Fri 21 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sat 22 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Wed 26 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Thu 27 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Fri 28 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sat 29 Dec ’12, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Wed 2 Jan ’13, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Thu 3 Jan ’13, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Fri 4 Jan ’13, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Sat 5 Jan ’13, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • View all sessions


New Zealand Police Museum, Papakowhai Rd, Papakowhai, Porirua - Mana


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission

Tuesday 12 November 1912 has become known as Black Tuesday, the day when striking mine engineer Frederick Evans died. The events surrounding his death have been the subject of debate and speculation for 100 years, with the reports of the day and subsequent published articles conflicting and adding to the myth.

The New Zealand Police Museum's new exhibition Forced to Strike! - Waihī 1912 backgrounds the events leading up to the Waihī gold miners' strike and covers the two factions - the Federationists and the Arbitrationists, and the role the New Zealand Police were tasked with - policing civil disobedience. The strongest focus, however, is on the police constable that Frederick Evans shot: Constable Gerald Wade.

"Constable Gerald Wade was on duty when shots were fired in the Union Hall, and when he went to investigate Frederick Evans shot him in the stomach. Evans took aim at Constable Wade for the second time, but Constable Wade struck him with his baton. Evans died as a result and Constable Wade suffered for the rest of his life, carrying that bullet near his spine for 52 years," says Museum Manager Rowan Carroll.

"But of course it wasn't as simple as that. What was Fred Evans’ state of mind that morning? It had been a long strike and tempers were frayed, violence had been increasing and many strikers were armed, and Police only had batons and handcuffs."

"Fred Evans’ death was a tragedy, but the impact on Constable Wade has never been fully revealed... until now. It became such a public situation and while the union’s side was put in the media spotlight the New Zealand Police remained neutral and silent. So 100 years on, it is time to recognise the sacrifice made by Constable Gerald Wade," says Miss Carroll.

The exhibition opens on 12 November 2012 and on that date Constable Wade's grandson David Walker will release his book Shades of Black, a document in support of his grandfather. The book will be available at the Museum and the exhibition will run until May 2013.

Enquiries to New Zealand Police Museum Manager Rowan Carroll:
04 238 3225

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