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M-355: Thomas T. Kerslake Overland Journal from Canada to New Zealand

Repository: St. Louis Mercantile Library Special Collections

Title: M-355: Thomas T. Kerslake Overland Journal from Canada to New Zealand

Date: 1877

Extent: 27 pages

Location note: Vertical Files

Language: English

Abstract: The collection consists of a journal by Thomas T. Kerslake addressed to Mr. C. Livingstone. The writings describe Kerslake's 1877 overland rail travels from Canada to San Francisco, and then overseas travel to New Zealand.

Scope and Content note: In this 27-page journal, Thomas T. Kerslake writes of his travels from Ontario, Canada to New Zealand in 1877. He leaves Plattsville, Ontario, Canada on September 29, 1877. Traveling across the United States by rail, he gives accounts of large and small cities (Chicago, Des Moines, Council Bluffs, Omaha, Promontory Point, San Francisco) and of the landscape and wild life on the plains and the Mississippi River. At San Francisco he boards the boat "City of Sydney" sailing across the Pacific Ocean, stopping in the Sandwich (Hawaiian) Islands before landing in Wellington, New Zealand in early November 1877.

The author does not note which year his travels were, however in some entries he provides the month, date, and the day of the week. By determining which year(s) that day of the week fell on that specific day a year could be narrowed down. New Zealand newspaper sources from the late 1800s were then referenced, searching for the day and year of the "City of Sydney" boat, Commanded by Captain Dearborn, arrived in New Zealand. The boat docked several times in this port throughout the 1870s and 1880s. It was then determined that Kerslake's travels took place in 1877.

Controlled Subject Headings

  • New Zealand -- Description and travel
  • Ocean travel
  • Overland journeys to the Pacific
  • Railroad travel -- North America

Conditions Governing Access note: This collection is open for research. 

Conditions Governing Use note: Some of the material in this collection may be photocopied, digitally scanned or photographed, subject to condition and the judgment of Library staff. Library staff members reserve the right to deny reproduction services for any reason at any time.

Copyright Information: The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property, and libel laws as they apply.

Fee Services: Fees associated with staff research time, cost recovery in reproductions processing time and materials, and licensing may apply.

Preferred Citation note: The preferred citation for this collection is "From the collections of the St. Louis Mercantile Library at UM - St. Louis."