This site became known as the Tararua Acre after many of the casualties of New Zealand’s worst civilian shipwreck at Waipapa Point were buried here in 1881. Other recovered bodies are buried at the Fortrose Cemetery.
On 29 April 1881, the SS Tararua ran aground on Waipapa Reef. Attempts were made to get passengers and crew ashore by lifeboats, but they encountered difficulties because of the rising sea. George Lawrence successfully swam 300 metres from a lifeboat to shore and made it to the nearest building owned by the Bruntons. From there a man rode to Wyndham to raise the alarm.
Of the 151 passengers, 131 lives were lost.
Three gravestones and a memorial plinth remain there today
60km from Invercargill, It is located about 300 meters from the road to Waipapa point, about 1000 meters to the east of the point, which is near Otara in Southland.
(Information from various websites.)
- Added: 15 Jan 2016
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #2600804
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