THE RABBIT FUR TRADE.
TO THE EDITOR. Sir,—Seeing there has been so much said in reference to the rabbitskin and fur trade in your reports lately, I would like to lay before your readers a few facts concerning the commencement of the export trade of rabbitskins and the manufacture of fur. In your reports the public are led to believe that the manufacture of fur is quite a new industry in New Zealand. Such, however, is not the case. There are a few who know that in the year 1876 this industry was brought prominently forward by a paper fully dealing with the export of skins and fur and the manufacture of fur and felt hats, which was handed to the late Mr Macandrew and the Hon. MrLarnach by a gentleman well'connected at Home, who came out here to commence this industry with experience up to that time extending over forty years in England, Scotland, the Continent, and Canada, and he is still carrying on this line in the colonics. Those who had the pleasure of attending the Dunedin Exhibition of 1881 and the Wellington Exhibition of 1885 saw Mr G. Bertinshaw's samples, showing the processes of manufacture from the skin to the made-up felt hat; and a case of samples is now to be seen in the Wellington museum; these facts all bearing out that fur manufacture in our midst is not a new industry ; and it would be hardly fair to Mr Bertinshaw and others who have a greater knowledge of the manufacture of fur than those pretending to teach and rule the rabbitskin trade here, to let this opportunity go by without some comment. Many, perhaps, are not aware that felt manufacture from fur has been carried on for some years, and also the export of fur. I am also informed by a reliable authority, that machinery of the latest improved description will soon be landed in Dunedin for tho manufacture, not only of the fur for export, but to manufacture felt hats and other wearing apparel from New Zealand fur, as it is surprising the number of articles that are manufactured from tho skin of poor bunny. Such a factory as I have mentioned will be a credit to Dunedin; and, instead of employing, as has been spoken of, the inmates of our public institutions, it will be worked by workmen and workwomen who have been all their lives in the trade.
Trusting that you will insert this for the benefit of fnr and felt hat manufacturing in New Zealand,—l am, etc., Bunny. Dunedin, August 9.
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THE RABBIT FUR TRADE., Evening Star, Issue 7983, 12 August 1889
THE RABBIT FUR TRADE. Evening Star, Issue 7983, 12 August 1889
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