The first issue of the Albertland Gazette appeared on 14 June 1862, on board the ‘Matilda Wattenbach’, a ship bringing settlers to found a nonconformist community on the Kaipara Harbour. Samuel Johnson (1827-1905) had been engaged as printer and editor. He managed to produce a second shipboard issue despite problems preventing his cases of type from being upset.
Although the ship arrived in Auckland in September 1862, after a disagreement with settlement leader William Rawson Brame, Johnson spent time in Auckland and Dunedin, and did not arrive in Port Albert until March 1863.
He produced the third issue, and the first to be printed on land, on 1 August 1863, and the Albertland Gazette continued to appear on a monthly basis, until the last issue on 19 June 1864.
Exhausted by his role as publisher, editor, reporter and compositor, not to mention local postmaster, Johnson quit Port Albert, and later went on to establish the Marlborough Express in Blenheim.
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