Public Talk: Thinking About the Square

Russell Poole presents the fourth and final talk in a series brought to you by the Te Manawa Museum Society.

In a letter of 3 April 1866, surveyor John Tiffin Stewart briefly mentions having 'laid off' the township of Papaioea. A striking feature of his 'laying off' is the square at the centre of what became Palmerston North. What inspired Stewart to create this square?

Why is it so large, indeed some might say out-sized? What uses have succeeding generations found for it? What controversies has it stirred up?

Included in the talk will be slides showing Stewart's surveying instruments, which are on loan to Te Manawa from the Whanganui Museum.