Flaxmilling in the Manawatu

Now, the Manawatu region of New Zealand’s North Island [click here for map] is known for its farming and wind turbines, but for a few decades from the late 19th to early 20th centuries, flaxmilling was one of the region’s most important industries. When farmers began to drain the swampland to establish pasture in the late 19th century, they found the process stimulated the growth of the flax already growing naturally in the area.¬† From this chance discovery, flaxmilling grew from the 1870s and continued until the 1930s. Continue reading