Egalitarianism has long been an important value in New Zealand. Grand estates and large landholdings were inconsistent with a pioneer society in which setters expected to be relatively equal. Shown in the 1870s painting is one of the great sheep-farming estates in 19th-century Canterbury, William Robinson’s Cheviot Hills, which was more than 80,000 acres (around 32,000 hectares). Robinson’s large homestead was sold to the government in 1893, following his death, and divided up. This was part of a government policy to break up large estates into smaller farms.
Using this item
Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.