This photograph shows the crowd in Queen Street, Auckland, during a riot on 14 April 1932. Note the smashed shop windows on the right of the image. In 1932, during the worst period of the economic depression, there were a series of riots and disturbances in New Zealand, mostly relating to unemployment. There were incidents in Dunedin, Christchurch, Wellington and Huntly, with the worst riot occurring in Auckland. Following the Queen Street riot Parliament passed the Public Safety Conservation Act 1932, which allowed the government to assume virtually unlimited powers during a proclaimed state of emergency. The act was only used twice: by the first Labour government on the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, and by the first National government during the 1951 waterfront dispute.
Using this item
Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira
Photograph by Tudor Collins
Permission of the Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira must be obtained before any re-use of this image.