Welcome to The New Zealand Founders Society

Who are we?

We represent descendants of the persons who arrived in New Zealand prior to 31 December 1865.

We share a common interest in their history of New Zealand and the achievements of its pioneers. 

Who can join?

Those who are descendants of persons who arrived in New Zealand before 31 December 1865. 

We also accept Associate Members.

Services we offer

A Wellington-based reference library is available for members use by appointment only.

Material includes over 600 books & pamphlets mainly dealing with early history of New Zealand. 

We also have family trees, histories, newspaper cuttings, photographs and a list of ships arriving in New Zealand before 1865 with some passenger lists. 

An annual Bulletin is published and available through branches.


What we do

  • Prepare, publish and collect passenger lists and have available accurate lists of persons who arrived prior to 1865.
  • Administer a research award for national or local history. 
  • Assist in preserving historic places, buildings and monuments.
  • Provide activities for members
  • Branches hold regular gatherings with speakers
  • Foster links between members

Apply for the
Annual Research/Publication Award.