Early History of the Mahurangi area:
Michael William Munro:
A member of the 58th Regiment which came to Australia to escort convicts and was sent on to New Zealand in 1845 to deal with unrest in the Bay of Islands.
He was a very early settler on the Mahurangi River & bought land near Duck Creek in the first land sales in 1853.
In 1864 Mr Munro was appointed postmaster Middle Mahurangi (later called Craigieburn).
He became a member of the Eastern Mahurangi Highway Board 1868-1876.
Served on the Mullet Pt School committee.
Was a special Constable for Mahurangi district for 11 years.
Instrumental in getting the Warkworth Masonic hall built in 1879.
Member of the Rodney Country Council.
Contributor to the NZ Herald & the weekly newspapers.
Mr Munros house Craigieburn, was made available as a collection point for mail before there was any postal service.
At first, mail was brought overland to Orewa and then rowed to Te Kapa and from there up the river.
It is recorded the cutter Frances brought mail up the river on a weekly run dependant on the weather & tide.
Craigieburn, in its central location was an important link as mail could be sent on from there by pack horse to Lower Matakana (Sandspit).
By 1870, three post offices were gazetted – namely Mahurangi at Mahurangi heads, Craigieburn and Warkworth. Steamers such as the Lady Bowen were soon providing a more reliable service up the river to Warkworth, albeit only once a week.
Munro combined his role of postmaster with Rate collector, Highway Board member, secretary to a number of committees and for more than 11 years, he was a special Constable.
The Craigieburn post office closed with his death in 1884, but the farm retained the name under various owners.
The Munro family continued living there until 1905 when the property was advertised for lease. It was then described as 12 acres orchard, 80 acres grass and 42 acres bush.
In 1921, the owner Mr Coleman made an interesting discovery while renovating the house. Under the floorboards was a copy of the first edition of the NZ Herald, dated 1863, which had lain undisturbed for nearly 60 years.
When the Robinson family took possession in 1924, they found the original house was still there and on the wall could still be seen the VR sign which marked it as a designated post office in the reign of Queen Victoria.
While the Robinsons lived there, several children were born including Dorothy, a twin who lived only a few hours and was buried under a pear tree close to the house.
(From information supplied by Judy Waters – Warkworth & District Museum Society Inc)