AUCKLAND , largest city in *New Zealand, situated in the North Island. The Auckland community was founded by David Nathan (a Londoner who removed from northern Kororareka in 1840) with the assistance of other Jewish traders. By 1842 a crown grant of land had been obtained for a cemetery, and in 1855 the congregation, now called Beth Israel, leased a wooden synagogue building. A breakaway congregation called "Gates of Hope," with Rev. J.E. Myers of London as minister, existed briefly in 1859. The congregation developed vigorously under the lay leadership of P.S. Solomon (later an outstanding Fijian lawyer and legislator) and Rev. Moses Elkin (1864–79). From 1880 to 1934, the Auckland community was under the spiritual leadership of Rabbi S.A. Goldstein. He was assisted until 1931 by Rabbi Solomon Katz, and then by Rabbi Alexander Astor (d. 1988). David Nathan, by then a business magnate, lived to open the Prince's St. Synagogue in 1885. He and his sons, L.D. and N.A. Nathan, were the community's lay leaders almost continuously during the period that Goldstein served as minister. The present synagogue and community center were dedicated in 1968.
The Auckland community is vigorous and prosperous. It provides many Jewish educational, cultural, social, and welfare amenities. Strong support has always been in evidence for Zionism and Israel, and Jewish education fostered. A Liberal community was formed in 1959. Auckland Jews have played a notable part in the city's banking, commercial, and industrial life as well as in the legal and medical professions. The many Jewish benefactors include members of the Myers, Davis, and Nathan families. There have been six Jewish mayors of Auckland, including P.A. Philips, H. Isaacs, Sir Arthur *Myers, Sir E.H. Davis, and D.M. Robinson. In 1967 the Jewish population numbered about 2,000 but by 2004 it had grown to about 3,100 (of a total population of 1.1 million), thanks to immigration from Russia, South Africa, and elsewhere.
L.M. Goldman, History of the Jews in New Zealand (1958), index. add. bibliography: A. & L. Gluckman, Auckland Jewry Past and Present (1994).
[Maurice S. Pitt]
Auckland, George Eden, 1st earl of
David Anthony Washbrook
Auckland (ôk´lənd), city (1996 pop. 345,768; urban agglomeration pop. 991,796), N North Island, New Zealand. It is situated on an isthmus and is the largest urban region and chief port of the country. The chief exports are frozen meats, dairy products, wool, hides, and iron and steel. Petroleum, iron and steel products, wheat, sugar, and fertilizers are the leading imports. Auckland is also New Zealand's leading industrial center. The chief industries are engineering (including shipbuilding and boilermaking), motor vehicle and chemical manufacturing, and food processing. It is also a fishing port and the chief base of the New Zealand navy. Maoris and persons of Maori ancestry comprise roughly one seventh of the populace, giving the city the largest Polynesian population in the world. Auckland was founded in 1840 and was the capital of New Zealand from 1841 to 1865. Educational institutions include the Univ. of Auckland and the Auckland Institute of Technology. The Auckland War Memorial Museum has a collection of Maori art. Other sights include a maritime museum and the 1,076-ft (328-m) Sky Tower. The Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, based in Auckland, won the America's Cup in 1995 and successfully defended in 2000, but lost in 2003. In the area of the city are many extinct volcano cones, including Mt. Eden (within the city) and Rangitoto (offshore).