This enclosed graveyard was reserved for burials of Jewish people.
Most of the first wave of Jewish immigrants to New Zealand in the 1840-1860 period, came from England where a serious depression had reduced economic opportunities.
Application for a cemetery
In 1842 David Nathan and John Montefiore applied for 0.4ha of land on the corner of Karangahape Road and Symonds Street, then on the outskirts of the town, for a Jewish Cemetery.
The land was granted and the cemetery was officially opened on 24 November 1843.
In a sad co-incidence, the first burial (which took place in 1844) was of six-month-old Catherine, the daughter of David and Rosetta Nathan.