1866 in New Zealand
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Regal and viceregal
Government and law
- Speaker of the House — David Monro is knighted during the year and becomes Sir David Monro.
- Premier — Edward Stafford
- Minister of Finance — William Fitzherbert replaces Francis Jollie on 24 August. Jollie had only replaced Edward Stafford on 12 June.
- Chief Justice — Hon Sir George Arney
Main centre leaders
- The Canterbury Standard ceases publication. The Christchurch newspaper started in 1854.
- 5 March: The Nelson Evening Mail publishes its first issue. The Mail was the first daily newspaper published in Nelson. It changed its name to The Nelson Mail in 1993, and continues to publish today[update].
- 18 March: The Greymouth Evening Star publishes its first issue. The newspaper continues to publish today[update].
- 21 April: The Marlborough Express publishes its first issue. It became daily in 1880, and continues to publish today[update].
- May: The New Zealander stops publishing after its office burns down. The Auckland-based newspaper started publishing in 1845.
- 26 August: The Cook Strait telegraph cable between Whites Bay, Marlborough and Lyall Bay, Wellington is inaugurated for inter-island telegrams. 
- 22 September: The Ross Guardian starts publication. The newspaper continued until 1879.
- 12 October: The Battle of Omaranui takes place near Napier.
Major race winners
- New Zealand Cup winner: Naurmahal
- New Zealand Derby winner: Nebula
Ballinger Belt: Sergeant Christie (Otago)
- 13 May: Lindsay Buick, historian, journalist, politician (possibly in 1865)
- 20 August: Richard Barton, first European resident of Trentham, Upper Hutt (born 1790)
- 14 November (in England): Charles Torlesse, prominent surveyor for the Canterbury Association (born 1825)
- 9 December: Henry Monson, gaoler (born 1793)
- List of years in New Zealand
- Timeline of New Zealand history
- History of New Zealand
- Military history of New Zealand
- Timeline of the New Zealand environment
- Timeline of New Zealand's links with Antarctica
- Romanos, J. (2001) New Zealand Sporting Records and Lists. Auckland: Hodder Moa Beckett. ISBN 1-86958-879-7
- "Chapter 2: Early Statistical Sources — 19th Century" (PDF). Statistical publications 1840–2000. Statistics New Zealand. p. 12. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 November 2007.
- "Nelson Evening Mail". National Library of New Zealand. Retrieved 15 June 2008.
- "History of the NPA". New Zealand Press Association. Archived from the original on 9 May 2008. Retrieved 15 June 2008.
- "Marlborough Express". National Library of New Zealand. Retrieved 17 June 2008.
- "New Zealander". National Library of New Zealand. Retrieved 18 June 2008.
- The cable that united our islands Dominion Post, Wellington, September 3, 2016 pA10
- "Legal notices". West Coast Times. 21 September 1866. p. 3. Retrieved 21 June 2008.
- "HOKITIKA. March 31". North Otago Times. 1 April 1879. p. 2. Retrieved 21 June 2008.
- Ōmarunui NZ Wars memorial
- Te Ara Encyclopedia of New Zealand 1966: Rowing
- "Home (Star Boating Club)". Archived from the original on 21 July 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-16.
Media related to 1866 in New Zealand at Wikimedia Commons