In 1914, Professor Sir James Hight first raised the question of establishing a University Press in New Zealand. In 1947, after two wars and numerous reports, the University of New Zealand Press (UNZP) was established. Although it was deemed 'from beginning to end an unwanted child', it was kept afloat by J. C. Beaglehole's and Ian Gordon's efforts. One significant publication was Eric McCormick's work on the Dunedin artist Frances Hodgkins. By 1959, the Parry Committee recognized arguments for separate University Presses and agreed to dissolve the UNZP. It closed on 1st January 1962, the day the University of New Zealand ceased to exist. Prior to the establishment of the UOP, monographs based on inaugural lectures were produced, noticeably without the word 'Press'. Mattingly's Christianity in the Roman Empire (1955) was one such publication, with 1000 copies printed by the Dunedin firm of Coull Somerville & Wilkie and sold by Peter Havard-Williams, the University Librarian, for 7s 6d.
E. H. McCormick, The Expatriate. A Study of Frances Hodgkins. Wellington: New Zealand University Press, 1954. Brasch ND 1108 H6 M318; Harold Mattingly, Christianity in the Roman Empire. [Dunedin]: University of Otago, 1955.