Purau is located on Banks Peninsula, one of the southern bays forming Lyttelton Harbour.
European occupation started in 1843, when the Greenwood brothers started a farm here. They sold to the Rhodes brothers in 1847 (William Barnard and George, with the latter taking over management of the station). When Robert Heaton Rhodes, another of the Rhodes brothers, came to New Zealand in 1850, he took over Purau.
- "Purau". Christchurch City Libraries. Retrieved 24 June 2012.
- McLintock, A. H. (originally published in 1966, updated 15 November 2011). "Rhodes Brothers". An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 24 June 2012.
- Leopold George Dyke Acland (1946). "Land Tax And Advances To Settlers' Department". The Early Canterbury Runs: Containing the First, Second and Third (new) Series. Christchurch: Whitcombe and Tombs Limited. Retrieved 22 June 2012.
- Pinney, Robert. "George Rhodes". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved December 2011.