The United States has maintained a consular presence in New Zealand since 1838. The first consul was James Reddy Clendon. Born in England, Clendon was a ship owner and merchant who bought land and settled in New Zealand. In 1838 he was appointed by the U.S. Government as consul for New Zealand, based in the capital, which at that time was Russell, in the Bay of Islands. He held this position until 1841.
Today, Wellington is the seat of government. The largest population center is Auckland. This is reflected in the presence of the Embassy in Wellington and the Consulate General in Auckland. These offices represent U.S. interests throughout New Zealand and in the Cook Islands and Niue.