The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Wellington Provincial District]
Farmers, Old Settlers, Etc
Farmers, Old Settlers, Etc.
Alexander, James, Settler, Wanganui. Mr. Alexander was born in Scotland in 1818, and died at Wanganui on the 14th of July, 1895. With his brother—Alexander—he landed in Wellington in 1840 per ship “Martha Ridgway,” and subsequently settled in Wanganui. It is largely due to the industry, courage, and foresight of the early settlers that the town and surrounding district owe their present advanced state. Recent arrivals have happily no experience of the privations endured by the hardy pioneers. After a time in the Wairarapa, Mr. Alexander returned to Wanganui and settled down as manager for the late Mr. W. B. Rhodes, to supply the troops in the commissariat department. Subsequently he took the contract himself, in conjunction with Mr. G. Y. Lethbridge, and later on with Mr. David Peat, until peace ensued, the Imperial troops being taken away in 1869. Thence till the end of his life he remained in partnership with his brother-in-law, Mr. David Peat. Mr. Alexander made many trips to the Old Country, and on the last occasion, during the winter of 1894, he contracted a severe cold, from the effects of which he never recovered. He was twice married, and leaves a widow and grown-up son and daughter by his first wife.
Allison, (Dr.) James, Sheepfarmer, Wanganui. This pioneer colonist landed in Wellington in 1840, afterwards settling in Wanganui, where he remained seven years. He then removed to the South Island, taking up a sheep-run in the Wairau Valley. In 1855 he sold out and again came to the Wanganui District. Twelve years later he left the Colony to visit the Old Country, but died on the voyage.
The late Dr. J. Allison.
Allison, Alexander, Farmer, “Letham,” Wanganui. A son of the late Dr. Allison, M.H.R., the subject of this sketch was born in 1849 at Boulderbank, Marlborough. He was educated partly at Home and partly at Wanganui. When seventeen years of age his father died on a voyage to England, and Mr. Allison took his place on the farm. “Letham,” which is 200 acres in extent, was part of his father's estate of “Lamb Hill,” and may justly be considered a model farm, its barns, stables, sheep-yards, cow-sheds, plantations, orchard, and garden, being splendidly kept. Mr. Allison breeds stud Lincolns, his flock being fully referred to in the New Zealand Flock Book, page 35, No. 78. Mr. Allison also owns a farm of 480 acres at Marton, which is leased by Mr. W. Old-field. In 1892 Mr. Allison married a daughter of Mr. W. H. Willway, a very early Christchurch settler, and has two sons.
Bamber, Thomas, Sheepfarmer, No. 2 Line, Wanganui. The son of an old settler, after whom he is named, Mr. Bamber was born in 1864 in Wanganui, and was educated in his native place. Brought up to a mercantile life, he adopted sheep-farming as his calling in 1888, and leases 400 acres, where he lives, and 640 acres, known as “Rusthall,” running on the two places some 2300 sheep and about fifty head of cattle. In 1887 Mr. Bamber married a daughter of Mr. C. J. Irving, of Russell, Bay of Islands, and has three daughters and a son.
Brann, John Henry Charles, Settler, No. 2 Line, Wanganui. This gentleman was for fifteen years the proprietor of a private school in Boulcott Street, Wellington, and previously was assistant to the late Mr. E. Toomath. Mr. Brann was born in 1827 in Kent, England, and was educated at the public schools. After a short term as a teacher in England, he came to Lyttelton in 1860 per ship “Gannanoque.” Closing his school in Wellington, he joined the service of the Education Board, continuing in it for fourteen years, chiefly at Clareville and Carterton, and retiring in 1894. Mr. Brann was married in 1866 to a daughter of Mr. S. Woodward, of Wellington, settler, and has three daughters and a son.
Brightwell, Thomas, Farmer, Wanganui. This old colonist, who was born in 1814 at Eydon, Northamptonshire, left England in 1834 for North America, and, after farming near Buffalo for a short period, embarked at New Bedford on a three years' whaling expedition to the South Seas, dipping into New Zealand waters in December, 1837. Landing at the Bay of Islands, he joined the whaler “Harriett,” which on leaving the bay became a total wreck. He then joined the Government cutter “Ranger.” In 1840 he bought some sections at the first land sale of the township of Auckland. In 1843 he came to Wellington and took up land in the Hutt District, but, the Maoris becoming troublesome, he enrolled in the Militia, serving afterwards in the armed police force. Mr. Brightwell was one of 600 men who shipped on H.M.S. “Driver,” the first steam man-of-war that came to the Colony, and landing at Waikanae, where he was stationed with thirteen others for eleven months under Sergeant Mills, they captured a party of rebels. After a stay of twelve years at the Hutt, Mr. Brightwell removed to the Wairarapa, where he spent some years before taking up his residence at Wanganui. He is, at the time of writing (February, 1897), nearly eighty-three, and is still hale and hearty.
Mr. T. Brightwell.
Brightwell, Edwin, Farmer, “Brooklands,” Westmere, Wanganui. Mr. Brightwell's farm of 200 acres, six miles from town, is extremely fertile and well-adapted for fruit-growing, twenty-five acres being so employed. Mr. Brightwell was born in 1845 in Wellington, where he was educated. After working on his father's farm at the Hutt, and then in the Wairarapa, he established himself in business in Wellington in 1870 as a general storekeeper, three years later opening in Palmerston North, where he remained for nine years. He then came to Wanganui, where he became a commission agent, from which he retired in favour of farming and fruit-growing pursuits.
Mr. E. Brightwell.
Cameron, Allan, Sheep and Cattle-farmer, Wanganui. Mr. Cameron resides on the well-known estate of “Marangai,” near Wanganui. Mr. Cameron's father, Mr. John Cameron, purchased the property in 1841, and resided there with his family till his death, in 1894. Mr. Allan Cameron was born in 1865 on the estate, and was educated in Wanganui, and also at Wellington College. The property consists of about 1200 acres of fine freehold land, running a flock of 2800 Lincoln sheep and a herd of 100 shorthorn cattle. In addition to the ordinary stock, both Mr. Cameron and his father before him have paid great attention to the breeding of racing stock, and Mr. Cameron, senior, will be remembered as the breeder of the steeplechaser “Norton.” A brother of this celebrated horse is at present on the place. Mr. Allan Cameron was a member of the Kaitoke Road Board for a considerable period. In Volunteer circles he was always prominent, being a member for several years of the well-known Alexandra Cavalry. Mr. Cameron is married, and has a son and a daughter.
Campbell, George William, Farmer, Brunswick, Wanganui. Born in 1849 in New Brunswick, Canada, Mr. Campbell came to New Zealand in 1853 with his father, who settled in the district and gave it its name. His early days were spent on his father's farm, where he remained until after his death, in 1867. On the outbreak of the Maori war he joined the Kai Iwi Cavalry, serving through the West Coast campaign. After the war he returned to the farm, where he has since resided. Mr. Campbell, in conjunction with his brother, acquired further property, dividing the whole between them. He now has a fine farm of 300 acres, eight miles from Wanganui, well grassed and subdivided into paddocks, and capable of carrying three sheep to the acre. Although he takes general interest in local matters, Mr. Campbell has never been prominently before the public, confining his energies to the work of his farm. He is married to a daughter of the late Mr. J. P. Watt, of “Lily Bank.”
Photo by A. Martin.
Mr. G. W. Campbell.
D'Anvers, Roland, Settler, “Culworth,” Upokongaro. The fifth son of the late Mr. Frederick Samuel D'Anvers, who was connected with the East India Company for many years, the subject of this notice was born at Hornsey, Middlesex, England, in 1844, and received his education at King's College, Canterbury, England. He travelled for some time after completing his college course, and in 1864 came to New Zealand. After a few years in Hawkes Bay, Mr. D'Anvers went to Rangitikei, where he was engaged in farming. In 1892 he settled on his fine estate, situated on a bend of the Wanganui River. For some years Mr. D'Anvers was a member of the Rangitikei Cavalry. In sporting matters he takes a great interest, being a member of the Wanganui Polo Club, and of the Wanganui Jockey Club.
Mr. R. D'Anvers.
Donald, John, Dairy-farmer, Westmere, Wanganui. Besides forty acres of leasehold property, Mr. Donald has seventy-two acres of freehold, which he uses as a dairy-farm. The stock page 1443 yards and cow-bails, which are of iron-bark, were erected by the late Mr. W. H. Watt, at a cost of £300. Born in Kincardineshire, Scotland, in 1841, Mr. Donald arrived in Auckland in 1884 in the ship “British King.” Shortly afterwards he went to Wanganui, and was employed on the farm he now occupies, till taking over the property several years ago.
Photo by A. Martin.
Mr. J. Donald.
Duncan, Andrew, Farmer, Wanganui. This old settler, who was born in 1805 at Curranshaw, where he was educated, came to New Zealand by the “Bengal Merchant” in 1840, and proceeded to Wanganui a few months later. The property of 105 acres, about two miles from Wanganui on the opposite side of the river, which was then taken up, is now occupied by one of his sons. Mr. Duncan was one of the earliest to bring sheep and cattle overland from Wellington. The first flock of fifty sheep, which he purchased for £3 per head, were reduced to six before he reached Wanganui, owing to the depredations of the Maoris and their dogs. Mr. Duncan was married in England, and brought his wife out to the Colony with him; she died in 1872, leaving two sons. In 1873 Mr. Duncan married again, and on his death, some years later, he left by his second wife three daughters and one son. He was a very large property-owner, having land in both Islands. During the latter part of his life, he made several trips to the Old Country.
The late Mr. A. Duncan.
Duncan, John, Sheepfarmer, Otairi Station, Otairi. Private residence, Durietown, Wanganui. Mr. Duncan landed in the Colony with his parents in January or February, 1840, having arrived per ship “Bengal Merchant.” For two years after arrival Mr. Duncan, senr., remained in Wellington, owing to difficulties in getting possession of his land from the New Zealand Company. The Otairi station is about ten miles from Hunterville, and consists of 20,000 acres of land. Originally it was all dense bush, but in a period of about 11 years all save about 2000 acres, retained for shelter purposes, has been felled and grassed. This splendid estate now carries 45,000 sheep, which are principally of the Lincoln variety. There are good station buildings, including large woolsheds fitted up with Wolseley shearing machines. During shearing about 1600 sheep are put through these sheds per day, about two months being occupied page 1444 in the process. Mr. Duncan has also 3300 acres of land at Waverley and Patea, and 3750 in Auckland. He is married, and has two sons and two daughters. The sons reside upon and manage the farm at Otairi. Mr. Duncan's father died in 1893, at the advanced age of 88 years.
Fernie Bros., Farmers, “Ohimiti,” Kaiwhaike, and “Aberfeldie,” Makirikiri, Wanganui. Both brothers were born at Wanganui, their father, Mr. John Fernie, who was a native of Scotland, coming to New Zealand in 1854. He returned to England, was married, and came out to the Colony again in 1860. Messrs. Fernie Bros. purchased their first land in 1881, beginning in a small way, but by dint of energy, shrewdness, and intelligence they now possess some 6000 acres, all improved, with the exception of reserves. Longwool sheep they find are not suited to their locality, and they are endeavouring to raise a breed adapted to the country.
Harris, Samuel Gregory, Settler, Wanganui. Born in 1816, near Plymouth, England, where he was educated, after engaging in farm-work for a few years Mr. Harris came to New Zealand, landing in 1841, under engagement with the New Plymouth Company. For two years he served as chainman on the survey staff in Taranaki, and was afterwards sawing wood in the bush till 1858, when he settled in Wanganui, securing a dairy-farm. When the Maori war broke out he saw service with the Militia, taking part in Stewart's Redoubt and other engagements. His town section in Wanganui was used for an artillery fort, which ultimately gave place to his present residence. After the Maori troubles were settled, Mr. Harris conducted a boardinghouse for many years in Wanganui, till failing health compelled him to retire. Mr. Harris, who was married on the 26th of July, 1841, has twelve children, and a large number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He has held various offices in the Wesleyan Church and different Sunday schools. He is a life-long total abstainer and non-smoker, to which he attributes his wonderful constitution.
Mr. and Mrs. S. G. Harris and Family.
Harrison, Henry Nevison, Farmer, Fordell. This old settler is the eldest son of the late Mr. H. S. Harrison, who is referred to in these pages as an exmember for Wanganui. Born in Wakefield, Yorkshire, in 1837, he [gap — reason: illegible]ccompanied his father's family to Wellington per ship “Bolton” at the age of three, but when ten years old he was sent to England for his education. On his return to the Colony, in 1855, he assisted for several years on his father's estate, and afterwards managed a station at Akitio, East Coast, subsequently residing on the farm of 880 acres, which he now works. Mr. Harrison is a breeder of horses, cattle, and Lincoln sheep. In sporting matters he supports the Wanganui Jockey Club, of which he is vice-president. Mr. Harrison was married to Miss Ross, of Wanganui, who died in 1886, leaving seven children.
Henson, John, Settler, Victoria Avenue, Wanganui. Born in Northamptonshire in 1821, Mr. Henson worked on the North Western, the Great Western, and the Eastern Counties railways for a number of years. He took part in the construction of the Paris section of the Paris-Belgium Railway for a number of years, and was afterwards employed in England on the Brackley and Bambury Railway. After four years in business on his own account at Potterspury, Northamptonshire, he came to New Zealand, and settled in Wanganui on the Industrial School Estate, of which he leased a portion for many years. Besides holding the freehold section in Victoria Avenue, where his house is situated, Mr. Henson owns other valuable town properties.
Photo by A. Martin.
Mr. J. Henson.
Higgie, Thomas, Sheep and Cattle-farmer, Okoia, Wanganui. This old colonist was born in 1841 on board the ship “Olympus,” on her voyage to New Zealand, Dr. Featherston being the ship's doctor. For a time Mr. Higgie's parents resided at Porirua, his father, it is said, being the first contractor doing business in Wellington. In 1849 the family removed to Wanganui, and at the age of twenty-five Mr. Higgie received his share of the family estate. During the second Maori war Mr. Higgie saw a good deal of active service, being guide and interpreter to Colonel Logan. For his services in this direction he was appointed lieutenant of the page 1445 Alexandra Cavalry, of which corps he was previously an active member. Mr. Higgie was a founder, and is at present chairman, of the Fordell Progressive Association; he was also one of the founders of the Wanganui Farmers' Alliance. He is the possessor of three fine properties—one of 200 acres at Okoia, where he has his homestead; another, of 400 acres, on the No. 2 Line; and the third, a Government run on the Wangaehu, of 1500 acres. A flock of 5000 sheep and 120 head of cattle depasture on these properties. The property at Okoia has been in his possession since 1856, and has a two-story dwelling, erected some sixteen years ago. Mr. Higgie is married to a daughter of Mr. Wilkinson, horticulturalist, of Oriental Bay, Wellington, and has four sons and three daughters.
Higgie, Morris, Sheepfarmer, “Rosmond,” Matarawa. The son of Mr. Thomas Higgie, an old settler at Okoia, who is referred to in these pages, Mr. M. Higgie was born in 1869 on the station which he now works. Educated at Wanganui Collegiate School, he was brought up to a country life on the Rosmond Estate, which is 400 acres in extent, and now carries 1100 fine Lincoln sheep, besides eighty head of cattle and horses. As a polo player Mr. Higgie is a member of the Warrengate Club, and played in the first Wanganui team for the Saville Cup in 1893; he is also interested in cricket and football.
Humphrys, William Darnell, Sheep and Cattle-farmer, “Waipakura,” Wanganui. Mr. Humphrys was born at Congleton, Cheshire, England, in 1870, and was educated at Oswestry, Shropshire, receiving his farming experience at the Colonial College, Suffolk. He came to New Zealand in 1890 to his brother, Mr. George Humphrys, of Hunterville, with whom he remained for eighteen months, when he bought the freehold of a property, “Ashcombe,” about fifteen miles from Wanganui, consisting of 750 acres. In 1896 he took a lease of the property which he now farms, consisting of 750 acres. In 1896 Mr. Humphrys was married to Miss Ethel Mary Ward, third daughter of Judge Ward.
Mr. W. D. Humphrys.
Lees, Allan Cameron, Settler, “Fassiefern,” No. 2 Line, Wanganui. A native of London, where he was born in 1841, Mr. Lees was educated in the north of Scotland. Landing at Wellington in 1861 per ship “Wild Duck,” he joined his uncle, the late Mr. John Cameron, of “Marangai,” with whom he gained valuable experience as a colonist. Mr. Lees, who has had a varied career on the diggings, and as a farmer at Fordell and at Waverley, is a brother of Dr. Cameron Lees, of Edinburgh, Queen's Chaplain and Dean of the Chapel Royal. In 1866 Mr. Lees was married to a daughter of Mr. J. E. Stent, of London, now resident with his son-in-law.
McDonnell, William, Settler, Wanganui. The son of a commander in the British Navy, who visited New Zealand as early as 1828, the subject of this notice was born in London in 1838, and three years later arrived with his parents at Wellington. Educated at a private school at the Bay of Islands, he subsequently worked on a survey party, also as a shepherd, and became a well-known rider. Captain McDonnell (as he afterwards became), in conjunction with his brother, now Colonel McDonnell, took up a sheeprun where now stands the town of Dannevirke, but on the outbreak of the Waikato war the run was disposed of, and the brothers left for the seat of action. Captain McDonnell saw service, and was in the most important engagements, throughout the Maori wars—in the Waikato, on the East Coast, Taranaki, and at Wanganui, serving with conspicuous bravery, and being several times wounded. He is now in receipt of a well-earned pension of £150 a year. After his military experiences, Captain McDonnell was for some time prospecting on the Kaimanawa Ranges; he also conducted the negotiations between Messrs. Martin, Studholme, and Russell, and the natives, for page 1446 the Karioi Run of 130,000 acres. Captain McDonnell was married in 1869, and has three sons and three daughters. He is a perfect Maori scholar, and is recognised as one of the best interpreters.
McGregor, Gregor, Settler, Wanganui. Among the early colonists of New Zealand, now passed away, must be numbered Mr. Gregor McGregor. Born in the Island of Uist in 1818, he received a sound grammar school education, and was afterwards apprenticed as a carpenter and boatbuilder. In 1840 he came to New Zealand in the ship “Blenheim,” and had the honour of being one of the first colonists to land in Wellington, where he worked for several years. Upon the breaking out of the Maori war, in 1845, he left New Zealand for New South Wales, taking his wife and family, whose lives were in danger, with him. In 1849 he returned to New Zealand, and entered into partnership with Mr. Wilson, taking up a block of 2000 acres in the Turakina Valley, to which other properties were afterwards added. Mr. McGregor was the first sheep inspector appointed in the district. In 1871 he divided his properties among his family, and went to reside in Wanganui, where he remained till his death, in 1876. Mr. McGregor was married in 1841 to a daughter of Mr. D. Fraser, and left eight sons and six daughters, who are settled in the district. He was a man of strict integrity, whose influence for good was always felt, taking a prominent part in any deserving work, and a consistent upholder of the church. His wife also took a leading part in any charitable or christian work.
The late Mr. G. McGregor.
McKain, J. M., Farmer, “Fernhill,” Wanganui. Born in Wellington, Mr. McKain's father, who arrived in Wellington by the second ship, being proprietor of the Halfway House at Porirua for many years, the subject of this notice went to Wanganui and became a stockman on a station for some time. After an experience on the Thames goldfields, he settled on the banks of the Wangaehu River, remaining nine years. In 1884 he leased “Fernhill,” which comprises 535 acres, and on which 1000 Lincoln sheep and fifty head of half-bred shorthorn cattle are grazed. In the Volunteer movement he served in the Caledonian Rangers and the Alexandra Cavalry. In 1880 Mr. McKain was married to a daughter of Mr. William Pickup, a very old settler in the province, and has six children.
McWilliam, Peter, Settler, Mars Hill, No. 2 Line, Wanganui. A native of Aberdeen, Scotland, where he was born in 1830, Mr. McWilliam came to Wellington in 1853, after spending two years in South Africa and about one year in Victoria on the Bendigo diggings. He has had a large colonial experience, having been engaged in the early days in the erection of flour-mills, driven by water and by wind, in house-building, and many other useful occupations. He was entrusted with the construction of the first printing press used for the Wanganui Chronicle, and a considerable portion of old Wanganui was built by him. At the time of the war, Mr. McWilliam was one of the corps that erected the bullet-proof stockade on Rutland Hill. His property, known as “Mars Hill,” consists of 200 acres, which has been transformed from bush and scrub to a high state of cultivation. He has recently returned from a trip to South Africa, an interesting account of which appeared in the columns of the Chronicle. The writer had the pleasure of inspecting a large number of very fine horns, which were obtained during the trip. In 1854 Mr. McWilliam was married to a daughter of the late Mr. Anderson, of Preston-kirk, Scotland.
Mr. and Mrs. P. McWilliam.
Murray, John Blair, Sheepfarmer, “Southern Grove,” Westmere, near Wanganui. The property is 1400 acres in extent, 600 being freehold; nearly 700 acres have been under the plough, and about 3500 sheep and 130 head of cattle and twenty-five horses are depastured on the property. There is a substantial dwelling of eleven rooms, with an orchard of one acre adjoining there are also four acres of orchard planted on another part of the properly. Mr. Murray, who was born in 1849 in Glasgow, was educated at the Glen School in that city, apprenticed to Nelson's Locomotive Works, and was afterwards in Messrs. Randolph and Elder's Marine Engine Works. After two years' experience in America he returned to Scotland for a short time, and came to Dunedin about 1871. A month or two later he came to Wanganui, and about a year afterwards leased part of the property now known as “Gordon Park.” He afterwards removed to Upokongaro, and after a few years went to Taranaki, where he continued farming till 1882. Returning to Wanganui he leased 797 acres, and about seven years later he purchased 600 acres in close proximity to his leasehold. Mr. Murray takes a great interest in agricultural and pastoral matters, and is a member of the Wanganui Agricultural and Pastoral Association, under whose auspices he has successfully exhibited on many occasions. He is also a director and one of the original promoters of the Wanganui Freezing Works, and chairman of the local school committee.
Owen, William Thomas, Farmer, “Featherston,” near Wanganui. The property, which is about ten miles from Wanganui, consists of 942 acres on which sheep and cattle are depastured. Mr. Owen came to Wellington in 1852 by the ship “Stately,” and settled in Wanganui in 1857, commencing business as a chemist and druggist.
Palmer, George William, “Woodlands,” Westmere, Wanganui. The freehold property of 400 acres, six miles from Wanganui, which was purchased by Mr. Palmer in 1892, has been highly improved, and the homestead is an imposing two-story building, commanding lovely views. The son of the late Mr. George Palmer, the well-known shipbuilder of Jarrow-on-Tyne, the subject of this notice was born at Dacre, Cumberland, in 1858, and was educated at Eton. He subsequently joined his father in business as a shipowner. Six years later he retired from this business and farmed his estate in Hampshire. Landing in Wellington per R.M.S. Doric” in 1891, six months afterwards Mr. Palmer removed to Wanganui. He is a great lover of out-door sports, and has rendered able service as captain of the Wanganui Golf Club. Mr. Palmer married a daughter of the Rev. L. Wickham, Twyford, Winchester, and has four sons.
Papanui Station, which is the properly of Messrs. Studholme, consists of 4000 acres of land in the Mangamahu District. A few years ago it was all in its native condition; now more than 2000 acres have been cleared and brought into cultivation, being mostly laid down in well-selected grasses. The homestead is delightfully situated on the banks of the Turakina River.
Parkes, Frederick Richard, Settler, St. John's Hill, Wanganui. This old colonist was born in London in 1831, and came to New Zealand in 1840 per ship “Aurora,” landing on the Petone beach. In Wanganui his father selected 100 acres of land on St. John's Hill, where the son still resides. During the war scare of 1847 Mr. Parkes was one of the first to enlist in the Volunteers, with whom he remained for seventeen years. He was for many years captain of the Wanganui Rifle Volunteers, and was chairman of the Mosstown School Committee for fourteen years; as an elder of the Presbyterian Church he has held office for many years. Mrs. Parkes is a daughter of the late Mr. George Aitken, of Waverley, and the family now numbers three sons and seven daughters, five having died.
Peake, Henry Lacy, Settler, Plymouth Street, Wanganui. Born in 1832, in Denbigh, North Wales, Mr. Peake came out to Australia in 1852, landing at Melbourne. Twelve months were spent on the goldfields and in gaining a knowledge of station-life, when Mr. Peake came across to New Zealand per barque “Eliza,” arriving in Wellington in 1853. He subsequently visited the Canterbury settlement per s.s. “Ann,” which was a small screw steamer, fitted with fifty-horse-power engines, and sent out by the P. and O. Company to report on the New Zealand trade. On her return, Mr. Peake proceeded to Wanganui and purchased land on the native boundary near Kai Iwi. He joined the Volunteers during the troubles with the natives in 1860, and was appointed lieutenant three years later. In 1865 Mr. Peake was promoted to the position of captain, and was stationed at Woodall's Redoubt, afterwards being engaged in superintending the river transport between Wanganui and Pipiriki; he was also with the colonial troops attached to General Cameron's force on the West Coast of the North Island. During 1868 he served with the Kai Iwi and Wanganui Cavalry under Colonel Whitmore, and received the New Zealand war medal. After twenty-five years of farm life Mr. Peake has retired, and has taken up his residence in Plymouth Street.
Mr. H. L. Peake.
Peake, John William, Settler, St. John's Hill, Wanganui. Born in 1830 in Denbigh, North Wales, Mr. Peake was brought up as a barrister of the Middle Temple, but disliking the law as a profession came out in 1852 to Australia, and proceeded to the gold-diggings at Bendigo, Ballarat, and Forest Creek, where he remained twelve months with varied success. Coming across to New Zealand per ship “Eliza,” he landed in Wellington in 1853. A few months were spent in looking for a suitable property, when Mr. Peake took up a large tract of country on the native boundary near Kai Iwi, where he lived on friendly terms with the Maoris and farmed a large part of their property. After farming for sixteen years Mr. Peake removed to Wanganui, where he built a fine residence for himself on St. John's Hill; this he subsequently sold to Mr. Peter Bell, who afterwards sold to Mr. A. J. Parsons, the place being known as “St. Leonards.” In 1870 he took a trip to the Old Country, and returned after a holiday extending over six months. In 1873 he sold out his interest in the Kai Iwi property, and when Mr. Bell purchased his residence on St. John's Hill, two years later, Mr. Peake took up 100 acres within easy distance of his former residence, and built a large twelve-roomed house on the property, which is prettily situated and well planted with ornamental trees. From this eminence one may obtain a splendid view of the surrounding country and of the Wanganui River. Mr. Peake continued to farm this property till 1893, page 1450 when he retired from taking any active part in farm life. In the sixties he sat as a member of the Wellington Provincial Council for a few years. Mrs. Peake, who was a daughter of the late Mr. J. Garner, of Wanganui, died in 1893, leaving a family of two sons and three daughters.
Pointum Estate, the property of Mr. T. B. Williams, which is situated on the No. 2 Line at Matarawa, consists of 332 acres of fine land, which is in a high state of cultivation. There is a large two-story residence, besides all necessary out-buildings. About 800 sheep are wintered on the farm, in addition to thirty head of cattle and sixteen horses.
Mr. Alexander Murray Thompson, Manager of the Pointum Estate, was born in 1865 at “The Grove,” Marlborough. Till attaining the age of nineteen he was engaged in pastoral pursuits, but for four years subsequently he was learning the trade of a carpenter. Returning to a country life, he had charge of Kenepern Estate, Marlborough, for three years; he was appointed to the position he now holds in May, 1895. Mr. Thompson was married in 1889 to a daughter of Mr. John Walls, of Foxton, baker, and has a son and a daughter.
Poole, Joseph Edward, Turf Commission Agent, Maida Villa, Wilson Street, Wanganui. Mr. Poole was connected with the Wanganui Jockey Club for seventeen years. Born in London in 1841, and educated in Kent, he arrived in Auckland when nine years of age by the ship “Monarch.” He went into mining pursuits at the Thames, afterwards going to the West Coast, and finally settling in Wanganui, where he entered into partnership with the late Mr. Frank Hill, as totalisator proprietors. Mr. Poole died in 1895. No one was better known to the racing public than the genial “Joe,” whose sympathy and generosity in cases of distress need no dilating upon. Many miss his unostentatious help, and may say with the immortal bard, “We could have better spared a better man.” Needless to say he was well known as a turf commission agent throughout the Colony, and as a member of the principal jockey clubs. Race-goers will remember his colours, amber and black hoops, and also the many winners running in his name, such as “Strenuous,” “Speculation,” “Cheque,” “Worth,” “Lethe,” etc.
Reid, William, Settler, Plymouth Street, Wanganui. Born on the 11th of June, 1823, in the parish of Banff, Banffshire, Scotland, where Mr. Reid was early engaged in farming pursuits, he gained considerable experience in farming and cattle-breeding on different estates. He came out to Lyttelton in March, 1851, per ship “Travencore,” when there was but one house in Lyttelton and one in Christchurch, viz., Mr. Godly's and Mr. Britton's respectively. The township of Christchurch was then a network of survey lines through a bed of tutu and fern. After working for eighteen months on the Heathcote, Mr. Reid went to Wellington, and thence to Wanganui, in November, 1852. Settling in the Matarawa Valley, he commenced farming with a few cows, ultimately purchasing land on the Wangaehu, of which he still holds 1150 acres, under the managership of his son, James Alexander. Mr. Reid also has two farms on the Waimate Plains, of about 300 acres each. Mr. Reid's town residence, which was erected in 1876, the grounds fronting Plymouth, Campbell, and Bell streets, is one of the best-appointed in Wanganui. Mr. Reid has three sons and three daughters.
Mr. W. Reid.
Rice, Samuel, Sheep and Cattle-farmer, “Brandon,” Wanganui. The farm of 486 acres of first-class land depastures 800 Lincoln sheep and fifty head of cattle; it has been occupied by Mrs. Rice's family since, 1852. At the back of the homestead lies a fine page 1451 orchard, in which Mr. Rice takes a great interest. Born at Paisley in 1833, and educated in Scotland, he came to Victoria in 1852 and spent some time on the Ballarat goldfields. Returning to Melbourne, he acted as storeman to the firm of Messrs. Westgarth, Ross and Co., whom he left to open a business as a storekeeper on the goldfields; here he remained till 1866, when he crossed to New Zealand. In 1868 Mr. Rice was married to the daughter of Mr. A. Williamson, a well-known colonist in the early times of Wanganui, and has a son.
Sherriff, Arthur, Sheepfarmer, “Rusthall,” No. 2 Line, Wanganui. A son of one of the early settlers, who came to the Colony in the forties under the auspices of the New Zealand Company, Mr. Sherriff was born in 1850 in Brighton, England, and came to Wellington per ship “Wild Duck” in 1863. Educated in England and in New Zealand, he was brought up to the life of a sheepfarmer, and has long been a settler as above. “Rusthall” is a valuable property of 700 acres, capable of supporting four sheep to the acre. With the exception of fifty acres, on which is the pretty homestead surrounded by lovely green lawns, the estate is leased. As a Mason, Mr. Sherriff belongs to Lodge Tongariro, Wanganui. In 1887 he was married to a daughter of Mr. G. H. Page, solicitor, of Hay, Brecknockshire, South Wales, and has two sons.
Smith, Charles, Settler, “Te Korito,” Wanganui. Born in Wiltshire, England, in 1833, this old settler was educated at the University College School, London, where he was a schoolmate of Mr. (afterwards Sir) Julius Vogel. Mr. Smith was articled to a lawyer in London, but took a fancy for farming, and went to an agricultural college till 1859, when he decided to come to New Zealand. Arriving in Wellington by the ship “Hastings,” he came to Wanganui and took up his farm of about 2700 acres. When the war broke out he joined the Militia, afterwards becoming lieutenant. Mr. Smith runs 3000 sheep and 400 head of cattle on his fine property. In local matters he has always taken a great interest, and for many years was a member of the local road board. He made a trip to his native land in 1881, and also in 1893. Mr. Smith is a member of the Royal Colonial Institute, London, and has been a member of the New Zealand Institute since its inception.
Taylor, Thomas Ballardie, J.P., Settler, Wanganui. Born in Anstruther, Fifeshire, Scotland, in 1816, Mr. (better known as Captain) Taylor was drowned in Cook's Strait off the brig “Lady Denison” on the 16th of July, 1871. At an early age he went to sea, where he served his apprenticeship for four years, and prior to coming out to Sydney in 1840, per ship “Planten,” he joined Mr. W. H. Watt, founding the well-known firm of Taylor and Watt. The first vessel (“Catherine Johnson”) purchased by the firm traded between Wellington and Wanganui. The ships “Tyne,” “Governor Grey,” “Edward Stanley,” “Seagull,” “Yarra,” “Lady Denison,” the brigantine “William,” and several others were afterwards added. They acquired the Westmere and Tayforth estates and valuable town properties, and successfully carried on business as wholesale merchants for many years. For some years Captain Taylor occupied a seat on the Town Board, and displayed general interest in the welfare of Wanganui. A shilling subscription was started to defray the cost of a monument to his memory, and, although the subscription list was filling rapidly, his partner, Mr. W. H. Watt, elected to provide a memorial at his own cost. This was unveiled by the late Sir William Fox on the 21st of April, 1872. It stands in the grounds attached to St. Paul's Presbyterian Church, and bears a suitable inscription.
The late Captain T. B. Taylor.
Taylor, Thomas Chalmers, Settler, Bell Street, Wanganui. The eldest son of the late Mr. T. B. Taylor, the subject of this notice was born in 1848 at Wanganui. Completing his course of study at Madras College, St. Andrew's, Scotland, Mr. Taylor returned to New Zealand in 1866. After a few years in Wellington with Messrs. W. and G. Turnbull and Co., with whom he acquired mercantile experience, he returned to Wanganui, and on his father's death in 1871, with Mr. J. P. Watt be took over the business of the firm. The new firm of Taylor and Watt continued for four years, when Mr. Taylor sold out to his partner and became manager for his mother at “Belmont,” near Tayforth, which position he occupied until her death. Mr. Taylor takes a lively interest in all local matters. He is a manager of the Presbyterian Church, and a member of the Sons and Daughters of Temperance Society.
Watt, John Paton, Settler, Wanganui. A brother of the late Mr. W. H. Watt, M.H.R., and a son of Mr. George Paton Watt, of Fife, Scotland, the subject of this notice was born in Dundee in 1825. He arrived in the Colony in 1846, and was for some years captain of the ship “Governor Grey,” trading between Wanganui, Wellington, and Sydney. In 1860 he purchased the fine estate known as “Lily Bank,” where he resided till 1867, when he died leaving four daughters and one son. This property was purchased from the executors by his widow—Mrs. Margaret Watt—who landed in New Zealand in 1850. She survived her husband nearly thirty years, her decease taking place in 1895.
Watt, William Thomas Whillen, Farmer, Wanganui. This gentleman, who was a son of the late Captain J. P. Watt, was born in 1857 in Wanganui, where he was educated. For several years before his death in 1892, he managed the “Lily Bank” Estate, together with his own property of 500 acres at Tokomaru. He had been ailing for nearly nine years, and was confined to his room for nearly twelve months before his death. Although a young farmer, Mr. Watt was well known on the West Coast as a judge of pure-bred sheep, a noted prize-winner for Lincolns, and a prominent member of the Alexandra Cavalry. He won the troop's champion belt, besides a silver flask and a handsome marble clock. These trophies are greatly prized by his sister—Miss A. P. Watt, of “Lily Bank”. The engraving shows the late Mrs. J. P. Watt (on the left), Mr. W. T. W. Watt, Miss A. P. Watt (on the right), and Mrs. W. K. Stewart (a sister of Mr. Watt) in the foreground.
Woon, Garland William, Ex-Civil Servant, Rao[unclear: ri]kia. Mr. Woon's father was the Rev. William Woon, who was one of the early missionaries, and in company with Messrs. Watkin and Turner, was sent out by the Wesleyan Missionary Society in 1830 to the Friendly Islands. They travelled in a whaler and called at the Bay of Islands en route. The Rev. Mr. Woon remained in Tonga for about three years, and while resident in Nukualofa, the subject of this article was born. The reverend gentleman and his family then removed to Hokianga, on the north-west of New Zealand, where they remained until the Hone Heke war in the year 1845. About the latter year the Rev, Mr. Woon removed to the Mission Station, Heretoa, on the Waimate Plain, about six miles from Hawera, where he was stationed, till, on account of failing health, he became superannuated, subsequently removing to Wanganui, where be died in the year 1858. Mr. G. W. Woon was apprenticed to Messrs. Williamson and Wilson, of the old New Zealander office, Auckland. He served the full term of five years as an apprentice, and on leaving their employ, started the Taranaki Herald newspaper in New Plymouth in August, 1852. Mr. Woon conducted this journal for some sixteen years, during which period the most notable events in connection with the Taranaki war occurred after the Waireka fight, which occurred in the month of March, 1860, and which was the commencement of the war. Mr. Woon joined the volunteers as a private, and served right through the campaign, subsequently receiving a commission as ensign of the New Zealand Militia, and rising in rank respectively to the position of lieutenant, and subsequently as captain. Captain Woon was in active service on many occasions in connection with this memorable portion of New Zealand's history, and was a recipient of the New Zealand war medal. In 1868 Mr. Woon sold out his interest in the Taranaki Herald to Mr. Henry Weston, the present proprietor. He then returned to Auckland, and joined the Provincial Government service, occupying the position of chief clerk in the Public Works Department, until the year 1876. That year will be remembered as the one in which provincial governments were abolished by Act of the General Assembly. Soon after this Mr. Woon received an appointment as clerk in the Resident Magistrate's Court at Wanganui. He also filled the office of sheriff, registrar of births, deaths and marriages, registrar of electors, returning officer of the electoral district of Wanganui, which positions he held until the year 1892, when he retired on a retiring allowance, in consequence of his having attained the age of over sixty years. Mr. Woon and two of his sons have a farm at Raorikia, about fourteen miles up the Wanganui River nearly 700 acres in extent. This property they have held for a period of about ten years. When first purchased, the land was all in rough native bush, but by perseverance and steady work it has been nearly all brought into cultivation by his sons, and affords pasturage for a considerable flock of sheep. Mr. Woon's third son is employed in the post-office, Wanganui. Mr. Woon is a very old colonist, having been over sixty-one years in the Colony, and, singular to relate, notwithstanding all the advantages afforded by the splendid steamers which trade to all parts of the world, he has never been on the blue water since coming to the Colony in the early days with his parents. Mr. Woon being a Maori linguist he is engaged in Wanganui as a licensed interpreter. [Since the above was in type Mr. Woon has died, passing away in the latter part of 1895, at Wanganui.]
The late Mr. G. W. Woon.
York, William, Settler, Guyton Street, Wanganui. Born in 1829 in Coldstream, Berwickshire, Mr. York worked as a carpenter in London for three years. Landing in Brisbane in 1854, after a year he went to Sydney, where he helped to construct the first railway station. As a goldminer he was at the “Woolshed” diggings in Victoria. After his arrival in New Zealand, he was at the Whakamarina diggings for a time. He worked at his trade in Dunedin, and subsequently with the late Mr. John McKenzie in Wellington, where he assisted in the erection of the Government Buildings and the library in the Parliamentary Buildings. In 1866 he established himself in business in Wanganui as a builder, and among the many buildings he erected, the Presbyterian Church calls for special mention. In 1873 Mr. John Duncan admitted Mr. York as a partner, and the firm of Duncan and York carried on the business page 1454 till 1879, when Mr. Cornfoot was admitted a partner instead of Mr. Duncan. In 1883 the Wanganui Sash and Door Company, which bought out Messrs. York and Cornfoot was founded. Mr. York has a farm known as “Long Acre” on the No. 3 Line, adjoining Dr. Grace's. He is married, and has one son.