The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Wellington Provincial District]
Wilson Bros. (James Wilson, Jun., and Archibald M. Wilson), Builders, Contractors, and Undertakers. Workshops and timber yards, 54 Cambridge Terrace. Private residence, 55 Cambridge Terrace. Telephone 905. Bankers, Bank of New South Wales. The founder of this important business was the late Mr. James Wilson, who established it in 1870. Born at Ayr, Scotland, in 1836, he was educated there and apprenticed to the building trade in Scotland. In 1862 he left, his native land for New Zealand, and arrived in Dunedin in 1863, but only stayed there two years, when he came to Wellington, and in 1870 started the present business. page 607 In 1892, while superintending the erection of Mr. Edward Anderson's premises in Willis Street, he had the misfortune to meet with an accident which resulted in his death. He left a family of six sons and two daughters, and of these two sons, James and Archibald, succeeded to the business, and have carried it on ever since with great success. They also added undertaking in 1894. The late Mr. Wilson was chairman of the Mount Cook School Committee for a number of years. He was also an elder of St. John's Presbyterian Church, and was a member of the mesonic fraternity, having belonged to the Lodge Waterloo No. 13, N.Z.C.C., and his son Archibald is now a member of the same lodge. Among the numerous buildings which the firm have erected may be mentioned the Wesley church and schools, St. John's church and schools, Te Aro House, Equitable Building Society's premises, premises for Mr. Wiggins, saddler, and Mr. Reichardt, Lambton Quay, residence for Mr. John Duthie, Messrs. Wardell and Co.'s new premises, and Mr. W. F. Shortt's new auction rooms, in Willis Street. The workshops in Cambridge Terrace are properly fitted up for the manufacture of all kinds of joinery work. They have also an extensive plant for contracting work, and have special facilities for the carrying out of all kinds of jobbing work. The eldest son, James, was born in 1866, and Archibald in 1870, and they were educated at the Mount Cook school and afterwards at the Wellington College. They both learnt the trade with their father, and, judging by the number of important contracts they have already completed satisfactorily, it is certain that their names will rank among the principal building firms of the City.