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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]

The Honorable Jeremiah Matthew Twomey

The Honorable Jeremiah Matthew Twomey, Member of the Legislative Council, was born on the 15th of August, 1847, at Inchee Farm, County Kerry, Ireland. At the age of eighteen years he entered the General Post Office, Cork, and was employed there until he resigned and came to New Zealand in 1874. Before leaving his native country, Mr. Twomey was an occasional contributor to the press and magazines, and soon after his arrival in the Colony joined the staff of the Wellington “Tribune,” of which Mr. W. Hutchison was proprietor and editor. Subsequently, he was employed on the Wellington “Chronicle,” “Evening Post,”
Hon. J. M. Twomey.

Hon. J. M. Twomey.

page 85 “Wanganui Herald,” “Timaru Herald,” and “Press,” Christchurch, and purchased the “Temuka Leader” in 1881. He married Mary Teresa, eldest daughter of Mr. Christopher Hughos, of Melbourne, in 1882, and has four sons and four daughters. In 1884, he contested the Gladstone constituency, but was defeated by Captain Sutter. In his maiden speech he advocated a state bank, cheap money for farmers, protection of local industries, the acquisition of large estates for close settlement, working men's homes, etc. In 1887, he again contested the same constituency with Mr. A. E. G. Rhodes, but was defeated by sixty-three votes. His address on the development of the industries of the Colony attracted a great deal of attention, more especially in Otago, where it was reprinted and distributed in tens of thousands for electioneering purposes. It was also published in several weekly papers and largely quoted by some of the daily papers. Mr. Twomey is a firm believer in party government, and has a great objection to more than one candidate of a party standing for a seat. For this reason he has stood aside for others on various occasions. In 1896 a section of the Liberal party in Christchurch invited him to stand for the city, but owing to the way in which the party was split up, he declined the invitation. Mr. Twomey was called to the Legislative Council in June, 1898, in recognition of his services to the Liberal party.