The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]
The first settlers of the Ashburton district went there in the early fifties as squatters and flockowners. Mr. Thomas Moorhouse took up a large run near the present town, and Mr. Moore, of Glenmark, settled similarly at Wakanui. Other settlers arrived gradually, and it was those sturdy, persevering pioneers who began the efforts, which, having been worthily continued by their successors, have transformed the wilderness into a veritable agricultural paradise.
In 1863 Ashburton consisted only of an accommodation house, and the stables for the horses of the Christchurch-Timaru coach, which was, in fact, a spring cart, drawn by a shaft horse and an outrigger. The accommodation house was situated on the banks of the Ashburton river, close to where the present traffic bridge now stands, and was kept by Mr. William Turton, who also acted as fordsman on the river. The first store was established midway in the sixties by a Mr. Louis Berliner, but the business subsequently came into the hands of Mr. Donald Williamson
Ashburton is named after Lord Ashburton, who was one of the members of the Canterbury Association, which had purchased a large tract of land in the South Island, lying between the Waipara and the Ashburton rivers, from the New Zealand Land Company, at ten shillings per acre. This land the Association sold, in lots to suit intending colonists, at £3 per acre. Out of this money it deducted the ten shillings per acre it had paid for the land, and devoted ten shillings towards the formation of roads; £1 towards churches and schools; and £1 as a subsidy to the passage money of the early colonists. Among the first settlers from the Old Country there were many University men, and the agricultural labourers they brought out were picked from the English counties. Cropping first commenced in the district in the early sixties.
The town of Ashburton was first surveyed and partly pegged out in 1863, by Mr. Robert Park; and the survey was subsequently completed as the demand for sections and building sites arose.
In 1865 Mr. John Grigg took up the then little known but afterwards famous Longbeach run, and in 1867, and for several years following, he employed a large body of workmen to drain the swampy land and fence it. This property has been transformed into one of the best model farms in the world. Mr. Grigg's enterprise attracted a large amount of attention, and the fertile land of the surrounding country was soon taken up by energetic settlers.
Mr. Charles Reid, of Westerfield, was another of the prominent early colonists who did much for the welfare of the Ashburton district, and the success he achieved was only the due reward of his indomitable enterprise.
The flood of 1868, which did so much damage in South Canterbury, was not so destructive in its results at Ashburton page 814 as elsewhere, the damage done being confined in a great measure to the neighbourhood of the rivers. Indeed, the district has always suffered more from drought than flood, and even in the sixties, the question of water for their stock was an ever absorbing topic with farmers, and settlers were reluctant to take up land any distance from the river. In 1869, Mr. Fooks, the present borough engineer, constructed a water-race about six miles in length on Mr. Reid's farm at Westerfield, and obtained his supply from the Ashburton river. Both prior to and after the execution of this work most of the engineers in the province declared it to be impracticable. The then Provincial Government, however, took the matter up and inaugurated a system of water-races in the Courtenay district. In the early seventies Mr. Duncan Cameron, of the Springfield estate, gave an irresistible impetus to the water-race system, by what he did in providing a supply for his own extensive property. Later on, the Ashburton County Council followed the good example, and in a few years had brought streams of water over the whole surface of the Ashburton plains. These races aggregate over 1,500 miles, and every farm in the county is now supplied with sufficient water.
In respect to roads and bridges, the district of Ashburton has long been well off, and, apart from other sources of supply, the Provincial Government, in 1873, voted a sum of £20,000 as a special grant to the road boards for road construction. The expenditure of this money was a considerable factor in the rise and progress of the district, by attracting many farmers and contractors, together with labour and capital.
The nor'-westers, which are very prevalent on the plains, are not now so destructive in their effects as they were in the early days, when there was not a single tree to check their violence. Although these winds are somewhat enervating, the unpleasantness is counter-balanced by some of the other results, as the atmosphere is thus cleared of miasma and all impurities
The Ashburton County Council was inaugurated in 1877. Mr. W. C. Walker, the present Minister of Education, was the first chairman, and among the first councillors were Messrs John Grigg and Charles Reid. Mr. Mainwaring was appointed clerk to the Council, and Mr. Baxter county engineer, and both these gentlemen still fill their respective positions.
The first Ashburton Borough Council met in 1878. Mr. Thomas Bullock was the first mayor, and Messrs Donald Williamson, Weymouth Roberts, Robert Shearman, James Campbell, Andrew Orr, George Parkin, Edward Saunders, Rudolph Friedlander, and Joseph Ivess were the first councillors. Messrs Thomas Bullock, Hugo Friedlander, Donald Williamson, Rudolph Friedlander, Thomas page 815 Sealy, Joseph Sealy, Alfred Harrison. David Thomas, John Orr, Charles Reid William Henry Collins, and others have been mayors of the borough, and in conjunction with their fellow councillors, they have done much for the welfare of the town. Mr. Charles Braddell was the first Town Clerk, and Mr. C. E. Fooks has been borough engineer since the inception of municipal government.
The recorded population of the borough, within the statutory boundaries, 2,322, does not represent the actual number of residents in the business centre of the district; if the immediate suburbs of Hampstead and Allenton were included, it would amount to at least 5,000. It is highly probable that the present borough boundaries may be extended so as to include these suburbs; and when this occurs, the town will take up, statistically, a far more important position in the list of New Zealand boroughs. The present rates realise over £1,000 annually, and the borough reserves bring in a rental of about £600 a year.
The town is well built, and the streets and houses lighted with gas. With an ample supply of water always flowing in the side channels, the sanitary arrangements are excellent, and Ashburton is one of the healthiest places in New Zealand. The local industries comprise a woollen factory, flour mills, a brewery, and the Fairfield freezing works.
Ashburton has a domain, which was set apart at the laying out of the town, and comprises about 100 acres. The first Domain Board was appointed in 1874 by the New Zealand Government, but in 1879, the Borough Council was constituted the Domain Board. In 1880 a water-race was constructed by the Borough Council from the Wakanui mill race, and water was brought into the domain from a distance of about two miles from the intake at the Ashburton river. The water was permitted to flow into the natural gullies, which were trimmed and banked up, with the result that the Ashburton Domain contains to-day one of the prettiest artificial lakes in the colony. Winding its way round the northern part of the domain, it forms a horse-shoe bend, and lower down it surrounds a higher plot of land, thus forming an island. The banks are lined with several varieties of willow trees, and shrubs, and the island is beautifully and densely wooded. There the native game resort and breed, and on the opening of the shooting season hundreds of wild ducks make their appearance on the placid waters of the lake, where they are secure from the ravages of the sportsman. There are black and white swans on the lake, in which thousands of perch and other fish abound. The domain also contains a cycling track, a cricket ground, swimming baths, a bowling green, and tennis and croquet lawns. A sum of £2,000 has been spent by the Borough Council in the laying out of the domain, but as the domain is, with its beautiful walks and well-kept gardens, one of the beauty spots of the Middle Island, the money has been wisely expended.
Hares are very numerous in the surrounding country, and in the Ashburton river the successful angler obtains some of the largest trout in New Zealand.
Post Office And Telegraph Department. Ashburton. The business of the Post Office and Telegraph Department in Ashburton is conducted in a large and handsome building, which was begun in 1900, and was completed in November, 1901. It is of brick, faced with Oamaru stone and cement and cost about £5,300. There is a clock tower, and a chiming clock is now (June, 1903) in course of construction. It will cost £750, one-half of which has already been paid by the people of Ashburton. The postmaster, who is also in charge of the Telegraph Department, is Mr. W. H Renner, who succeeded Mr. St. George Douglas in 1897. The combined staff numbers twenty.
The Railway Station at Ashburton is in East Street, close to the entrance to the Domain. Although the station has been considerably enlarged during the past few years, having been added to every now and then, it is hardly equal to the requirements of the town. It has a fair-sized goods shed, and engine sheds and, off the platform there are, besides the offices, refreshment rooms, and waiting rooms; also a bookstall. The present stationmaster, Mr. W. Bass, took charge in 1960.
The Ashburton County Council has jurisdiction over a district which has an area of 2542 square miles and a population of 11,000 persons. The Council has offices in the borough of Ashburton, where it meets once a month. The ratable property in the county is valued at £3,465,941, and there is a general rate of 1/4d. and a special rate of 1–5thd. in the £. Mr. F. Mainwaring is clerk, and Mr. W. Baxter engineer to the council.
Mr. Charles John Harper, Chairman of the Ashburton County Council, is a sheepfarmer at Upper Hackthorn, Ashburton. He is a native of Eton, Buckinghamshire, England, third son of Bishop Harper, sometime Primate of New Zealand, and was educated at Rossal Hall, and at the Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester, Gloucestershire. In 1855 he arrived at Auckland by the ship “Duke of Portland,” in which Bishops Selwyn and Patteson were also passengers. On coming to Canterbury, in 1858, Mr. Harper took up the Malvern Hills and Lake Coleridge runs, and afterwards farmed at Brackenfield, Amberley, for ten years. He also owned the Hackthorn estate in the Ashburton district. Mr. Harper has devoted much of his time to public affairs. He was a member of the Old Rakaia Road Board, and also a member of the Canterbury Provincial Council for five years, until the abolition of the provinces. In 1883 he was elected a member of the Upper Ashburton Road Board, of which he was chairman in 1898, and again in 1901. He has been chairman of the Rangitata Road Board since 1886, since which he has also been a member of the Ashburton County council, of which he has been chairman since 1899. Mr. Harper was married in February, 1868, to Miss Cracroft, a first cousin of the late Sir Cracroft Wilson. He resides at Upper Hackthorn, about sixteen miles from Ashburton, on the Mount Somers branch line.
Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. C. J. Harper.
Councillor Stephenson Chapman, of Willowby, has been a Member of the Ashburton County Council for the past four years. He has also been chairman of the Willowby school committee ever since the school was opened, has been prominently identified with the Ashburton Agricultural and Pastoral Association since its inception, and has done good service as a member of the Longbeach Road Board. Mr. Chapman was born in 1847, is a son of Mr. T. G. Chapman, formerly of Lincolnshire, England, and was brought up to farming. He arrived in New Zealand in the ship “Glenmark,” in January, 1865, with his parents and the rest of the family. After farming in the Templeton district for about nine years, he and his brother, under the style of Chapman Bros., took up page 817 their present farm at Willowby. The property comprises 588 acres of good agricultural land, which has all been successfully cultivated; the wheat crop for 1899 averaged forty-five bushels per acre. Messrs Chapman Bros. own another farm, which was originally part of the Lagmhor estate; it is used chiefly for grazing, and carries two sheep to the acre. Several good pedigree mares are kept at the homestead. Mr. Chapman is highly respected in the Ashburton district, and wherever he is known, and his genial manner has won him a large circle of friends. He was married, in 1879, to a daughter of Mr. James Osborne, of Tai Tapu, and has three sons and five daughters.
Councillor S. Chapman.
Councillor Hugo Friedlander has been commercially connected with Ashburton for nearly thirty years. He has extensive interests in the town and district, and has always been more or less actively associated with the administration of the local governing bodies.
Councillor Thomas Harrison is referred to elsewhere, as owner of the Hackthorn estate, in the district of Hinds.
Councillor John Lambie, J.P., of Kyle, Member of the Ashburton County Council, was born on the 4th of May, 1840, in the parish of Craigie and district of Kyle, Ayrshire, Scotland. His ancestors had been farmers in that district for many generations, and he also was brought up to farming. In 1860 the Provincial Government of Auckland were offering free grants of forty acres of land as an inducement to immigrants, and in 1860, Mr. Lambie came to Auckland by the ship “Northern Bride.” His first colonial experience was gained in the employment of the late Mr. John Wallace, of Flat Bush, Otahuhu, Auckland. About that time there was trouble with the Maoris, and Mr. Lambie was sworn in as a militiaman and drilled for some time, but saw no active service. In 1863, he came to Canterbury, and after some time spent in contract work, he took up some land at Boggy Creek, near where the township of Doyleston now stands, and devoted his attention to dairy farming. On the introduction of Sir Julius Vogel's public works policy, the branch railway line from Hornby to Southbridge was constructed, and as this line ran through Mr. Lambie's property at Doyleston, he cut up and sold about one hundred acres as an extension of the township. He also gave a free site for a public library. During his residence in the district Mr. Lambie served as a member of the North Rakaia Board of River Conservators. He was also a prime mover in establishing a public school at Leeston, and was chairman of the first public meeting ever held for that purpose. In 1873 Mr. Lambie's wife died, and shortly afterwards he sold his farm at Doyleston and bought 1500 acres of Government land on the South Rakaia plains. As one of the pioneer settlers in the new district, he was a prime mover in establishing a public school and post office. He also gave the new district its name of Kyle, in honour of Scotland's national poet, Burns, and also of his own birthplace. Mr. Lambie was an intimate friend and ardent admirer of the late Thomas Bracken, who was so greatly pleased at Mr. Lambie's action in naming a district in New Zealand after the birthplace of the Scottish poet, that the last book published by Mr. Bracken was dedicated to Mr. Lambie in the following terms:
Dedication to John Lambie, Esquire, Kyle, South Canterbury.
True lover of the deathless bard of Ayr,
A grateful tribute thou hast rendered here,
Unto the master of both smile and tear,
Whose lark-like notes make music everywhere;
Old Kyle's revered in every Scottish heart,
Our new Kyle here makes tender mem'ries start
To life anew, for it recalls the time
When that immortal “blast o' Janwar win”
Sang wild sweet songs to usher Robin in,
That he might cheer men's souls in every clime.
Oh, matchless minstrel of the manly lyre,
Not Scotia alone sends love to thee;
All nations that are warmed by Freedom's fire
Must venerate the Poet of the Free.
Councillor J. Lambie.
Mr. Lambie has now a compact farm of about 1700 acres at Kyle, principally devoted to sheep. He has long taken an active share in public business, and was one of the first to advocate the present water race system on the Canterbury Plains. Mr. Lambie is also a strong believer in a system of irrigation for the Plains. He has long been a member of the South Rakaia Road Board, and since the death of Mr. W. M. Lyttelton, he has been its chairman. Mr. Lambie is also chairman of Kyle district school committee; he also serves as local postmaster, and he has represented the South Rakaia riding in the Ashburton County Council for some years. In 1890 Mr. Lambie visited the Old Country, going home via San Francisco and New York, and returning via Suez and Australia. He has been twice married. His first wife was a daughter of the late Mr. James Crawford, a very old settler of Wairoa South, Auckland. She died in 1873, and three years later Mr. Lambie married a daughter of Mr. T. Hunt, of Christchurch. By his first marriage he has three children alive—two daughters and one son, who are all married; and by his second wife he has two sons and three daughters. Mr. Lambie's father is still alive. He came to the Colony in 1865, and bought 200 acres of Crown land at Lakeside, near Leeston. Mr. Lambie, senior, is now in his ninety-first year, but his wife, then in her eighty-sixth year died on the 19th of May, 1899, at the Lakeside homestead. Her grandfather, Alexander Brown, occupied a farm in Ayrshire, adjoining that of the poet Burns' father at Lochlea, and when the poet's father died, Mr. Brown was one of those who helped to carry him to the grave in Alloway Kirkyard, immortalised in “Tam o' Shanter.”
Councillor F. H. Millton is referred to in another article in connection with his property, “Drayton Grange,” in the Methven district.
Councillor William Morgan is a farmer in the Methven district. He is a Justice of the Peace for the colony.
Councillor Matthew Stitt, Member of the Ashburton County Council, was born in Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland, in 1842, and was educated there and brought up to farming in his native county. In 1862 he left for New Zealand by the “Chariot of Fame,” and on arriving at Lyttelton he went direct to Ashburton and was shepherding for about eighteen months on the land now included in the property of Mr. Cameron of Springfield. He afterwards moved to Winchmore, and was shepherding there for four years, and subsequently became the manager of the run, now known as Winchmore estate, of 4300 acres, the property of the late Mr. George Hart. Mr. Stitt is still manager and trustee of the property for the family. He also has a pleasant farm at Winchmore, named “Braemar,” where he resides. In 1896 he was elected a member of the Ashburton County Council. He has been judge for the Ashburton Racing Club for the past twenty-four years, and has been for the past twenty-one years a member of the Upper Ashburton Road Board. He is a member of the Ashburton Agricultural and Pastoral Society, and has filled the office of president; is a life member of the Caledonian Society, of which he was president for many years, and for about eight years he was master of the Ashburton Hunt Club.
Councillor John Studholme is referred to in another article in connection with the Coldstream estate at the Hinds.
Mr. Frederic Mainwaring, Clerk of the Ashburton County Council, arrived in New Zealand in 1864. For several years he was engaged on sheep stations, and was for six years Secretary to the North Canterbury Board of Education. Mr. Mainwaring received his present appointment in January, 1878. He is also Secretary of the Ashburton Hospital Board.
Mr. William Baxter, Engineer of the Ashburton County Council, is a native of Perthshire, Scotland. He was appointed to his present position in 1879. Since then he has superintended the construction of 1300 miles of water races, besides many bridges, plantations, and river protective works. In 1878 he was elected a member of the London Institute of Civil Engineers.
Ashburton County Water Races. The want of water was for a long time a great drawback to the Ashburton plains, but the County Council has now constructed over 3000 miles of water-races, and every paddock between the sea and the hills is supplied with water. Operations were begun in 1880, when 2000 barrels of cement were used to construct a dam at Pudding Hill. Two years later a second supply was taken out of the north branch of the Ashburton river, and a third supply was secured from the river near Winchmore. The works now include a small supply from below the Rakaia township, an intake from the Taylor Creek, and one from the Mount Somers woolshed creek. But for the whole settled area of the county, it is certain that much of the land could not be occupied profitably for agriculture of even purely pastoral purposes.
Mr. Charles Morrison, Water Ranger, was born at Keith, in Banffshire, Scotland, in 1851. In his earlier years he followed railway and other public works. He came out to Australia in 1878, in the ship “Durham,” and shortly afterwards arrived in New Zealand. For a year he resided in Otago, and then came to Canterbury, where he entered the service of the Ashburton County Council as inspector of bridges. He has been connected with the water-races from their inception and saw the first water turned on. Mr. Morrison is a member of the Ashburton school committee, and takes an active part in the management of local sports. He was married, in 1882, to Miss Rutherford, of Willowbank, and has three sons.
Mr. and Mrs C. Morrison and Family.
Ashburton, as a borough, was incorporated on the 30th of July, 1878. Before that time the town's affairs were managed by the Ashburton Road Board. The borough's boundaries enclose an area of about 680 acres. There are about 500 buildings in the borough, which contains property of an annual ratable value of £22,627. The burgess roll contains the names of 586 ratepayers. A loan of £7,500 has been raised to carry out works and improvements within the borough. At the census of April, 1901, Ashburton had a population of 2,322; 1,209 males, and 1,113 females. The members of the Borough Council for 1903 are: Mr. Henry Davis, Mayor, and Messrs J. Davison, Robert Clark, Charles Reid, J. W. Timmins, G. J. Wallace, David Thomas, Hugo Friedlander, John Wilson and A. Whitaker. Mr. Herbert H. Fooks is clerk, and Mr. Charles E. Fooks, engineer.
His Worship The Mayor, Mr. Henry Davis, was elected Mayor of Ashburton, in succession to Mr. W. H. Collins. Mr. Davis landed in Lyttelton in 1858, and is almost a native of New Zealand. He came in the ship “Mermaid,” but his earliest recollections are of Christchurch, where he was educated. Being of an independent disposition, he made an early start for himself, and was farming and stockdealing for some years. For eight years he was proprietor of the Plough Hotel at Rangiora, and sold it to acquire the “Royal” at Ashburton. During his residence in Ashburton he has earned the goodwill and respect of all classes. He belongs to the Thistle Lodge of Freemasons, and is a Past Master in the Orange Lodge; and while at Rangiora he was connected with the Druids. Mr. Davis has been twice married, and has one son and three daughters.
Mr. H. Davis.
Councillor Robert Clark is the son of the late Robert McGavin Clark, who was well known in commercial circles in the province of Auckland. He was born in Nelson in 1863. Mr. Clark was educated by self-effort, and was studying for the Bar, but, owing to family misfortunes, turned his attention to other callings. He has travelled a good deal, and turned his hand to many trades, but finally selected that of coach painting. Mr. Clark arrived in Ashburton in the year 1882, and since then has held office as a Freemason, a Druid, a member of the Fire Brigade, Salvage Corps, of cycling and athletic clubs, and sports associations. He has been elected several times to the Ashburton Borough Council.
Councillor John Davison, who is a member of the Ashburton Borough Council, is a native of Lancashire, England. He arrived in New Zealand in 1870, and shortly afterwards settled in Ashburton. In 1866 he was appointed clerk to the Upper Ashburton Road Board. He is also Deputy Assignee for the Ashburton district, and is agent for the National Mutual Life Assurance Society. Mr. Davison was elected to the Borough Council in 1896.
Councillor Hugo Friedlander, who has also served as Mayor of the borough, has been long and intimately connected with the trade and the public affairs of the town and country of Ashburton. He is at present also a member of the Ashburton County Council.
Councillor Charles Reid was first elected a Member of the Ashburton Borough Council in 1888, and, except for one term, has held office continuously since that date. He was mayor for 1898–1899.
Councillor Joseph W. Timmins, who was elected to the Ashburton Borough Council in 1890, was born at Market Drayton, England, and brought up and educated in Yorkshire. He served an apprenticeship to the drapery trade at Ludlow, and afterwards gained experience in various towns in England. In 1885 he came to Lyttelton. He was with Messrs J. Ballantyne and Co., and Messrs H. E. May and Co., and on his arrival at Ashburton, in 1891, he joined the staff of Messrs Mitchell and Turner. On the death of Mr. Mitchell in 1896, he became a partner in the firm.
Councillor David Thomas carries on business as a wool and grain broker. He is a Justice of the Peace for the colony.
Councillor G. J. Wallace is manager at Ashburton for the well known Canterbury firm of P. and D. Duncan.
Councillor Albert Whitaker was returned to the Council at the last borough elections.
Councillor John Wilson, who is a painter by trade, was returned to the Council at the last elections.
Mr. Herbert H. Fooks, Clerk of the Ashburton Borough Council, was born in Christchurch, educated at the Ashburton High School, and graduated at Canterbury College. He was for twelve months in a solicitor's office, and was appointed assistant town clerk for Ashburton in 1889, and promoted to his present position in 1901. He is a son of Mr. Charles E. Fooks, the borough engineer.
Mr. Charles E. Fooks, Engineer for the Ashburton Borough Council, was born at Weymouth, Dorsetshire, England; was educated at Salisbury and Edmonton, near London, and articled to a London architect and surveyor. He married at the age of twenty-one, and arrived at Lyttelton by the ship “Steadfast” in 1851. He was in the survey office of the Canterbury Association for some time, after which he took up a farm in the Avon district. Mr. Fooks then returned to his profession, which he followed at Ashburton and in other districts of Canterbury, until he received his appointment as engineer for the Borough Council.
The Ashburton High School gained its majority in 1902. It stands in spacious grounds in the north-east corner of the town. The buildings are old fashioned, but the Board of Governors do all they can to make them comfortable for the seventy-five scholars now (1903) in attendance. For many years the boys and girls were separated, but a few years ago, the Board decided, chiefly for economical reasons, that they should be taught together. The present head-master is Mr. J. S. Tennant, M.A., B.Sc., and he is assisted by Miss C. Macgregor, M.A., and Mr. C. F. Salmond, M.A.—all graduates of the University of New Zealand. Mr. Tennant came from Dunedin, where he was a lecturer in the Technical School, and sometime Lecturer in Botany at the University of Otago, and Miss Macgregor is from the Nelson Girls' College, Mr. Salmond gained his experience in South Canterbury. He is at present also Lecturer on Mental Science in Canterbury College.
Ashburton Borough Schools, These consist of the Main School and the Infant School. The buildings are of wood, and are built on separate grounds in a central part of the town. The Main School has accommodation for about 400 pupils, and the staff consists of two male and two female assistants and one pupil-teacher, exclusive of the headmaster, Mr. C. D. Hardie, B.A. Mr. Hardie took charge of the Borough Schools on the 1st of April, 1897. He was previously headmaster of Papanui school, and was for ten years First Assistant in the Normal School, Christchurch. The last roll number was 398, and the average attendance, 336. The Infant Department is in charge of the Headmistress, Mrs E. Willis, with two pupil-teachers, and can accommodate 150 pupils. The opening of a side school at Allenton suburb page 820 about three years ago, reduced the attendance at the Borough Schools a good deal. Since 1892 the Borough School pupils have gained fifty-one High School scholarships, seven North Canterbury Board scholarships, five exhibitions, one art exhibition medal for freehand drawing, and one athletic scholarship. This is a scholarship awarded by the High School Board for the winner of the greatest number of points in the annual inter-school athletic competitions. The school possesses an excellent library for the use of the pupils, an Honour Board, or permanent record of the successes of the pupils, and a recently formed cadet corps.
Convent Of The Sacred Heart, Ashburton. This is an imposing structure; in fact, the most noticeable building on the west side of the town. The Convent was established in 1884, when it was erected a short distance outside the borough boundaries, but the buildings were removed to their present site in 1894, and were enlarged considerably. There is accommodation for twenty boarders, and at present twelve are in community. The Sisters conduct a girls' school and a boys' school in connection with the Convent. Until quite recently the boys were taught in a separate building. But this is now used as a place of meeting for societies in connection with the church. It was used as the old church before the present one was erected.
St. Stephen's Church, Ashburton, is substantially built, and has thick concrete walls with stone pillars and buttresses, and slate roofing. The body of the church has cost about £4,000 to erect, and is now complete. The chancel, however, has yet to be built, and, with the belfry over the gate, will probably cost a further £1,500. It should then be one of the most handsome and substantial parish churches in New Zealand, and should last for generations to come. The seating accommodation at present is ample for 450 people. There is an excellent surpliced choir, and Mr. H. A. Gates has been choirmaster for many years. Immediately adjoining the section on which the church is erected, stands a large church schoolroom and meeting room, which is also on church freehold property, while on the east town belt a glebe consisting of ten acres, with a vicarage erected thereon, is also owned by the church.
The Rev. Edwin White House is the present vicar. He had previously been stationed at Kumara, Southbridge, and Patea, and also spent many years prior to his coming to New Zealand in doing good church work in India and in England.
The Presbyterian Church, Ashburton, is a wooden building, and was erected in 1876. The Rev. H. B. Burnett was the first minister, the Rev. A. M. Beattie, the second, and the Rev. G. B. Inglis, the third and present minister. The choir is a very strong one. There is a flourishing literary and debating society in connection with the church. The church accommodates 250 persons, and the managers have resolved to erect a new and larger building. The surrounding districts are under the care of a Home Missionary.
The Rev. G. B. Inglis, Minister of the Presbyterian Church, Ashburton, was ordained in 1880 at Warepa, in the Presbytery of Clutha, and was transferred to Ashburton in October, 1893. He has had opportunities of travel, and has visited the United States of America, India, Australia, and more recently the New Hebrides. Mr. Inglis takes a leading part in educational and missionary matters.
The Roman Catholic Church, Ashburton, was built in 1882, and is in the style of the early English Gothic. It has seating accommodation for 350. There is a good choir connected with the church. For many years the Catholic Literary Society was the only one of its kind in the town. It has been very well managed from the first, and holds a meeting every week. The Very Rev. Dean James Joseph O'Donnell has been in charge of the district since November, 1892, and is assisted by a curate.
Wesleyan Church, Ashburton. The first Wesleyan church erected in Ashburton was built in Cameron Street, in 1878, and the Rev. W. B. Martin was the first minister. In 1892 the building was removed to its present site opposite Baring Square East. It has seating accommodation for about 300 persons, and is a comfortable and cheerful building, having been enlarged and improved since its removal. At the back there is a schoolroom, which will hold about 200 pupils. It is also used for meetings. An infant school in brick adjoins, and is capable of accommodating 100 children; and there are two vestry rooms. The choir is an excellent one, and is under the charge of Mr. E. Undrill. The parsonage is a good sized building, situated on half an acre in Cameron Street.
The Rev. Alfred Peters, Minister at Ashburton, formerly belonged to the United Methodist Free Church, in which he held the office of district chairman, and was also connexional secretary for two years and treasurer for five years. After the union of the Wesleyan and Methodist churches he was in charge of the Ponsonby circuit, Auckland, until March, 1899, when he was transferred to Rangiora, and succeeded at Ponsonby by the Rev. W. Ready. Mr. Peters was born at Probus, Truro, Cornwall, England, in 1851, and educated at Probus Grammar School. He arrived in Nelson in 1876, and in 1877 was ordained to the ministry of the United Methodist Church, for which he officiated successively at Reefton, Christchurch, Oxford, Rangiora, Wellington, and Auckland. Mr. Peters was married to Miss Watson, youngest daughter of the late William Morgan Watson, of Fendalton, Christchurch. Whilst originally residing in Rangiora, Mr. Peters was a member of the school committee and of the Oxford licensing committee. He was appointed a deputation to wait upon all the United Free Methodist Churches, throughout New Zealand, in connection with the Loan on Buildings Fund scheme, and was very successful in his work in that respect. Mr. Peters has always taken an active part in the cause of education and temperance.
The Primitive Methodist Church, Ashburton, is in Wills Street, not far from the railway station. It will seat about 260 persons, but is hardly large enough for the congregation. The church has been very fortunate in its pastors. The Rev. R. Rains, the present minister, came from Waimate in 1898. The pastorate includes a good deal of the country district. There is a strong staff of local preachers attached to the church, and the choir is a very efficient one.
The Baptist Church, Ashburton, has seats for about 250 persons. It stands in the north-eastern part of the town, and was built some years ago when he Rev. A. Ager was pastor, and he designed and superintended its erection. Shortly afterwards Mr. Ager resigned, and was succeeded by the Rev. W. Lamb, who afterwards accepted a call from a charge in the North Island. His successor, the Rev. W. L. Salter, arrived in Ashburton in May, 1903.
The Ashburton Club And Mutual School Of Art was established in 1885. At the time of its inauguration it had few members, but in the eighteen years of its existence it has grown to be one of the finest and most complete institutions of its kind in New Zealand. Its popularity is shown by the fact that at the present time it has 620 members, amongst whom there are many business men and farmers. The premises are situated well back from the street, and have an attractive entrance. They include an office for the manager, a ladies' room, commercial room a room for ping pong, and a card hall, with room for eighty-four players engaged in progressive euchre. The club also possesses a bagatelle room, a skittle alley, and a billiard room; reading rooms, writing rooms, an excellent library, and a room for the meetings of the committee of management, and other business connected with the institution.
Mr. Edward J. Righton, Manager of the Ashburton Club and Mutual School of Art, was born in Canterbury, and educated at the Boys' High School, Christchurch. He was article to a solicitor and was with Mr. T. G. Russell for three years, after which he went to the North Island. On returning to Christchurch he began business as a commission page 821 agent, and was from time to time secretary to committees entrusted with the management of important public functions, such as the Canterbury Jubilee and Memorial, the reception of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York, the despatch of Contingents for service in South Africa. He has also been secretary for the Motett society, and the Canterbury Central League of New Zealand Wheelmen. Mr. Righton received his present appointment in 1901. As a Druid he is a member of the Court Star of Ashburton, and as a Freemason, of Lodge Ashburton, No. 1811, E.C. He is married, and has two children.
Mr. E. J. Righton.
Lodge Ashburton, No. 1811, E.C., is a combination of two English Lodges, the Somerset, No. 1811, and St. John's, No. 1858. The former lodge was established in Ashburton in 1877, and Mr. R. W. Shearman, the first Master, gave the site of the present Masonic Hall. Lodge St. John's, of which the Rev. W. A. Paige was the first Master, was opened two years later. Mr. W. H. Gundry, the first Senior Warden, of this Lodge, became Master in the following year. On the amalgamation of the two lodges, in 1891, Mr. J. M. Cambridge was installed Worshipful Master. Meetings are at present held at the Masonic Hall, Tancred Street, but these premises have been found unsuitable, and a site for a new hall has been bought. The installation takes place in June, and ordinary meetings are held on the second Thursday in each month. The officers of the Lodge are: Messrs E. Nordon, W.M.; T. Stone, I.P.M.; J. Pipe, S.W.; T. W. Clayton, J.W.; J. W. Timmins, S.D.; J. V. de Beer, J.D.; T. M. Jones, P.M., Secretary; and J. W. Hardley, P.M. Treasurer.
Mr. Ernest Nordon, Worshipful Master of Lodge Ashburton, was installed in his present office in June, 1902, by Mr. R. D. Thomas, Right Worshipful District Grand Master of Canterbury. He was initiated in Lodge Ponsonby, No. 708 S.C., Auckland, in which he attained the position of Senior Warden, and was on the point of being elected Master, when he removed to Canterbury. Prior to his departure the members of the Lodge presented him with an illuminated address. On his arrival in Canterbury Mr. Nordon affiliated with Lodge Ashburton and Lodge Canterbury, No. 1048, E.C. He was born in London, in 1869, and left England as a youth. After three years spent in America, and twelve months in Australia, he came to New Zealand, and arrived in Auckland in 1890. There he resided for eleven years, and was engaged in business as a Press agent, an avocation which he has since followed in Ashburton and Christchurch. As a member of the Order of Foresters, in Auckland, he rose to the position of District Sub-Chief Ranger. His departure precluded him from accepting the office of District Chief Ranger, but his fellow Foresters presented him with a jewel denoting his office. For several years Mr. Nordon was secretary of the Auckland Cycling Club, and he is now on the Council of the League of New Zealand Wheelmen, on which he represents North Canterbury. He also sits on the Council of the Amateur Swimming Association, on which he represents Westland; he is Secretary of the New Zealand Hockey Association, and is also an active member of the New Zealand Amateur Boxing Association.
Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. E. Nordon.
McLean, Mrs Donald, Mus. Bac., Ashburton and Christchurch. Mrs McLean, who, prior to her marriage with Mr. Donald McLean, of “Kinraid,” near Tinwald, was Miss Alice Rowley, is a native of Christchurch and the eldest daughter of Mr. Joseph Rowley of the Land Office, Christchurch, being the only child of his first wife. She was educated at the Girls' High School, Christchurch, and was the youngest child ever admitted to that institution, being, at the time of her entrance, only seven years of age. From her infancy she showed great musical ability, both as a pianiste and a composer. At the close of her course at the Girls High School, she matriculated and attended lectures at the University with a view to obtaining the degree of Bachelor of Music. In the meantime, the late Mr. G. F. Tendall had her musical education in hand, and under his able guidance she studied the science of music, and graduated in 1901, the first lady student in New Zealand to obtain the degree. Her examiners were Sir Frederick Bridge and Sir Alexander Mackenzie, and her exercise for the degree was a sacred cantata “Prayer and Praise.” Mrs McLean is a prolific composer, of both sacred and secular music, but song-writing is her specialty, and she is well-known in Canterbury as a brilliant pianiste.
Mr. H. A. Gates.
Owen, Llewellyn, Professor of Music, Burnett Street, Ashburton. Mr. Owen was born in London in 1871, and came to New Zealand with his brother by the “Euterpe” in 1879; he had missed his passage by the “Knowsley Hall,” which was never again heard of. He was educated at the East Christchurch school, and made such rapid progress that his success gained him a pupil teachership at fourteen; at eighteen he matriculated, and at the age of nineteen he was headmaster of a school for a short period. He moved to Ashburton, in 1881, and obtained a mastership at the borough school, where he gave his spare time to the direction of the children's musical exercises with such remarkable results that he resigned his position at the school and devoted himself wholly to the study of music. In this his progress was so great that he soon commenced a practice, which has grown into one of the largest in New Zealand. Mr. Owen has contributed considerably to the lists of dance music, and his barn dance, “The Royal Cambrians,” and the “Euterpe Waltz,” have been published by Messrs Robert Cocks and Co., of London. His “Euterpe Waltz,” which is now famous, was played twice before the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York. Mr. Owen is conductor of the Ashburton Musical Union, the orchestra of which numbers thirty performers. He also belongs to the Canterbury Society of Musicians, and is the local conductor of the Liederkranz, and of the Estudiantina Band, with its twelve performers. Mr. Owen has a singing class of about sixty members. He has been very successful in training pupils for the London College examinations, and has not had a failure. Mr. Owen is a Freemason and a member of the Kilwinning Royal Arch Chapter.
Wright, Joseph, Musicseller, Ashburton, Mr. Wright is the eldest son of Mr. Gilbert Wright, of Mosgiel, and was born in Dunedin in 1875. He was educated at the Mosgiel public school, after leaving which he was engaged with his father in the bootmaking business, then went to Invercargill in 1890 and was employed in the Kingsland boot factory, afterwards returning to Canterbury and working for Messrs Logie and Son of Christchurch. He became manager of Mr. Thurlow's business at Kaiapoi, and subsequently opened one of his own at Henley, Otago. He sold his business and returned to Kaiapoi, whence to moved to Ashburton. Mr. Wright was a member of the Invercargill Band when it was successful at the band contest of 1893. He was also cornet-player in the Christchurch Garrison Band. Mr. Wright was married, in 1896, to a daughter of Mr. William Wright, of Kaiapoi.
Mr. J. Wright.
Crisp, Edward George, Barrister and Solicitor, Tancred Street, Ashburton. Mr Crisp was born in Hobart, Tasmania, in 1852, and educated at the Hobart High School. He served his articles in his father's office, Crisp and McGill, Hobart, and was admitted to and bar in Hobart in 1876. Mr. Crisp then came over to New Zealand. He was twelve months with Messrs Haggitt Bros. and Brent, solicitors, Dunedin. In 1877 he came to Ashburton, and had the distinction of being the first solicitor to practise in the town, in which he has established a prosperous business. page 823 Mr. Crisp is a Past Master of the St. John's (now Somerset) Lodge of Freemasons, and acts as Installing Master. He was for two years borough solicitor, and has been chairman of the Ashburton Racing Club. Mr. Crisp was married in Hobart to Miss Jessie Totham, daughter of the late Samuel Totham, and has a family of two sons.
Trevor, James Ebenezer, M.R.C.S., L.S.A. (Eng.), Corner of Tancred and Cass Streets, Ashburton. Dr. Trevor is a native of Plymouth, England, and was educated at St. Mary's Hospital, London, where he gained his diploma. Shortly afterwards he went to the West Indies, where he spent eighteen months as Medical Officer in the Royal Mail Service. On returning to England he was engaged in private practice near London till 1868, when he sailed for New Zealand. Dr. Trevor practised his profession at Kaiapoi till 1872, when he removed to Ashburton. During his long residence in the district Dr. Trevor has been intimately associated with many phases of active life, in addition to holding numerous public appointments. He has been surgeon-superintendent of the Ashburton Hospital since the opening of that institution, and was for many years coroner for the borough.
Dodds, George Fawcit, Surgeon Dentist, Cass Street, Ashburton. Mr. Dodds was born in Kelso, Scotland, in 1869, and was partly educated by private tutors. In 1881 he sailed for New Zealand, and completed his education at the public schools at Port Chalmers. On leaving school he was apprenticed to Mr. Chatfield, surgeon dentist, of Auckland. Mr. Dodds gained his diploma as a qualified dentist, at Dunedin, in 1890, and in the following year, commenced business on his own account in Ashburton. His premises are neatly arranged, well fitted up, and contain all the appliances of a modern dental surgery. He employs one qualified assistant. Mr. Dodds was married, in 1893, to Miss Lye, daughter of Mr. Lye, of Auckland, and has three sons and one daughter.
Gresham, Herbert, Dentist, Burnett Street, Ashburton. Mr. Gresham was born in Dunedin, and educated there at the High street School. He was taught his profession by his brother, Mr. E. G. Gresham, of Dunedin, and passed his final examination and was registered in 1897. Mr. Gresham was for some time manager of a dental business at Gore. He then became assistant to Mr. J. Gray, dentist, at Hawera, and afterwards first assistant to Mr. F. W. Gresham, dentist, Invercargill. Having thus gained experience, he established himself in business in Burnett Street. Ashburton, where he has gained a good reputation and an increasing connection.
Mr. H. Gresham.
The Bank Of Australasia opened its Ashburton branch in October, 1881, and it is now one of its best country branch businesses. The building is of wood, one storey in height, and stands at the corner of Tancred and West Streets, facing the Union Bank of Australia.
Mr. Percy Harper Cox, Manager of the Bank of Australasia at Ashburton, is a grandson of Bishop Harper, sometime Primate of New Zealand, and a son of Mr. C. P. Cox, formerly of Mount Somers station, and now (1903) a resident of Christchurch. Mr. P. H. Cox was born at Mount Somers, and educated at Christ's College, Christchurch. He joined the staff of the Bank of Australasia in Christchurch; and was in the bank's service at Invercargill for six years, and in the North Island for eighteen months, when he received his present appointment, which he has [gap — reason: illegible] for the past thirteen years. Mr. Cox takes an active interest in atheletics and sport generally; is a president of several athletic clubs, and took an active part in forming the Ashburton Sports Association, of which he has been chairman since its formation. He has been well known as a member of interprovincial football teams, and has won the Half Mile Amateur Running Championship.
Mr. P. H. Cox.
Union Bank Of Australia (Geoffry Selwyn Mathias, manager), Ashburton.
Mr. Geoffry Selwyn Mathias, Manager, is a son of the late Venerable Archdeacon Mathias, and was born in Christchurch in 1856, and educated at Christ's College. In 1873, he entered the service of the Union Bank in Christchurch, where he remained for three years. He was successively transferred to Lyttelton, Auckland, and Timaru; was appointed to the management of the Waimate branch in 1891, and remained at Waimate till the end of November, 1902, when he entered on the management of the branch at Ashburton. Mr. Mathias takes an active and prominent part in the social welfare of his district. He was a member of the Waimate school committee, a steward of the Waimate Racing Club, president of the Star Cycling Club, member of the committee of the Waimate Agricultural and Pastoral Association, and president of the Waimate Caledonian Society. He has always taken a keen interest in athletic matters, and in his younger days he won a large number of cups and trophies. While at college he established a record for the mile for boys under sixteen. This record—5 minutes 14 seconds—has never since been broken. As a footballer, he represented Canterbury in several interprovincial matches Mr. Mathias married a daughter of Mr. H. Hawkins, of Lyttelton.
Mr. G. S. Mathias.
Mr. Robert Stephenson McFarland was for three years manager of the page 824 Ashburton branch of the Bank of New South Wales. He entered the bank's service at Auckland as a junior in 1875, and in 1877 was transferred to the Thames, where he was promoted to take charge in the following year at the early age of nineteen. In 1883 he was transferred to Blenheim, where he opened the bank's branch. Next year he was transferred to Bulls as manager. In 1889 he was at Hawera as manager of the branch, and opened a sub-agency at Eltham. He was transferred to Wanganui in 1895, and in 1896 was appointed to the managership of the Ashburton branch. The bank's business having increased in volume during his term of office, it was found necessary to secure increased accommodation, and at Mr. McFarland's request, the late inspector, Mr. Rhind, consented to the erection of the present pile of handsome buildings in Burnett Street, whither the bank transferred its business on the 8th of December, 1899. Mr. McFarland married a daughter of the late Dr. R. F. Corbett, sometime senior surgeon to the Glasgow Royal Infirmary. He died at Christchurch on the 22nd of April, 1899.
The late Mr. R. S. McFarland.
Bell, John Charles, Financial and Insurance Agent; Agent for the Royal Exchange, Burnett Street, Ashburton.—Mr. Bell is also clerk to the Coldstream Road Board, and to the Hampstead Town Board. He was born at Clifton, Gloucestershire, England, in 1842, and educated at the Bishop's College, Clifton. He came to New Zealand in 1864, by the ship “Indian Empire,” Captain Black, and landed at Lyttelton. Mr. Bell bought a half interest in a cattle run on the Rangitata, and resided there for seven years in taking cattle over to the West Coast. After that he removed to Ashburton, where he was with Mr. Fooks, surveyor, and helped to complete the first valuation roll of the district. He then went on a survey party all over the county. Since that time he has held several public positions as clerk to the Mount Somers Road Board and the Rangitata Road Board. He has been extensively employed by local bodies, and was deputy official assignee for some year in Ashburton. Mr. Bell was married, in 1875, to a daughter of Mr. Robert Taylor, of St. Albans, Christchurch, and has four daughters.
Malcolmson, James William, Commission Agent, Ashburton. Mr. Malcolmson was appointed Manager of the Fairfield Freezing Works when they were started at Fairton. Previously he had been in the shipping and grain trade for twenty years, during which he had been connected with the National Mortgage Company Ltd., as agents for Shaw, Savill and Co., and in the Grain Agency with the late Mr. Peter Cunningham. Mr. Malcolmson was born in Lyttelton in 1864, and is a son of Captain Malcolmson, an old colonist. He was one of the promoters of the Lyttelton N Battery, and the Lyttelton Navals, and one of the first members of each of these corps. In social, athletic, and sporting matters Mr. Malcolmson has always taken a very prominent part. For five years he was secretary of the Lyttelton regattas, and was secretary and treasurer of the Lyttelton Rowing Club. As commodore of the New Brighton Sailing Club he became very popular with oarsmen. He was also a director of the Canterbury Caledonian Society. Since settling at Ashburton, Mr. Malcolmson's business ability and cheerful disposition have made him a general favourite amongst the farmers. Mr. Malcolmson is married to a daughter of Mr. Aaron Ayers, of Christchurch, and has a family of three.
Stonyer, William, Auctioneer and General Agent, Ashburton. Mr. Stonyer was born at Henley, Staffordshire, England. He came to New Zealand in 1857, with his father, a well-known miller in Canterbury, who built the “Ravenswood” mill at Woodend, near Kaiapoi, and afterwards purchased the Kaiapoi flour mills, and, later on, the Pleasant Point flour mill, and about 800 acres of land near Timaru. Mr Stonyer, senior, died at Valley Field Farm, Otipua, shortly after giving up business and active life, in 1890. Mr. William Stonyer was educated at Kaiapoi, at the old English Church school. He was in business for some years with his father, after whose death he was engaged as travelling representative for the Walter A. Wood Machinery Company. Later on he represented the New Zealand Loan and Mercantile Company, and in 1900 he established himself in business at Ashburton, in an office in the Ashburton Arcade. Owing to the rapid extension of his business he purchased three-quarters of an acre of land in Tancred Street, on which he has erected commodious offices, a large auction mart known as “Tattersall's,” implement showrooms, workshops and grain stores. Mr. Stonyer's long experience in connection with agriculture and machinery has been of great advantage to him in selecting and acquiring some splendid agencies, such as those of Messrs Conway Matson and Sons, Wilson's Oil and Gas Engines, Electric Lighting Plant, McCormick Turbines, Osborne Colombia Machine Company, Colombia harvester and binders, McSherry drills, rollers, ploughs, harrows, and a large number of farm implements. Wool packs, twines, oils, and other farmers' requirements are always in stock. Mr Stonyer is also agent for English and American bicycles, and for the United Fire and Marine Insurance Company, and does a large business as a land agent, chiefly in connection with farm lands. He is also a grain and produce merchant, and has had about twenty-five years' experience in the flour and grain business. Considering the short time it has been in existence Mr. Stonyer's business has made rapid strides in all departments.
Wrigglesworth and Binns, photo.
Mr. W. Stonyer.
Bryant, William, Baker and Confectioner, Wills Street, Ashburton. Mr Bryant was born and educated in Christchurch, Canterbury. He was employed by Mr. Robertson, baker, of Victoria Street, Mr. Faville, and Mr. T. Plummeridge, all well known Christchurch bakers. In 1885 he went to Ashburton, and after working at his trade there for twelve months, he established himself in business in Havelock Street. He has been obliged to enlarge his premises to enable him to cope with his increasing business. Mr. Bryant has two carts continually employed, and has also a good counter trade. As a Forester Mr. Bryant has been an active and energetic member of the Ashburton Court. He became a Freemason in 1901, when he was initiated in Lodge Ashburton, E.C. Mr. Bryant is married, and has one son and six daughters.
The Ashburton Brewery, Cameron Street, Ashburton. Telephone 77; P.O. Box 36. The original site of half an acre, on which this brewery was established in 1878, has since been added to, and an allotment of four acres, facing Cameron Street, is now reserved for its use. The main building is of [gap — reason: illegible]on, and stands on a concrete foundation. page 825 The malt house, which is under the same roof, is bricked inside. There is plant capable of turning out twelve hogsheads; but as a rule a brewing is limited to ten. Mr. M. C. O. Digby, the proprietor, was born in Essex, England, in 1852, and arrived in New Zealand in 1863.
Aerated Water And Cordial Factory (Alfred Bray, Proprietor), Cameron Street, Ashburton. This businesswas established by Mr. H. F. Brittan, who carried it on for a number of years. Since then it has been owned in succession by Mr. Taylor Mr. C. M. Brooke, and Mr. W. H. Dardis; and in 1900 passed into the hands of the present proprietor, Mr. Bray, who has had the factory enlarged and improved, and a new plant of the latest machinery erected. The factory has a large output of excellent beverages, comprising all kinds of aerated waters, cordials, hop beer, etc.
Mr. Alfred Bray was born in Cornwall, England, and arrived in New Zealand with his parents in 1876. He was educated at Southbridge, and, after following various occupations for several years, he bought his present business. Mr. Bray is a member of the Ashburton Court of Foresters, and also of the Ashburton Mounted Rifles.
Mr. A. Bray.
Andrews, George William, Builder, Ashburton. Mr. Andrews was born in 1849 at Nelson, where his father, Mr. Thomas Andrews, arrived in 1842. He was educated at the Spring Grove and Motueka public schools, Nelson, and subsequently trained as a bricklayer and builder. Mr. Andrews settled at Ashburton in 1875. He was elected to the Ashburton Borough Council in August, 1900, and has been associated with public life in various capacities for upwards of twenty-five years. For seventeen years he has been a member of the Hampstead Town Board, of which he has been chairman for several terms. He was for a number of years a member of the Ashburton school committee, and was elected a member of the committee of the Hampstead school, when that school was first opened. Mr. Andrews has been associated with the Wesleyan body in Ashburton since the initiation of the Ashburton circuit, of which he was the first circuit steward and one of the first trustees. He has also been a Wesleyan Sunday School teacher for thirty-two years, and has taken a prominent part in promoting the Prohibition movement. He has been an active cricketer for about forty-five years. In 1877 he was married to Miss M. Williams, of Christchurch, and has had two sons and one daughter. One son was killed by a gun accident a few years ago.
Standish and Preece, photo.
Mr. G. W. Andrews.
Baker Bros. (Charles Were Baker, proprietor), Builders and Undertakers, Corner of Wakanui Road and Cass Street, Ashburton. This business was established in 1876, by Messrs John W. Baker, Charles W. Baker, and Benjamin Baker. In 1884 it was taken over by Mr. Charles Were Baker, and has since then been carried on by him under the style of Baker Bros. The undertaking branch of the business has long held a leading position in the county of Ashburton, the plant being thoroughly modern in every particular. As a builder Mr. Baker has erected the Farmers' Co-operative Association's building, Cookson's Stables, Butler's Family Hotel, the church and parsonage at Mount Somers, and other buildings. He acts also as an agent for monumental masonry.
Mr. Charles Were Baker, the Proprietor, is a native of Devonshire, England, where he was educated and taught his trade. He arrived at Lyttelton by the ship “Zealandia,” on the 9th of December, 1871. After being engaged by Mr. D. Reese as a builder for eight years in Christchurch, he removed to Ashburton and joined his brothers in the business he now carries on. Mr. Baker became a member of Lodge Somerset, English Constitution, in 1884, and is now one of its Past Masters. As an Oddfellow he is an old member of the Manchester Unity, and was transferred to Ashburton from Christchurch, where he joined the Order in 1876. Mr. Baker is an honorary member of the Lodge of Druids and the Court of Foresters at Ashburton.
Mr. C. W. Baker.
Mr. P. Gourdie.
Smith And Son (Frederick Albert Smith and George M. Smith), Builders and Contractors, Cameron Street East, Ashburton. This business was established in 1884 by Mr. James Smith, father of the present members of the firm. The firm has built many important buildings in Ashburton, including the Ashburton Arcade for Mr. Bullock, Captain Coleman's residence, the municipal offices, and many private residences throughout the district. Designs are drawn, and specifications made out by Mr. F. A. Smith. The workshop is in Wills Street, where men are employed on the joinery for the buildings in progress.
Mr. F. A. Smith, Senior Partner of the firm, was born in England, and came to New Zealand with his father. He was educated in Ashburton, where he also learned his trade.
Mr. George M. Smith, Junior Partner, was born in Canterbury, where he was educated and learned his trade.
Vesty, Herbert Amos, Builder and Contractor, Moore Street, Ashburton. Mr. Vesty was born in Leicester, and brought up in the Midlands of England. He came to New Zealand with his stepfather in the ship “Lurline” in 1883, and settled at Ashburton, where he was engaged in the building trade until he established himself in business in 1890 as a builder and contractor. Since that time he has erected a large number of shops, dwellinghouses, and other buildings in and around Ashburton. Much of his work is done by private contract. Mr. Vesty draws the plans, submits specifications, and carries on the work to completion. In the large workshop in Moore Street, near West Street, several men are continually employed, chiefly on joinery work. Mr. Vesty was initiated as a Freemason at Ashburton, in 1888, and is a Past Master of Lodge Ashburton, No. 1811, E.C.
Mr. H. A. Vesty.
Higgs, John L., Painter, Signwriter, Decorator, Glazier, and Picture Framer, Tancred Street, Ashburton. Mr. Higgs is a native of Timaru, where he was educated, and learned his trade under Mr. Craigie, of that town. After serving a five years' apprenticeship he remained with Mr. Craigie for eighteen months. He came to Ashburton in 1888, and went into partnership with Mr. Dorn, trading as Dorn and Higgs. This business was carried on for several years, and, on the partnership being dissolved, Mr. Higgs went back to Timaru, but returned to Ashburton in 1895, and after working at his trade for some time, established his present business, and now has a large connection. His stock of wall papers, colours, plain and fancy glass, is most complete, and comprises many special lines. He also has a very fine stock of artists' materials. Mr. Higgs is an old member of the Court of Foresters, and a Past Chief Ranger. He is also a member of the Ashburton Society of Good Templars. Mr. Higgs is married, and has three daughters.
Mr. J. L. Higgs.
Mr. W. Sparrow's Premises.
Mr. W. Sparrow.
Percy, Henry Clifford, Hairdresser and Tobacconist, Ashburton. Agent for the “Lyttelton Times.” Established 1894. This is the principal business of its kind in Ashburton, and the shop is replete with stock of every description in the trade. Cigarettes are manufactured on the premises, and Mr. Percy's brand is “Goldleaf.” The saloon is well lighted and furnished, and is under the supervision of Mr. F. Price. Mr. Percy was born at Lyttelton in 1866, his father, Mr. John Percy, having come to New Zealand by the “Mersey” about four years previously. He was educated at the Normal school, Christchurch. Mr. Percy went into a wholesale house in the fancy goods and tobacconist line, and after fifteen years' experience, he started in business on his own account in Ashburton in 1894. He is secretary and treasurer of the Ashburton Cricket Club.
Central Hotel (William H. Dardis, proprietor), Ashburton. This large and commodious hotel is situated within two minutes' walk of the railway station and post office, and fronts the Wakanui road. The house contains twenty bedrooms (exclusive of what are used by the family), a dining-room, five sitting-rooms, a commercial room, card rooms, and a billiard-room fitted up with one of Alcock's tables. Under the able management of Mr. Dardis, the “Central” has become a popular resort. A first-class table is kept, and the household arrangements are under the supervision of Miss Dardis. On account of its convenient situation and excellent appointments, the house is specially adapted for theatrical companies, tourists, and the travelling public, and guests receive every attention and consideration at the hands of the page 828 proprietor. The best wines are kept in stock, and Ward's special beer is on draught. There is good stabling for the horses of country visitors. [No License was carried at Ashburton at the general election of November, 1902, and this article was written and printed prior to that date.]
Mr. William H. Dardis, Proprietor, took over the license of the Central Hotel in 1899. He was born in Christchurch in 1872, and served an apprenticeship as a compositor with Mr. H. J. Weeks, Christchurch. Mr. Dardis afterwards followed his trade for several years in the North Island. He has always taken an active interest in sporting and athletic matters, and his geniality makes him generally popular. Mr. Dardis owned the Ashburton Ærated Water and Cordial Factory for two years, and the business was largely increased under his management. He sold the factory on taking possession of the Central Hotel.
Wrigglesworth and Binns, photo.
Mr. W. H. Dardis.
Royal Hotel (Albert Whitaker, proprietor), Ashburton. Mr. Whitaker is a native of Brimingham, England, and came to New Zealand in 1884. He was shortly afterwards engaged by Mr. T. G. Russell, solicitor, Christchurch, and became manager of the canvassing and collecting department of the Mercantile and Bankruptcy Gazette, and Mr. Russell's managing clerk. Mr. Whitaker left that position to become manager of the Ashburton Club. After his father-in-law, Mr Henry Davis, retired from the ownership of the Royal Hotel in 1901, Mr. Whitaker took over the license. The “Royal” is one of those comfortable houses in which the traveller is apt to recall Shenstone's lines:
Whoe'er has travelled life's dull round,
Where'er his stages may have been,
May sigh to think he still has found
The warmest welcome at an inn.
[No License was carried at Ashburton at the general election of November, 1902.]
Somerset Hotel (H. S. Drummond, proprietor), East Street and Burnett Street, Ashburton. Telephone 54. P.O. Box 10. Bankers, Bank of New Zealand. This is the principal and the oldest-established hotel in Ashburton. The public bar and private bar with separate entrances, are on the ground floor; together with a bar parlour, two sitting-rooms, and a dining-room with accommodation for thirty guests. The kitchen and domestic rooms are at the rear of the buildings. The billiard-room is fitted with one of Alcock's first-class tables, with all the latest appurtenances. There are eight sample rooms, all commodious, and well lighted with incandescent lamps. There are also spacious stable at the rear of the hotel. Upstairs there are twenty bedrooms, with a bathroom, with hot and cold water, a lavatory, two commercial rooms, and three private sitting-rooms, all well furnished. There are three pianos upstairs, and there is also a covered balcony overlooking both East and Burnett Streets. The hotel is situated about two minutes' walk from the railway station, is in the centre of the business part of the town, and is directly opposite the auction yards of Messrs. Friedlander Bros. and Mr. D. Thomas's buildings. [No License was carried at Ashburton at the general election of November, 1902, and this article was written and printed prior to that date.]
Mr. Henry Stark Drummond, the Proprietor of the Somerset Hotel, was born in Stirlingshire, Scotland, in 1844. When he was eight years of age his parents went to Lancashire, England, where his father engaged in farming as a tenant of Lord Leigh's. He was educated there and brought up to farming on his father's farm. When a young man he went to Liverpool and entered the employment of a corn and flour merchant. He came to New Zealand in 1879, by the ship “Coriolanus,” Captain Cause. After his arrival at Lyttelton, he went on a farm for some months, and then joined a survey party in the Rakaia Gorge, on Sir John Hall's estate. After that he was engaged by Mr. C. Louisson, of the Hereford Hotel, to manage the Terminus Hotel, opposite the Christchurch railway station, and held the position for four years. He was subsequently at the Railway Refreshment Rooms, Christchurch, for twelve years. Mr. Drummond was then for eighteen months out of business, but he got tired of private life, and in July, 1897, he purchased the lease of the Somerset Hotel, Ashburton. He is a Royal Arch Mason and a member of the Crown Lodge, Sydenham, Christchurch. Mr. Drummond is a vice-president of every athletic and sporting club in the Ashburton district and is a member of the Christchurch Caledonian Society, and of the Canterbury Bowling Club.
Mr. H. S. Drummond.
Mr. G. Meddins.
Kingston, W. T., Blacksmith, Wills Street, Ashburton. Mr. Kingston was born in London, where he learned his trade. For the years he was in the employment of Mr. George Balls, M.R.C.V.S. He was also for some years with Mr. T. Talbot, M.R.C.V.S., of Scotland Yard; altogether his veterinary experiences in England extended over fifteen years. Mr. Kingston landed in New Zealand in October, 1881, and a few months afterwards established himself in business in his present premises, as a veterinary, shoeing, and general blacksmith. He has become widely known throughout the province, chiefly on account of such specialties as rubber pads and shoes, which he imports and manufactures for horses with defective feet. Mr. Kingston's skill in the treatment of horses, especially in shoeing, is much appreciated in the Ashburton district. He was married in London, and has two sons and one daughter.
Muir, Charles, (late Kennedy and Muir), Blacksmith, Engineer, and Coachbuilder, Cameron Street, Ashburton. Mr. Muir was born at Notting Hill, London. At an early age he went to America, and in 1879 arrived in New Zealand. Shortly after landing he went to Ashburton, where he was for about three years with Mr. Charles Reid. To gain further experience he went to Melbourne for four years. He returned to Ashburton in 1892, and after being with Messrs Reid and Gray for two years he took over the engineering branch of their business, in conjunction with Mr. J. Kennedy, of Geraldine, who retired from the partnership in 1901. Mr. Muir has two large workshops with suitable plant, including a large lathe, drills driven by power, and a six-horse power engine. He does a considerable trade in repairing all classes of agricultural implements and in engineering generally. Mr. Muir is a member of the Loyal Ashburton Lodge of Oddfellows; he has passed through all the chairs, and is now P.P.G.M. He resides in Moore Street, Ashburton; is married, and has three sons and one daughter.
Robinson, William H., Butcher, Tancred Street, Ashburton. Mr. Robinson was born in London, and arrived in the colony with his parents in 1876. He was brought up at Newlands, and educated at Ashburton, where, in 1894, he started business with his brother. In 1896 he bought his brother's share and carried on the trade until 1900, when he purchased the “London Butchery,” the property of the late Mr. Barnard. This has proved to be a good investment, for the trade of the shop has increased, both locally and throughout the district. Mr. Robinson is Chief Ranger of the Foresters' Court in Ashburton. As a Freemason he is a member of Lodge Thistle, S.C., and is also a member of the local Orange Lodge.
McElrea, Henry, Woolbroker, Baring Square, Ashburton. Mr. McElrea was born at Moyle, Newtown Stewart, in County Tyrone, Ireland, and was apprenticed to a wheelwright there, but left to come to New Zealand. He arrived at Lyttelton by the ship “Eastern Monarch,” and after working at the building trade in Christchurch, he took to harvesting, and was for years the driver of a threshing machine. In 1883 he started his present business. Mr. McElrea does a large trade in exporting wool and skins, and is known throughout the district as an extensive purchaser of woolly sheepskins. He is an old member of the Loyal Ashburton Lodge of Oddfellows. Mr. McElrea is married, and has one son and one daughter.
Mr. H. McElrea.
Riverbank Nursery, (George Clark and Charles Clark, proprietors), Ashburton. This nursery, which covers five acres and a half of first class land, is situated at the corner of Carter's Terrace and the main South Road, close to the Ashburton bridge. It is well planted with fruit and forest trees, and has also a good stock of flowers and fancy shrubs. The business, which was originally established by Mr. Thomas Sealey, is now managed by Mr. George Clark, who has had thirteen years' experience in nursery work. He was head assistant to the former proprietor, and also his manager for six years. During that time he had contracts for planting several public reserves, and has supplied settlers from the sea to the hills with many varieties of shelter and fruit trees.
Mr. George Clark was born at Kaiapoi, and is a son of Mr. Joseph Clark, of Clarkville, near Kaiapoi, who arrived in New Zealand in 1848, and after farming in the Kaiapoi district for a number of years, removed to Ashburton, where he was engaged in the grain trade up to the time of his death.
Mr. Charles Clark, the Junior Partner in the firm, who is also a native of Kaiapoi, was for some years engaged in the landbroking business at Ashburton, and also had experience in farming. He joined the Ninth New Zealand Contingent which left for South Africa on the 12th of March, 1902, but on the declaration of peace, he returned to Ashburton and joined his brother in business.
Jones, Henry Manwell, Bookseller and Stationer, Ashburton. Mr. Jones was born in London in 1852, and arrived in New Zealand in the early part of 1858. He received his education by private tuition, and was trained as a bookseller and stationer, a calling which he has since followed. Mr. Jones arrived in Ashburton in 1877, and established a business which rapidly developed, until at present (1903) it ranks amongst the best businesses in Ashburton. He was elected to the Ashburton Borough Council in the early nineties. After occupying a seat for a term of three years, he retired from the council till 1896, when he again became a member. Mr. Jones has for some years been a circuit steward of the Wesleyan church, and is now a local preacher. He has taken an active part in the furtherance in the Prohibition movement. As a Freemason, he has been Worshipful Master of St. John's Lodge. He is a member of the Ashburton borough school committee. Mr. Jones was married, in 1875, to Miss Calvert, daughter of Mr William Calvert, of Christchurch, and has four sons and two daughters.
The Canterbury Roller Flour Mills at Ashburton, where the well known “Supreme” brand of flour is manufactured, were originally built in 1873. The mills are situated on a stream from the Ashburton river, and are driven by two turbines and steam power. In September, 1900, the mills were purchased from the Assets Realisation Board by the Messrs Wood Brothers, of Christchurch, manufacturers of “Wood's Flour,” well known as the oldest established brand of page 830 flour in the colony. The mills are connected by rail with the main south line, and have a convenient siding. The old building has just been rebuilt in brick, and the new machinery, which has replaced the old, has a capacity of ten sacks of flour an hour.
Mr. Derisley Wood, Managar of the Canterbury Roller Flour Mills, is a native of Christchurch, and a son of Mr. W. D. Wood, who is referred to in the Old Colonists' section of this volume. He was educated at Christ's College, Christchurch, and afterwards was clerk in the Union Bank of Australia, which he left to join the firm of Wood Brothers. In 1897 he went to New Plymouth, where he represented the firm of Wood Bros. Limited, for three years. In October, 1900, he took over the management of the mill at Ashburton, where he now resides. Mr. Wood is a member of many athletic clubs, and is well known throughout the colony as a runner, having represented New Zealand in Australia, in 1890, and in England in 1892.
Mr. D. Wood.
Claridge, Frank P., Livery Stable Proprietor, Tancred Street, Ashburton. Mr. Claridge was born at Loughborough, Leicestershire, England, and came to Lyttelton in 1879. He was a cadet on Mr. J. R. Campbell's station at Southbridge for some years, and was afterwards engaged in horse dealing in Templeton for three years. In 1890 he removed to Ashburton, and had charge of the Ashburton. Hunt Club hounds for eight years. He went to Riccarton in 1898, and took over training stables there, and trained a large number of horses, principally hunters. As an amateur rider he has won several important races in different parts of the colony. He bought his present business from Mr. McConnell in 1902. The stables, which are built of brick, have an attractive entrance facing Tancred Street. They have accommodation for fifty-two horses, there being forty-two stalls and ten loose boxes. There is also a very comfortable and well furnished waiting room for ladies. The vehicles for hire consist of a large drag, four dog-carts, four gigs, two cabs and two waggonettes, and thirteen horses are kept for the service of the public.
Mr. F. P. Claridge.
Cookson, Edward, Livery Stable Proprietor, Ashburton. Mr. Cookson is a native of England, and came to New Zealand in 1860 by the ship “Roman Emperor.” He was with Mr. E. J. Wakefield for five years, and then took a trip through the Middle Island in which he travelled 800 miles with a son of Lord Masham. In 1867 he commenced in a livery stable at Selwyn, and later on, at Rakaia; and in 1876 he began his present business in a small wooden building, on the site of his present extensive premises, which have as their foundation stone the first taken from the Mount Somers quarries for building purposes. Mr. Cookson's stables are situated in Wills Street, and are widely known for their excellent accommodation, which is second to none in the colony. He has first class vehicles, including buggies, waggonettes and gigs, for the convenience of the travelling public. The stables have room for thirty-five horses. Mr. Cookson had the contract for the Ashburton-Mount Somers bi-weekly mail service for nine years, and held it until the completion of the branch railway line.