Civic Affairs, 1863–1870—Football—de Murska Concerts—Dr. Featherston Memorial—A Game of Chess—A Footpath Obstruction—Jubilee of the Colony, 1890.
“Where now the Central City stretches wide,
And seaward pushes back the conquered tide,
Wild forests, rich in every tint of green,
Mantled the hills and beautify the scene;
Where now the ships assemble to out pour
The garnered wealth of many a distant shore,
The white foom, ‘scaping from the waters blue,
Swept up the beach and lapped the rude canoe;
…..Well may the Central City raise her voice,
And summon all her children to rejoice.”
In the history of the Wellington Corporation a blank of twenty years appears, during which time the affairs of the town were looked after, or neglected, by the Provincial Government.
In 1863, however, when the population had slowly increased to about 6,000, the town was divided into three wards, and a Town Board elected, the Commissioners of which were appointed presumably by the Provincial Council. The following are the names of the Commissioners and the Wards, in whose interests they were appointed to act:—Messrs. W. Allen, C. B. Borlase and George Hart (Thorndon Ward); John Plimmer, George Moore and L. Levy (Lambton Ward); John Martin, William Hickson and J. H. Horner (Te Aro Ward); W. Allen, Chairman; W. Bannister, Clerk; and Mr. R. M. Street, Surveyor.
The rateable value of the property in town in 1863 was about £28,225, of which more than half was located in the Te Aro Ward. The Town Board existed for seven years and did useful work. Besides those mentioned above, the following were members of the Board:—Messrs. Edward Pearce, W. Allen, J. Drans-field, W. Bragg, Joseph Burne, S. S. Jacka, C. J. Pharazyn, J. Plimmer, J. H. Wallace, R. Collins, W. Bishop, E. W. Mills, M. Quin, R. Pharazyn, George Aicken, R. H. Carpenter, George Hunter, J. B. Wallace, and Captain Sharp. The first four gentlemen acted as chairmen at various times. Though the Act of Parliament, making provision for the institution of Municipal Corporations in the Colony was passed in 1867, it was not until three years later that Wellington tried a Council elected by its authority.
The “Independent” of the 14th July, 1870 contains the names, comprising three columns, of ratepayers of the Town of Wellington, petitioning to be constituted a Borough. The witnesses' names page 178 attached thereto were:—Messrs. John Plimmer, James Ames, Michael Quin, John Duck and Nicholas Marchant. This was dated 1st June, 1870. Sir George F. Bowen received the petition.
This Council, with Mr. “Joe” Drans-field as Mayor, met in August or September, and Messrs. C. B. Borlase, R. H. Carpenter, W. Miller, E. W. Mills, Lewis Moss, J. Plimmer, M. Quin and D. Raine each read a declaration solemnly to execute all the power and authorities reposed in him as a Councillor by virtue of the Municipal Corporation Act of 1867. The population at this time was 8,000. The Corporation revenue for the first year was £4,716, and the expenditure was nearly £24 greater. Ten years later the revenue was nearly ten times as much, and the expenditure over twenty times as much. There were some loans for street improvements allocated and spent in 1881. In 1891 the revenue had increased to £57,270.
“The game of football seems likely,” says the “Independent” newspaper of the 23rd August, 1870, “to become as popular here as a winter sport, as cricket is gaining favour as a summer one, for notwithstanding the woeful state of the ground, some enthusiasts have met several times lately to enjoy this old English pastime. And on Saturday, seldom have we seen a game played with more spirit and pluck on both sides, and so long as the ball had to be kicked along the new made artificial ground it was well enough, but once off that part, all sorts of bogs and quagmires were encountered, and how the players kept on their legs is astonishing, though, of course, almost everybody had at least one tumble, a casualty that did not improve the toilet.
“The teams were the Wellington, and some men-o'-wars-men. The latter were ultimately victorious by obtaining a goal.
This game, always a rough one, becomes more so on bad ground, but nothing occurred to disturb good temper, even for an instant.
The following is a list of the players:—H.M.S. “Rosario”: Moore, Gorden, Adair, Carlyon, Rudland, Mead, Roberts, Head, Wise, Urwin, Currie, Vaughan, Simpson, Warner, Winter, and Murphy. Wellington: Manning, Harrison, Munro, Maclean*, Parkes, Williamson, Isherwood, Otterson, Crampton, Macdonald, Case, Beale, Goring, Baker, and another whose name we have been unable to obtain.”
“The play in the football match on the Basin Reserve on Saturday, the 22nd July, 1876,” states the “Evening Post,” “was tolerably good, but neither side could succeed in kicking a goal. The multitude of black and yellow striped legs (the new uniform), had an exceedingly comical effect, looking like so many magnified wasp bodies.
“At a meeting of the Committee of the Football Club, a letter was read from the Secretary of the Nelson Club, stating that a Nelson team of fifteen would leave about the 10th August, and suggested that the game should be decided by points. A goal to count six, touch down two, and a force down half a point, and also that it be considered lawful to pick up the ball only when on the bound and not when it is either dead or rolling along the ground. The team selected to play against Nelson were: Campbell (2), Werry, Bishop (2), Webby, Irvine, Niven, Thompson, Fitzgerald, Sheppard, Black, James, Lynch and Boscowan.” †
Fig. 57A.—Reading from left to right: Edward Wakefield (M.P.), R. D. D. Maclean (Sir Douglas), and Oliver Wakefield.
Fig. 57b.—Footballers of the Seventies. Some of the members of the Wellington Football Team who played at Nelson, in the second match. Wellington v. Nelson, 1870. The names, as submitted from memory by the late Sir Douglas Maclean (one of the players) are:—Standing: Maclean, Gore, Kemp, ——, R. W. Kane (extreme right). Those sitting are: H. Lyon, McIntosh or Park, Hudson Williamson or Bishop. Other players at the time were: Cockburn-Hood, Monro, James, Riddiford, Arthur and Isherwood.
A meeting was held in the Provincial Hall on Monday, July 24th, 1876, for the purpose of devising means to perpetuate the memory of Dr. Featherston. The Mayor, Wm. Hutchison, presided, and a Committee was formed comprising Messrs. Dransfield, Duncan, Woodward, Buller, Levy, G. Hunter, G. Allen, E. W. Mills, Levin, Seed, de Bathe Brandon, Buckley, Dr. Grace, and the Mayor.†
The local papers of the 27th July, 1876, advertised three De Murska Grand Concerts to take place in the Oddfellows' Hall, Lambton Quay (site of T. and G. building). Amongst the items were “La Somnambula,” and “Lo, here the Gentle Lark.” Maestro Strauss Illa and Signor Susini were to assist, and Mr. J. F. Hadley to accompany. A special train was to leave for the Lower Hutt after each concert. Another announcement appeared to the effect that six members of the House of Representatives had challenged as many chess players of the City to play a match, and the latter would meet to choose a team. The Parliamentary team comprised Messrs. Ballance, Bryce, Lusk, Rees, Stout and Dr. Greenwood.
Breach of Municipal Bye-Law.
Information had been laid against a resident of Karori, for a breach of the Municipal Bye-Law, by tying his horse up so as to interrupt traffic on the footpath. An apology induced the magistrate to dismiss the defendant with a caution, and a reminder that the streets of Wellington were not now so unfrequented that the ancient practice could be continued with impunity.
Jubilee of Colonisation, 1890.
The “Evening Post” Christmas Number, 1903, commenting on the jubilee celebrations writes thus:—
“There was a great foregathering of pioneers on the 22nd January, 1890, when Wellington worthily celebrated the Jubilee of Colonisation in New Zealand.
“The re-union was as pathetic as it was unique. Though in the decade or so preceding the ranks of the first-comers had been rapidly thinning, nearly all, if not all, of the “first ships” were represented, and there were even a few hardy pioneers of the ante-Colonial days.
“There were two claimants to the honour of the being the first child of European parentage born in Port Nicholson, and the evidence was so closely balanced that Solomon might have hesitated to decide. Fellow-passengers and friends, separated almost from the day of landing, met once more and exchanged reminiscences. The Governor took part in the proceedings, and apparently saw no indication of “high treason,” or even of sedition, in the original flag of the New Zealand Company, which was borne at the head of the procession.
“The day's proceedings closed with a picnic to the children in the Basin Reserve and a ‘spread’ which will long abide in the memories of those who were entertained.
“The list of Pioneers and sons and daughters of pioneers (the line being drawn at 1850), who attended the gathering filled a closely-printed column of the ‘Post,’ and so few comparatively remain with us now (1903) that after less than fourteen years the column reads almost like an obituary list.”The “Post” offered a prize for a Jubilee Ode, which was won by Mr. J. James, the judge being Mr. J. E. Fitzgerald. page 181
Fig. 58—Wi Tako died on the 6th November, 1887, and lay in State at his house (near the Ramp, Hutt Road), Pito-one, until his burial, 20th November. On the walls of the room are Maori Mats, Weapons and Paintings of his son William, and daughter Josephine Ngatata. The latter married Daniel Love.page 182 The flag of the New Zealand Company was identical in device with the flag brought by Mr. Busby to the Bay of Islands in 1835. It is thus described:—“White ground with a red St. George's Cross. The upper quarter has a blue ground with a small red St. George's Cross on it, and in each corner a white star.” One of the papers of the day, Thursday, 23rd January, 1890, commenting on the celebrations of the previous day, states:—“Wellington undoubtedly surpassed itself yesterday in its celebration of the Jubilee of the landing of New Zealand's pioneer settlers. The entire populace joined in the affair in the most whole hearted way. One and all concerned in the preparations are to be congratulated upon the marked success that attended the festival, but specially are the public indebted to Messrs. J. H. Wallace, T. W. McKenzie and J. Petherick, to whose suggestion the whole plan of festivities were originally due before it was communicated to the general Committee, who have so ably carried it out.”
Fig. 59—Shows the gun carriage, behind which are the two grandsons, Wi Tako Kuru Love (with Maori Mat) and Hapi (the small boy by Kuru's left. George Te Puni and Martin Towhare (with the tall hat draped with a crepe streamer) are nearby.
Fig. 60—The funeral procession passing through the military ranks at the Cementery opposite the Railway Station. Te Puni's Old Pa, extending from the “Jubilee” hulk and jetty may be seen on the water-front The Gear Company's Chimney marks the approximate locality of Wharpouri's grave. Figs. 58 to 60 by courtesy Mrs. Ripeka Love, O.B.E., and Mr. Hapi Love.
The following list, published in the “Evening Post,” constitutes the Old Identities who “mustered” on this occasion:—
Our Pioneers' Muster Roll.It would be an exceedingly interesting feature in connection with such an historical event as that of yesterday to place on record the names of all the early settlers who were present. We have gone to considerable trouble to compile a list of those who were in the procession, but from the circumstances it is quite possible that some have been omitted. So far as we have been able to learn, however, the particulars that we now append are full and correct, but if any of our readers can furnish the names of any pioneers who have been overlooked, we shall be glad to complete the list later on. The roll of founders of the colony present stands as follows:—With the Mayors' carriages—Mr. George Allen, arrived in the “Catherine Stuart Forbes” in 1841 (had visited Auckland in 1839, and returned to England); and Mr. John Plimmer, 1842, in the “Gertrude.” In the first old identities' carriage —Mr. J. H. Wallace and Mr. P. Hume, 1840, the “Lady Lilford”; Mr. J. Harding (of Waipukurau, Hawke's Bay), 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. H. Collett, 1840, the “London”; Mr. C. W. Keys, 1840, the “Cuba.” Second carriage— Mrs. Robert Burgess (maiden name Petherick), 1840, the “Aurora”; Mrs. Calders, Mrs. Gee, and Mrs. Colman, 1840, the “Blenheim” (these three ladies are sisters, and have lived at Kaiwarra ever since their arrival); Mr. David Lewis, 1840, the “Oriental.” Third carriage—Mrs. page 183 Caroline Evans, 1840, the “Adelaide”; Mrs. Margaret Smith, 1841, the “Lady Nugent”; Mrs. Jane Retter, 1841, the “Lord William Bentinck”; Mrs. Rebecca McLeod, 1841, the “Catherine Stuart Forbes.” Fourth carriage— Mr. G. Mudgway and Mrs. C. Mudgway, 1841, the “Catherine Stuart Forbes”; Mrs. John Webber, 1841, the “Lady Nugent”; Mrs. Hook, the “Mautoki” (cannot recall the date); and Wi Hapi Pakau, of the Hutt, who says that he is one of the few Maoris alive who recollect the arrival of the pioneers of Wellington. Fifth carriage—Mr. Thomas Freethy, who came to New Zealand in the French vessel “Justine,” in 1840; Mr. Charles Collis, 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. David Dick, 1840, the “Bengal Merchant”; Mr. Edwin Ticehurst, 1840, the “Adelaide”; Mr. John Knowles, 1841, the “Gertrude”; Mrs. B. Harrison, 1841, the “Catherine Stuart Forbes.” Sixth carriage—Mr. G. H. Luxford and Mr. W. N. Luxford, 1840, the “Adelaide”; Mr. Ward Parker, came to Adelaide by the “Poictiers” in 1848, and came on to New Zealand in the “Mary Ray” in 1862; Mr. C. Simmonds, 1856, the “Ann Wilson”; Mr. T. A. Shirley, 1841, the “Arab.” Seventh carriage—Mr. R. Hewit, 1840, the “Adelaide”; Mr. G. Buck, 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. W. Gooden, 1841, the “Arab”; Mr. T. Benton, 1842, the “London”; Mr. John Daysh, 1841, the “Gertrude.” On foot—Mr. John Gell (wearing a Maori mat), 1842, the “Bombay”; Mrs. Epuni and Mrs. M. Maunie, representing native old identities; Mr. Lancelot Holmes, until lately Chief Pilot of Wellington, born at Petone in March, 1840, said to be the first European child born in Port Nicholson; Messrs. J. Petherick, F. G. Petherick, and R. Davis, 1840, the “Aurora”; Mr. J. Brown, 1840, the “Blenheim”; Mr. T. Howell, 1840, the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. J. Howe, the “Clifton”; Messrs. N. Valentine and J. Valentine, 1846, the “Java” landed first in Auckland); Mr. H. Parker, 1845, the “Gertrude”; Mr. R. Prouse, 1840, the “Duke of Roxburgh”; Mr. P. Gooden, 1840, the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. G. Hobbs, 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. J. H. Houghton and Mr. E. W. Petherick, 1840, the “Aurora”; Mr. E. A. Hutchings, 1848, the “William Alfred”; Mr. J. Retter, 1841, the “Lord William Bentinck”; Mr. Eli Buck, 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. Hart Udy, senr., and Messrs. W. Udy, J. Udy, and Hart Udy, junr. his sons), 1840, the “Duke of Roxburgh”; Messrs. James Knight, Samuel Smith, J. W. Bryant, J. C. Bryant, T. Bassett, J. Hawke, W. Cocking, David Hunter and Robert Hunter, 1840, the “Duke of Roxburgh”; Mr. C. Saywell, 1840, the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. C. W. Brown, born at the Hutt in 1841, his parents having arrived in the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. J. Cudby, 1843, the “Thomas Parkes”; Mr. J. G. Ross, 1842, the “Lady Nugent”; Mr. W. Dorren, born at Petone in 1840: Mr. Thomas Rogers, born at Petone in 1840—disputes Mr. L. Holmes' claim to be the first European child born in the district (see Register of Births); Mr. H. Eglinton, 1849, the “Slain's Castle”; Messrs. G. Tonks, W. Tonks, T. Morgan, and G. Bell, 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. G. Spackman, 1840, the “Bolton”; Mr. J. Bills, 1842, the “Clifton”; Mr. W. Rowe, 1859, the “Wild Duck”; Mr. W. Lockyer, 1842, the “London”; Mr. H. Green, 1853, the “Rajah”; Mr. C. Mudgway, 1841, the “Catherine Stuart Forbes”; Mr. A. W. Rudman, 1842, the “Phoebe” (to Nelson); Mr. J. Vile, 1841, the “Arab”; Mr. J. D. Benge, 1841, the “Olympus”; Mr. E. Cahill, 1846, the “Java”; Mr. Geo. Every, 1840, the “Bolton”; Mr. Jas. Robinson, born here in 1842—parents came in the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. C. W. Brodie, 1842, the “Cuba”; Mr. F. Cooper, 1841, the “Oriental”; Mr. G. Judd, 1840, the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. C. Stuart, 1842, the “Birman”; Mr. D. Clark, 1840, the “Glenbervie”; Mr. T. Hayward, 1846, the “Driver”; Mr. J. Philps, 1841, the “Lord William Bentinck”; Mr. D. Dick, junr., born here in 1840—parents came in the “Bengal Merchant”; Mr. Joseph James, 1849, the “Catherine Stuart Forbes”; Mr. W. Dodds, 1841, the “Lady Nugent”; Mr. C. W. Gooden, 1840, Mr. P. Monaghan, 1846, the “Martha Ridgway”; Mr. H. Southee, 1841. the “Lady Nugent”; Mr. P. Managhan, 1846, the “Java”; Mr. G. L. Layfield, 1853, the “Northfleet”; Mr. J. Hill, 1841, the “Arab”; Mr. E. Bannister, 1840, the “Bolton”; Mr. T. W. McKenzie, 1840, the “Adelaide”; Mr. A. Murray, 1841, the “Tyne”; Mr. A. Pringle, 1840, the “London”; Mr. H. F. Eagar, 1842, the “Scotia” (from Sydney); Mr. W. B. Howe, 1841, the “Clifton”; Mr. G. Barrett, 1848, the “Bernicia”; Mr. J. Bidmead, 1842, the “London”; Mr. D. Harris, 1842, the “George Fyfe”; Mr. G. Brown, 1841, the “Blenheim”; Mr. T. O'Malley, 1846, the “Lord Auckland”; Mr. Jas. Smith, 1856, the “Lancashire Witch”; Mr. H. Rudman, born in Nelson, 1843—parents came in the “Phoebe”; Mr. T. H. Robinson, 1841, “Lady Nugent”; Mr. G. H. Hawkins, born in Wellington, 1844; Mr. W. Sievers, 1849, the “Mariner”; Mr. W. Jenkins—was in the colony before the New Zealand Company's settlers, having arrived in the “Henry Freeling” in 1836; Mr. J. Webber, 1841, “Lady Nugent”; Mr. Jas. Smith, 1840, the whaling ship “David”; Mr. T. Bevan. 1841, the “Lady Nugent”; Mr. R. Miller, 1840, the “Blenheim”; Mr. T. Allen, born at Wellington in 1848—parents came in the “Catherine Stuart Forbes”; Mr. A. R. Meech, born here in 1845—parents came in the Oriental”: Mr. A. Wall, 1841, the “Lord William Bentinck”; Mr. J. Yule, 1840, the “Bengal Merchant”; Mr. E. Waite, born here in 1850—parents arrived in the “Sir Robert Peel”; Mr. Hugh Calders, born here in 1848—parents' vessel, the “Blenheim”; Mr. Francis Bradey, 1840, the “Adelaide”: Mr. Duncan Sinclair, born here in 1849—parents landed at Kapiti in 1846; Mr. James Lingard, 1841, the “Gertrude”; Mr. Joseph Rawson, came from Sydney in 1846; Mr. James Stockbridge, 1842, the “London”; Mr. T. O'Loughlin, born here in 1843; Mr. D. Hobbs, 1843, the “Birman”; page 184page 185 Mr. John Knowles, 1841, the “Oriental”; Mr. J. E. Smith, came to Auckland in the “Tomatine” in 1842; Mr. J. O'Meara, 1842, the “Planet”; Mr. Fred. Bradey, 1840, the “Adelaide”; Mr. R. Woodman, born here in 1840—parents came in the “Bolton”; Mr. D. Cruickshank, 1850, the “Phœbe Dunbar”; Mr. John Pattinson, 1840, the “George Fyfe”; Mr. H. Ashton, 1848, the “Blundell”; Mr. C. Hewitt, 1846, the “Levant”; Mr. T. Mackintosh, came to Nelson in 1842 in the “Levant”; Mr. J. Davison, about 1840, the “Marion Kelly”; Mr. F. W. Revell, born at Taranaki in 1843—parents' vessel, the “William Bryan,” the first ship to Taranaki; Mr. A. Wise, came from Melbourne in 1855; Mr. M. O'Connor, arrived 1846; Mr. G. Sample, 1845; Mr. T. Claridge, 1842, the “London”; Mr. W. Edwards, 1849, the “Larkins,” Mr. T. Campbell, one of the arrivals by the “Lady Nugent,” was unable to be present personally, but was represented by his son, Mr. Thomas Campbell.
Fig. 61—Panorama of Wellington, 1893. The Kumutoto Stream is on the left, Mount Street in the central foreground, Bethune's Paddock to the left of Mt. Street, Hunter's Paddock to the right (opposite Sir John Duthie's house (Donbank). The Public Library is in the centre of the picture.
It is estimated that fully 5000 people must have been present on Tuesday evening at the opening of the Jubilee Band Rotunda, which, through the exertions of Mr. George Woodward has been added to the attractions now presented by the Thorndon Esplanade. The ceremony was performed by the Mayoress, Mrs. Chas. J. Johnston, in a brief, but appropriate speech; his Worship the Mayor being also present. The Rotunda was then occupied in turn by the Garrison and Protestant Bands and Jenkins' Band, each of which gave musical selections, and an effective display of fireworks took place in the course of the evening.
Pioneers or Descendants in 1913.
A list of the pioneers who mustered at the tents of registration in Newtown Park on Anniversary Day, 1913, is given on page 105, Journal of the Early Settlers, September, 1913 (Vol. 1, No. 3.)page breakpage breakpage breakpage break
† “Evening Post,” 28th July, 1876.
† “Evening Post,” 25th July, 1876.