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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Wellington Provincial District]

Mr. James Grattan Grey

Mr. James Grattan Grey, Senior Reporter on the Hansard staff, came out from the Home press under three years' engagement as chief of the Lyttelton Times reporting staff. Mr. Grey was also on the staff of the first penny morning paper published in New Zealand, the Auckland New Zealander. Up to the time of the investment of Paris by the Prussian armies, he was a contributor to La Patrie, and for several years was Australasian correspondent of the New York Dramatic News. He was dramatic critic for the New Zealand Sun, and also acted in the same capacity for the Lyttelton Times, under the nom de plume of “Playgoer.” In the early eighties Mr. Grey wrote a series of special articles for the Wellington Evening Post under the heading of “The New Zealander in Australia,” and in 1883 he wrote some pictures of travel for the Christchurch Press. Mr. Grey has also been on the Parliamentary and literary staffs of the Melbourne Argus, Age and Leader, and for these influential journals was sent on numerous important journalistic Mr. James Grattan Grey missions to several parts of Australia and Tasmania. Amongst other things, he contributed a number of life sketches of the then most prominent New Zealand public men to the columns of The Leader, for which he was not only handsomely remunerated, but received the special thanks and commendation of that most famous of Australasian journalists, Mr. David Syme. Many years ago Mr. Grey translated for the Lyttelton Times from a Paris periodical a long and interesting narrative concerning three men who had been cast away on the Auckland Islands and underwent an enforced captivity of nineteen months in that lonely and inhospitable region. In 1879, Mr. Grey brought out a book entitled “His Island Home,” (illustrated by Mr. Gibbs), which went through two editions. Both on the paternal and maternal side, Mr. Grey comes from families which have long been associated with journalism in Dublin, Belfast, London, the United States and India.