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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District]


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Morrinsville has a post, telegraph and money order office, and a Government Savings Bank, and its population numbers about 150 persons. The country around abounds in good agricultural and pastoral land. Morrinsville is on the railway line and is the junction for the Rotorua and Te Aroha lines. It lies about 103 miles to the south-east of Auckland by rail, and its distance from Hamilton is sixteen miles. Lockerbie Estate in the neighbourhood, now the property of the Assets Realisation Board, was formerly owned by Messrs Morrin, whose name is perpetuated in that of the district.

The Waitoa Road Board was established in 1875. Members for 1900: Messrs A. Aitken, A. J. Farmer, F. Cole, J. Borrie and W. P. Chepmell (chairman). The population of the district is 1317; 732 males and 585 females. There are 240 dwellings and 300 ratepayers, who own between 300 and 400 ratable properties. The total revenue of the Board for the year which ended March, 1900, was £908. A loan of about £2000 has been obtained by the district under the Loan to Local. Bodies Act. The ordinary rate is 1£2d in the £.

Mr. Alexander Bremner, Clerk and Collector to the Waitoa Road Board, is an old settler in the Kiwitahi district, where he holds 200 acres, part of the Waikuku block. Mr. Bremner was born in 1819, in Banffshire, Scotland, and was educated at the Normal School, Edinburgh, where he became a teacher. For eleven years he had a school in the south of Scotland, and came to Auckland in 1860 in the ship “Red Jacket, under engagement with the Provincial Government's Education Department, and was appointed teacher at Waitoa South, where he continued for eight years. He then resigned his position, and went on a farm for several years, but in consequence of an accident, he reentered the service of the Board of Education and was appointed to Cambridge, where he remained from 1870 to 1875, when he settled at the Wiakuku block. Mr. Bremner was married, in 1863, to a daughter of Mr. W. Johnstone, late of Ruapuke, Raglan. Mrs. Bremner died in 1869, leaving two sons and two daughters.

Lieutenant Francis Joseph Marshall, of the Piako Mounted Rifles, was born in 1851 near Banbury, Oxfordshire, England, and was educated in Bedford. He was brought up to country life, and came out to Auckland in the ship “Brinhilda,” in 1883, in charge of stock for the New Zealand Stud Company. Mr. Marshall afterwards took cattle to San Francisco on behalf of the same company. On his return to the colony he took charge, for Messrs T. and S. Morrin, of the sheep and cattle on Locherbie station, and about 1888 he commenced business as a butcher and farmer at Morrinsville. Mr. Marshall is well known as a breeder of thoroughbreds and draught horses. He has been a churchwarden of the local Anglican church since May, 1895, and has served as a member of the local school committee. Mr. Marshall was married, in 1888, to a daughter of Mr. J. Turnbull, of Morrinsville.

Hanna, photo.Lieut. F. J. Marshall.

Hanna, photo.
Lieut. F. J. Marshall.

Morrinsville Junction Railway Station, which was opened about 1880, is the junction of the Auckland-Te Aroha and Rotorua railways. There are two asphalt passenger platforms, and the station buildings contain a ladies' waiting room, a large general waiting room, a post office lobby with post and telegraph offices, a ticket office, and offices for the Inspector of Permanent Way. There are also large goods and engine sheds, and cattle loading yards. Five workmen's cottages adjoin the station, and the Bank of New Zealand Estates Company has a large building connected with the siding for seed-cleaning and storage purposes. On three days in the week eight trains pass through the station, and six trains on the remaining three days.

Mr. Robert James Walter Schofield, Stationmaster, Postmaster, and Telegraphist at Morrinsville Junction, was born in London in 1863. He arrived in Auckland by the ship “St. Leonard's” in 1874, and three years later joined the railway department as a cadet. Mr. Schofield became stationmaster at Taupiri, where he continued for seven years, and was appointed to Morrinsville in January, 1880.

The Morrinsville Public School originally established in 1875, is now conducted in a building which was erected in 1898. The two-acre section attached to the new building is planted with ornamental trees, and a portion of the land is laid out in flower beds. The school has accommodation for eighty pupils, and the average attendance is sixty-four. Two pupil teachers assist the headmaster.

Mr. DOn Roderick Frank Campbell. Headmaster of Morrinsville Public School, who holds a D2 certificate, was born at Waipu in 1872. He served his pupil teachership at Onehunga and at the Auckland page 786 city schools, and was for three years master at Otakeo near Tapu, Thames, three years second assistant at Beresford Street School, Auckland, and was appointed to Morrinsville in 1899.

Waddington, Edward, L.R.C.P. (Edin.), L.R.C.P. (Ireland), M.R.C.S.E., M.D., (Edin. and London), L.A.C., Fellow Royal Medico-Chirurgical Society, London, Physician and Surgeon, Morrinsville. Dr. Waddington was born in the city of Lincoln, England, matriculated at University College, London, and gained his degrees between 1849 and 1862. He joined the militia in 1853 as staff medical officer, and served in the military transport service to and from the Crimea. In 1864 he arrived in Auckland, and settled in the Waikato as senior surgeon to the 2nd Waikato Regiment under Colonel Haultain. Dr. Waddington has resided in Morrinsville since 1893. He was married, in 1847, to a daughter of the late Mr. Ellice Bristowe, and has two sons surviving.

Hedley, Joseph William, Coach-builder, Wheewirght, and Blacksmith, Morrinsville. This business was originally established about 1883 by Messrs T. and S. Morrin, and Mr. Hedley bought the freehold in 1899. The large buildings are of wood and iron, and include a wheelwright's shop, a paint shop, a smithy, and an engineering department. Mr. Hedley was born at West Woodburn near Newcastle-on-Tyne, England, came to Auckland by the ship “Jessie Readman,” in 1882, and served an apprenticeship in the north of Auckland. He acted as smith to the Kauri Timber Company, and after two years in Sydney, settled himself at Wade in 1895. Three years later he established himself in business, but sold his interest, and removed to Morrinsville, where he found employment with his predecessor, from whom he bought the business. Mr. Hedley has served on the local school committee. As a Freemason, he is a Past Master of Lodge Rodney, 1711 E.C., Warkworth, and was also connected with the Loyal Warkworth Pioneer Lodge, I.O.O.F., M.U.

Nottingham Castle Hotel (Wenzl Schollum, proprietor), Morrinsville. This hostelry is a two storey building, with a verandah and balcony on two sides. It contains eighteen rooms, including eleven bedrooms and three sitting rooms, and a dining room that will seat twenty-five guests. It was established in 1880 and has been conducted by the present proprietor since 1897.

The Railway Boardinghouse (William Charies Pickett, proprietor), Morrinsville Junction Railway Station, Morrinsville. This comfortable establishment was founded in 1898. The building is of one storey, and contains ten rooms, including a sitting room and a large dining room.

Mr. William Charle Pickett, the Proprietor, was born in 1861, in Oxfordshire, England. He came as a boy to New Zealand with his parents, had some experience on New Zealand railways, and was afterwards engaged in railway construction work in New South Wales and Victoria. Before leaving Melbourne he had charge of a steam engine for some time. In 1890 Mr. Pickett returned to New Zealand and became a fireman on the Midland Railway line at Belgrove. Three years later he was appointed by the Bank of New Zealand Estates Company to the charge of the large seed cleaning establishment at Morrinsville, and still holds that position. Mr. Pickett was married, in 1892, to a daughter of Mr. Brooks, of Nelson, and has three daughters and one son.

Botteley, photo.Mr. W. C. Pickett.

Botteley, photo.
Mr. W. C. Pickett.

Clifford, H. And J. (Henry John Clifford and John Miles Clifford), General Merchants, Bakers, and Storekeepers, Morrinsville. Bankers, Bank of New Zealand, Hamilton. Established 1883. This well-known firm has carried on a large and successful business for the last fourteen years. The premises, which are built of wood, contain a floor space of about 5000 square feet, well fitted up, and divided into various departments. The stock, which includes goods imported direct from the manufacturers, is one of the most complete in the Waikato, and the firm's business connection extends throughout the district, some of the customers living as far as seventy miles away. Messrs H. and J. Clifford hold several important agencies; namely, Kempthorne, page 787 Prosser and Co.'s manures, Cooper's sheep dip, Reid and Gray's agricultural implements, Norwich Union Insurance Company, Mamaku Mountain Rimu Company, and several others.

Mr. H. J. Clifford, J.P., is a native of Gloucestershire, England, where he was born in 1853, and was brought up to the tea trade. He came to New Zealand in 1881 and established the firm's business in 1883. Mr. Clifford is married to a daughter of Mr. U. J. Davis, of Court House, Painswick, and has four children.

Mr. H. J. Clifford's Residence.

Mr. H. J. Clifford's Residence.

Mr. J. M. Clifford was born in Gloucestershire in 1865. He was educated at King Edward's Grammar School, Cheltenham, and was brought up to the wholesale drapery trade in London. Mr Clifford came to this colony and joined his brother in 1885. He is a Justice of the Peace, is married, and has four children.

Kereone (Alexander Aitken, manager) is the property of Mr. William Aitken, and is 7500 acres in extent. Of the total area 2000 acres are in cultivation, and the balance is a rough run. The whole estate carries, on an average, 5000 sheep and 250 head of Polled Angus cattle.

Mr. Alexander Aitken was born in 1851, in Glasgow, Scotland. He was educated in Auckland, to which he came from Sydney with his parents by the ship “Moa,” the figure-head of which is still to be seen at the North Shore, near the wharf. Mr. Aitken was well known in business circles in Auckland for about twenty years, when he was connected with the seed and auctioneering business, which is still conducted under the name of Alexander Aitken, Ltd. He retired from business in 1890 and took up his residence at “Kereone,” of which he has been manager since 1893. He has been a member of the Waitoa Road Board since 1893, and was for three years a member of the Piako County Council, on which he represented the Piako riding. He was married, in 1881, to a daughter of the late Mr. Aquartier, of Auckland, and has two sons.

Locherbie Station, at Morrinsville, is the property of the Assets Realisation Board, for which Mr. John McCaw is the general superintendent. “Locherbie” is further referred to in connection with Matamata.

Mr. John Isaac Trust, Head Shepherd in charge of Locherbie Station, was born at Howick, near Auckland, in 1860. He was brought up to farm work and entered the service of the Auckland Agricultural Company in March, 1881, as stockman at Fencourt estate, where he remained until that estate was subdivided and sold. He was appointed to his present position at Locherbie station in 1900. As an Oddfellow Mr. Trust is attached to the Howick Lodge. He was married, in 1883, to a daughter of the late Mr. F. Harris, of Pakurangi, and has one daughter.

Mr. Thomas Heath formerly had the management of the three well known properties, Locherbie, Waitoa and Rangatea, in the Waitoa district. The three estates contained in all about 50,000 acres, and carried 45,000 sheep and 3000 head of cattle. These properties were the first in the North Island to use the Wolseley sheep-shearing machines. Mr. Heath was born at Howick, near Auckland, in 1853, and entered the service of the company in 1875, as manager of a property near Cambridge. He remained in that position for several years and was then transferred to Waitoa, which he managed for ten years. Some time later “Locherbie” was added to his charge, and he then superintended the three estates, which were managed in a most systematic manner.

McDonald, James, Farmer, “Sunnybrae,” Morrinsville. This settler's fine compact farm contains about 482 acres and carries 500 crossbred sheep and fifty head of cattle, and about twenty acres are laid down in crop each year. The property has been occupied for the past twenty years by Mr. McDonald, who is a native of Halifax, Yorkshire, where he was born in 1856, and he accompanied his parents to New Zealand in 1860. His father, the late Mr. John McDonald, settled at Wairoa South, where he owned a fine property, known as “Woodlands,” for many years. On the death of his father, Mr. McDonald acquired his present property, on which he has since resided, in a charming house with beautiful gardens, and where he takes a great interest in the welfare of the district. He is married and has two daughters.

McDonald, Thomas, Farmer, Pakarau, Morrinsville. Mr. McDonald's farm consists of 416 acres, all down in grass and well subdivided, and carried about 150 crossbred sheep, besides horses and cattle. The property was originally part of one block, but on the death of the late Mr. John McDonald, of “Woodlands,” it was apportioned between two brothers. Mr. Thomas McDonald, the second son, was born in Halifax, England, in 1849. After the arrival of his parents in the Colony he remained on his father's property at “Woodlands,” Wairoa South, till 1874, when he took over the management of the Pakarau farm. In 1879, he travelled through the various farming districts of New Zealand for three years to increase his agricultural knowledge, and after his father's death he settled with his wife and family on the portion of land that became his at Pakarau. He was one of the earliest settlers in the district, and experienced some rough times. Mr. McDonald has four children.

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Motumaoho Estate (Frederick Cole, manager), Morrinsville. This large estate is the property of Mr. Arundel, of Patea, and is situated on the main road from Morrinsville to Te Aroha. The property contains in all 5050 acres, 3000 of which consist of rich swamp land, capable of running a large number of stock. At present there are about 450 head of cattle and 375 crossbred sheep, and about 100 acres are down in turnips for sheep feed. The property has been occupied for more than twenty years, and has a pleasantly situated homestead surrounded by tasteful plantations.

Mr. Frederick Cole, the Manager of Motumaoho Estate, is a son of the late Mr. J. C. Cole, of Karori, Wellington, who was one of the pioneer settlers of that city. He was born in 1858 and was brought up to farming in Carterton. He then carried on a carting business between Wellington and Karori and subsequently purchased a farm at Patea. Afterwards he entered the employment of Mr. Arundel, of Patea, and about six years ago he was appointed by that gentleman to manage the Motumaoho Estate.

Mr. F. Cole.

Mr. F. Cole.

Turnbull, John, Farmer, “Springdale,” Morrinsville. Mr. Turnbull's fine farm contains about 800 acres of land in an excellent state of cultivation. He was born in Perthshire. Scotland, in 1835, and was brought up to farming. In 1863 he came to New Zealand, per ship “Gertrude,” and landed in Auckland. He joined the Waikato Militia during the war and was engaged principally in the hard work of road-making through the enemy's country. At the conclusion of the war he purchased a farm at Tamaki East, where he resided for four years. In 1870, he acquired “Springdale Farm, and was the first white man to settle in the district. The land was all in titri and fern, and for a number of years Mr. Turnbull underwent much rough pioneering, as it took five days to pack stores from Hamilton to the farm. Mr. Turnbull was a member of the Waikato road board for eleven years, and was also on numerous other local bodies. He was married before leaving Scotland, and has three sons and three daughters.