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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]

The Hon. John Barton Arundel Acland

The Hon. John Barton Arundel Acland was born in 1823 in Devonshire, England, and educated at Harrow and Oxford, where he graduated M.A. He at first took up law as a profession, but decided to relinquish it in favour of sheepfarming, and came out to New Zealand in 1854, in the ship “Royal Stuart.” He served for ten months as a cadet with Mr. H. Tancred, and in 1855, in conjunction with Mr. Tripp, he took up 250,000 acres of pastoral lands, including Mounts Peel, Possession, Somers, and the Orari Gorge runs. At the dissolution of the partnership Mr. Acland retained Mount Peel, which then comprised over 100,000 acres. Mr. Acland has always taken an active part in public affairs. He was called to the Legislative Council on the 8th of July, 1865, and resigned on the 1st of June, 1899. Mr. Acland has been chairman of the Mount Peel Road Board from its inception in 1870. He has taken an active part in church matters, and was a member of the Synod for many years. In 1869 he built the Mount Peel church, which has seats for eighty worshippers. Mr. Acland was for many years a member of the Board of Governors of Canterbury College. He was married, in 1860, to Miss Harper, eldest daughter of Bishop Harper, sometime Primate of New Zealand.