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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Canterbury Provincial District]



Bland, James Storey, Farmer, Winchmore, Ashburton. Mr. Bland was born at Sutherland, Durham, England, in 1850, and is the second son of the late Mr. James Bland, wno came to New Zealand in 1859, by the “Zealandia,” Captain Foster, and landed at Lyttelton. Mr. Bland, senior, went to the Ashburton sheep station, owned by Mr. Thomas Moorhouse, whom he served first as shepherd and then as manager. In 1864 he purchased land at Winchmore, and managed it until his death, which was caused by an accident in 1873. On Mr. J. S. Bland's marriage with Miss Nicholas, daughter of a very old settler of Ashburton, the property was divided among the brothers, and Mr. Bland has been farming ever since. Mr. Bland's farm, consisting of 700 acres, is named “Broughton,” and its chief productions are sheep and grain. Mr. Bland was on the committee of the Ashburton Agricultural and Pastoral Society for several years. He has a family of four sons and four daughters, and his children drive to and from school, which is seven miles away.

Gates, Edward, Farmer, Ashburton. Mr. Gates was born at Richmond, Yorkshire, in 1859. He was brought up to farming on his father's property, came to New Zealand in 1880, by the sailing ship “Rangitikei,” landed at Lyttelton, and was engaged to manage Messrs Wilkin and Carter's station and Grove Farm at Ashburton. He managed the farm till the death of Mr. Carter in 1886, and then entered into business on his own account. He has gone into extensive operations as a farmer, and is well known throughout New Zealand as a breeder of thoroughbred stock. Mr. Gates has a stud farm of 150 acres, and he goes in extensively for general farming on a property of 1000 acres, on the Lagmhor road, close to Tinwald. At his stud farm he has the celebrated “Lady Zetland” whose name is always fresh in the memory of racing men as that of perhaps the very best mare that New Zealand has produced. She finished her racin career in 1896, when she started twice and won both races—the New Zealand Cup and Canterbury Cup. A true farmer likes all the animals that are about his place, and Mr. Gates has a dog named “Darkie,” of which he tells a remarkable story. During harvest time, “Darkie” got built over in a wheat stack, and five weeks afterwards, when the grain was being threshed, the dog was discovered and released from his prison. He had been all that time without food or water and with very little air. Mr. Gates has been chairman of the Tinwald Racing Club for many years. He is chairman of the Tinwald Town Board and the Tinwald Domain Board, and is a Freemason. Mr. Gates was married on the 1st of June, 1898, to a daughter of Mr. Thomas Stone, farmer, of Greenstreet.

Mr. Gates' Pedigree Stock.

Mr. Gates' Pedigree Stock.

Hunt, Joseph, Farmer, Wakanui Road, Ashburton. Mr. Hunt was born in Oxfordshire, England, where he was brought up to farming. He landed at Lyttelton by the ship “Isabella Hercus,” in 1856, and resided at Gollans Bay for two years, during which he worked at the formation of the road from Lyttelton to Sumner, and also at the Christchurch-Sumner road. Mr. Hunt rented a farm at Sumner, from the late Rev. George Cotterill, and there raised one of the first wheat crops grown in that district. From Sumner he went to the Harewood Road, where he had a farm for two years. Mr. Hunt removed to the Ashburton county in 1865, and worked part of Mr. Peter Chalmer's land on the Wakanui beach road. In 1868 he took up 150 acres of agricultural land with a purchasing clause, and has since acquired more. He also rents a considerable area. Mr. Hunt was engaged by the late Mr. G. H. Moore, in 1869, to cut a water-race from the Wakanui river to the creek. It was surveyed by Mr. Sealey, and was one of the first water-races made in Canterbury. Mr. Hunt also put down the first fields of oats and wheat in the Ashburton county. He married before leaving England, and still resides on the farm on the Wakanui Road, with his wife. He has three sons and one daughter.

Mr. and Mrs. J. Hunt.

Mr. and Mrs. J. Hunt.

Hunt, John, Farmer, Wakanui Road, Ashburton. Mr. Hunt is the third son of Mr. page 832 Joseph Hunt, and resides on a farm of 263 acres, part of which is leasehold. He is married, and has two daughters and two sons.

Lagmhor Estate (G. A. M. Buckley, proprietor), Ashburton. This property, originally a pastoral lease from the Crown, was taken up by the McLean Brothers in the fifties, and the area, about 30,000 acres, extended from the Ashburton river to the Hinds river. Eventually it was bought from the Crown at the current values of Crown land. When McLean Brothers divided their properties, Lagmhor was taken over by the late Hon. John McLean, who, about ten years prior to his death—which took place at “Redcastle,” Oamaru, on the 15th of July, 1902—made it over to his nephew, Mr. George McLean Buckley. For the last five years Mr. Buckley has worked the estate on his own account, and has sold about 7000 acres of the land. At present (1903) Lagmhor has an area of nearly 23,000 acres, of which 10,000 acres are poor tussock land, and the balance good to medium agricultural land. About 3000 acres are in cereals, 600 acres in rape, and 1200 acres in turnips. The stock numbers about 31,000 sheep and lambs, thirty head of cattle, and 140 horses.

Mr. G. A. M. Buckley, the Proprietor, is referred to at page 137 of this volume, in the Military Section. He entered into possession of the estate in 1899, and was for some time one of the members of the Ashburton County Council, and of the Upper Ashborton Road Board. Mr. Buckley was married, in 1890, to a daughter of Mr. F. R. Warren, barrister, London, and has a family of three.

Millar, Malcolm, Farmer, “Aberfolye,” Beach Road, Ashburton Mr. Millar was born in Aberfoyle, West Stirlingshire, about twenty-one miles from Stirlingshire, about twenty-one miles from Stirling, in 1827, and was brought up as a shepherd. He came to New Zealand in September, 1855, by the “Mystery,” to Lyttelton, under engagement to Messrs Moore, Lilly and Kermode, as a shepherd, for three years, and he remained with them for seven. Mr. Millar was on the Wakanui station when there was only one house in Ashburton. In 1866 he went in for farming on his own account. He is one of the oldest living residents of Ashburton, and has about 400 acres in the neighbourhood of the town. Mr. Millar keeps sheep and carries on general farming, and has also been supplying the town with milk for more than twenty years. His dairy herd consists of about sixty head of cattle. Mr. Millar has taken a great interest in horses, cattle, and dogs in connection with the Agricultural and Pastoral Society, and sometimes acts as judge in the dog class. He himself has gained prizes at different shows with Ayrshire cattle and draught horses. He was married, in 1861, by Rev. Mr. Fraser, in Christchurch, to Miss Agnes Taylor, a native of Argyleshire, Scotland, who came out to him to be married, and he has nine in his family.

Robertson, George McIntosh, Willow Park, Winchmore, Ashburton. Mr. Robertson was born in Strathdearn, Inverness-shire, Scotland, and passed his early years on his father's farm. In 1868 he went to America by the ship “Ottawa,” of the Allen line, and landed at Quebec, Canada. He went through to the States, where he remained for five years, and then returned to Scotland. He came to New Zealand in 1874, by the ship “Hydaspes,” and landed at Auckland, but came almost immediately to Canterbury. In 1892 he purchased his present farm of 740 acres. The land was then all in its native state, but it is now well cultivate and divided into six paddocks. There is a good dwelling-house at the homestead, and the grounds are planted with many choice trees and shrubs. There are three artificial pons on the property, and in these Mr. Robertson has placed either trout or perch. Mr. Robertson has always taken a warm interest in sporting matters, and has served for many years on the school committee. He was married, in 1878, to Miss McKay, and has four sons and six daughters.

Smith, Hay, Stock Dealer, Ashburton.—Mr. Smith was born in Canterbury. He is the eldest son of Mr. Hay T. Smith, an old colonist of Canterbury, and was educated at Ashburton. He was brought up to stock dealing, and for some years was with Mr. Walter Hartnell, of Rakaia, and then with Messrs Watt and Co., of Templeton, buying and taking charge of all stock bought for the Ashburton district. In 1886 he started in business on his own account. He has been most successful, and puts through more stock than any other dealer in the district; in fact, his business extends all through South Canterbury. Mr. Smith resides at Ashburton, and is a member of the Ashburton Agricultural and Pastoral Association, and of the local racing clubs. He was married in Ashburton, and has three children.

Upton, Thomas Everard, Sheep farmer, Ashburton. Mr. Upton is well known as a breeder of purebred Shropshires, of which he has had at one time about 1200 in the New Zealand Flock Book. He has been a judge at the Leeston, Rangiora, and Timaru shows, and has obtained as much as seventy guineas for a Shropshire ram—the highest sum given in the Colony for a Shropshire He has generally taken a keen interest in sheep breeding. Mr. Upton was born in 1845, at Moreton Say Rectory, Shropshire, and is the eldest son of the late Rev. Robert Upton, who was for fifty-three years incumbent and rector of Moreton. He was educated at Market Drayton Grammar school and by private tutors, and he sailed from England on the 1st of November, 1865, by the “Mermaid,” Captain Rose, for Lyttelton. After his arrival he went as a cadet on the property of Sir Frederick Napier Broome (Messrs Hill and Broome), at Malvern Hills, Canterbury, and was there for two years. He was afterwards for sixteen years manager for the late Sir Cracroft Wilson. At the end of that time he went farming in the Ashburton county, and has ever since been engaged in that industry. Mr. Upton was on the Rakaia Road Board when Sir John Hall and others were members, and he has filled various other public positions. He has been for many years a member of the Ashburton Club, and in 1898 he was elected president, having filled the office of vice-president the year previous. Both Mr. Upton's sons were educated at Christ's College, Christchurch, and his son Robert was captain of the football and cricket teams. His eldest son, Thomas Everard Tichborne Upton, is at present practising as a solicitor at Upton-on-Severn, Worcestershire, England, and his second son who was in the Union Bank at Ashburton, went to the Transvaal war with the Canterbury Troop of Rough Riders, who left Christchurch on the 17th of February, 1900.