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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Otago & Southland Provincial Districts]



Mossburn is the terminus of the Lumsden-Mossburn branch line, which leaves the Invercargill-Kingston railway at Lumsden. The station is sixty-one miles from Invercargill, and eleven miles from Lumsden, and stands at an elevation of 959 feet above the level of the sea. Mossburn settlement is in the Mararoa riding of the county of Wallace, and is on the boundary of the electoral districts of Wakatipu and Wallace. The township itself is in the Wallace electorate. The population, as recorded at the census of 1901, was 176. Mossburn is on the south bank of the Oreti river, and a road extends southward towards the settlement of Nightcaps. The village has an hotel, two stores, a blacksmith's shop and a school. The business of the post office and telephone bureau is conducted at the store of Mr J. F. Dyer, and there is a tri-weekly mail service. page 1014 Monthly services are held by the Anglican church, and a missionary of the Presbyterian church frequently visits the settlers. Services are held in the local public school.

The Mossburn Public School was opened in 1887, and is a wooden building with accommodation for about forty children. The school grounds are five acres in extent, and contain an orchard and garden, and a teacher's residence with three rooms and a porch.

Mrs Christina Wraytt , Teacher-in-charge of the Mossburn public school, is the wife of Mr Josiah Alvey Wraytt, farmer, of Balfour and Garston. She was born at Bonar Bridge, Sutherlandshire, Scotland, her father, Mr George Munro, being a member of that branch
Mrs C. Wraytt.

Mrs C. Wraytt.

of the Foulis family, which settled at Swordale, in Creich. Mr Munro came to New Zealand in 1857, and settled in the Clutha district, his family following in 1886, by the ship “William Davie.” Mrs Wraytt, who attended the Dunedin Training College for some time, holds an E3 certificate, and has had a lengthy experience as a teacher. She had charge of a private school for sixty-eight scholars in the Oamaru district for about two years; and the various public schools of which she has had charge, and her length of service in each are: Waiareka, two years; Teaneraki, two years; Alberton and Kingston, each two years; Garston, four years; Fernhill, five years, and Longridge North, three years. Mrs Wraytt took charge of Mossburn, in 1893, and is now assisted by her daughter, Miss Alice Wyratt. Her son, Mr George A. Wraytt, is fourth engineer on the “Star of Ireland,” and had previously served seven years in large engineering yards on the Clyde, Scotland.
Hughes, Daniel Francis , Blacksmith, Farrier, Wheelwright, and Storekeeper, Mossburn. Mr. Hughes was born in 1852 in Galway, Ireland, and was educated in that country. He is the seventh son of Mr. John Hughes, who was a farmer and blacksmith, and with whom he learned his trade. Early in the seventies he left Ireland for Auckland in the ship “Dilharree,” and worked at his trade for some years in various parts of New Zealand. He moved, in 1884, to Mossburn, where he has since carried on business.

Dyer, Frederick James , Storekeeper, Mossburn. Mr. Dyer is the second son of Mr. W. J. Dyer, of Milton, Otago. He was born in Sydney in 1857, arrived in New Zealand with his mother at a very early age and was educated at Tokomairiro (Milton), and afterwards was engaged as a storeman for a number of years. He commenced his business at Mossburn in 1882, and his connection now extends from Mossburn to Lakes Te Anau and Manapouri. Mr. Dyer acts as postmaster and telephone officer; he also engages in sheep farming, on a small leasehold run between Centre Hill and Mossburn, and keeps about 1500 crossbreds.

Mr. F. J. Dyer.

Mr. F. J. Dyer.

Chartres, William , Farmer, Murray Creek Farm, Mossburn. Mr Chartres' farm is opposite the Murray Creek siding, on the Mossburn line. It consists of 860 acres, on which he conducts mixed farming. Wheat, barley and oats are grown, but sheepfarming is the principal industry. Mr Chartres was born in Berwickshire, Scotland, in 1853, and brought up to farming. He came to New Zealand in 1875, engaged in general farm work for a couple of years, and then started contracting and waggoning, which he carried on until 1899. Murray Creek Farm was taken up by him in 1886, and he has since brought it into full cultivation. In 1879, he married a daughter of the late Mr McIntosh, of Glen Urquhart, Inverness-shire, and has three sons, who are engaged in agricultural and pastoral pursuits.

Roy, Robert , Farmer, “Springfield,” Mossburn. Mr Roy was born in Banfishire, Scotland, in 1858, and was brought up to farm work. He came to Port Chalmers, in 1879, by the ship “Nelson,” and followed general farm work for about three years, but afterwards became a contractor. About 1887, he bought “Springfield,” which consists of 314 acres, and he subsequently added another freehold farm of 460 acres, situated about half a mile from his homestead. The first of these properties was in its natural state when taken up, the second in an advanced state of improvement, but practically all Mr Roy's land is now under cultivation. Mr Roy was married, in 1888, to a daughter of Mr Adam Gilchrist, farmer, Morayshire, Scotland.