The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Nelson, Marlborough & Westland Provincial Districts]
Present And Past Members Of Parliament
Present And Past Members Of Parliament.
After the abolition of the provinces the Liberal propaganda conducted by Sir George Grey extended its influence to Marlborough, and one sign of the spreading reaction against the old Conservative party was the defeat of Mr. Seymour by Mr. Dodson, an advanced liberal, who was elected for the Wairau in 1881. At the same election Mr. Eyes stood for Picton, but was beaten by that able lawyer, Mr. E. T. Conolly, afterwards Minister of Justice in two Governments, and later still a Judge of the Supreme Court. In 1884, Mr. Dodson defeated Mr. Joseph Ward, another representative of the old landed aristocracy in Marlborough, who then withdrew from public life. In 1887, Mr. Dodson was once more successful at the polls, and Mr. Conolly, who now gave up politics, was succeeded by Mr. A. P. Seymour, as member for Picton. By 1890, the year of the “great strike,” the Liberal and Labour party had gained so strong a hold upon the district that when Mr. Dodson retired from the Wairau they were able to elect, in opposition to Mr. Seymour, a young and almost unknown politician, Mr. T. L. Buick. In the same year Mr. Charles Houghton Mills, who has been for some years a member of Mr. Seddon's Cabinet, first appeared in Parliament as member for Waimea Sounds district.
It is impossible in this brief sketch of Marlborough's political history to do more than mention the name of many of Marlborough's public men who won honourable reputations for themselves, both in local politics and in the wider field of Parliamentary life. In the Upper House Marlborough is still represented by Captain Baillie, the oldest member of the Legislative Council, and once Superintendent of Marlborough, and by Captain Kenny who has been a prominent figure in Parliamentary history for fully twenty years. These two survivers of the old Conservative regime may help to remind us of the intensity of the struggle that was waged for many years in Marlborough between the reactionary and the progressive political parties. In no other district in the colony were the issues so clearly defined between Conservatism and Liberalism, and in none was the struggle more obstinate and doubtful. But the political history of Marlborough may well be a source of pride to the people of the district, for in the words of the historian of “Old Marlborough,” “as she was served at home by able men she has also sent to the counsels of the colony others who have obtained because they have deserved the respect and confidence of their fellow-members.”
Present Members Of The Legislative Council.
The Hon. William Douglas Hall Baillie was appointed to the Legislative Council in the year 1861. He is further referred to as one of the Superintendents of Marlborough.
Former Members Of The Legislative Council.
Mr. Arthur Penrose Seymour was a member of the Legislative Council from the year 1865 to the year 1872. He is further referred to as a Superintendent of Marlborough.
Mr. J. D. Tetley was appointed to the Legislative Council in the year 1867, and resigned two years later. He then went to the Argentine, where he died many years ago. During his residence in New Zealand, he was a runholder on a large scale, and at one time held the Kekerangu and Starborough stations.
Present Member Of The House Of Representatives.
The Hon. Charles Houghton Mills, Commissioner of Trade and Customs, and Member of the House of Representatives for Wairau, was born in Nelson in the year 1844. His father, the late Mr. Richard Mills, was one of the early pioneers of the colony, and came to Nelson in 1841 in the ship “Lord Auckland.” In the early fifties the family removed to Wellington, when Mr. Mills, senior, was Governor of the Gaol for many years. Mr. Mills was educated at the public schools, and was for four years a pupil teacher in the Te Aro school, Wellington. He was then for some years at sea, and was afterwards engaged in farming and mining, and finally settled at Havelock. He was a member of the Provincial Council, the Pelorus Road Board, the Havelock Town Board, the Picton Hospital and Charitable Aid Board, the Marlborough County Council, and was chairman of the Havelock school committee for many years. For twelve years Mr. Mills was also a member of the Marlborough Land and Education Boards. In the year 1890, he successfully contested the Waimea-Picton seat, and in 1893, when the boundaries were altered, he was returned for Waimea-Sounds. In 1896, the Waimea-Sounds electorate ceased to exist, and Mr. Mills was elected for Wairau. In 1899, he was again elected for Wairau by a majority of 1,376 votes, and was re-elected at the general election of 1902 by a large majority. During the time Mr. Mills has been in Parliament, he has been a member of the Goldfields and Waste Lands Committees, and was for three years chairman of the Public Petitions Committee. In 1893 he was appointed Government Whip, a position which he held until the 29th of October, 1900, establishing a world's record in point of time. Mr. Mills was called to the Seddon Ministry, with the portfolio of Commissioner of Trade and Customs, on the 29th of October, 1904. He is also Minister in charge of the Advances to Settlers Office, the Valuation Department, and the Cook and other Islands Administration. Mr. Mills married a daughter of Mr. John Morrison, in the year 1871.
Former Members Of The House Of Representatives.
Mr. Frederick Aloysius Weld represented Wairau in the first Parliament of New Zealand, in the proceedings of which he took a prominent part, and was regarded as a man of considerable promise. He was associated with Mr. J. E. Fitzgerald in the Executive Council that held office from the 14th of June till the 2nd of August, 1854, and was Minister for Native Affairs in Mr. Stafford's Government. In the year 1860, he was defeated by Mr. W. H. Eyes, by the narrow majority of four votes. Shortly afterwards he was elected member for Cheviot, and held office as Premier from the 24th of November, 1864, to the 16th of October, 1865. Apart from politics, he was well known as a pastoralist, and a member of the firm of Clifford and Weld, owners of Flaxbourne, one of the most notable of the early historic sheep runs of New Zealand. In his later years, he was associated with the colonial branch of the Imperial service, and was successively, Governor of West Australia, Tasmania, and the Straits Settlements. His services in this connection extended from 1869 till 1887, when he retired on a pension; and he had, also, been created a knight of the order of St. Michael and St. George. Sir Frederick Weld died in England, on the 20th of July, 1891. His portrait, and a brief sketch of his life, appear on page 60 of the Wellington volume of this work.
Mr. William Wells was member for Wairau in the House of Representatives from the year 1856 to the year 1858, and subsequently sat as member for the suburbs of Nelson. He is further referred to on Page 33 of this volume.
Mr. William Henry Eyes was elected to the House of Representatives, as member for Wairau, in the year 1860, when he defeated Mr. F. A. Weld, the sitting member, by four votes. He supported the Fox party in the House, and on his vote the Stafford Ministry was overthrown. Mr. Eyes is further referred to as one of the Superintendents of Marlborough.
Dr. Monro was elected unopposed to represent Picton in the House of Representatives, in the year 1860, and in the next session he became Speaker of the House. Subsequently he was returned as member for Cheviot, and was again elected Speaker, a position which he filled until the 13th of September, 1870. In 1866, he was knighted in recognition of his services as Speaker. After twenty-five years of political life, he retired, and lived in page 311 Nelson up to the time of his death. Sir David Monro is further referred to on pages 31 and 32 of this volume, and at page 112 of the Wellington volume of this Cyclopedia. He died on the 15th of February, 1877.
Mr. A. Beauchamp, his son Harold, and grandson Leslie.
Mr. William Adams was elected in the year 1867, to represent Picton in the House of Representatives. He is further referred to as the first Superintendent of Marlborough.
Captain Courtenay William Alymer Thomas Kenny sat for Picton in the House of Representatives from 1868 to 1881. He is further referred to as a member of the Legislative Council, to which he was called on the 15th of May, 1885.
Mr. Arthur Penrose Seymour was a member of the House of Representatives from the year 1872 to the year 1875, and again from 1876 to 1881. He is further referred to as one of the Superintendents of Marlborough.
The late Mr. J. Ward.
Mr. Edward Tennyson Conolly was elected member of the House of Representatives for Picton, in the year 1881, when he defeated Mr. W. H. Eyes by forty-one votes. He was a lawyer by profession, and he had formerly been a member of the Provincial Council. On the 11th of October, 1882, he became Minister of Justice in the Whitaker Ministry, and he also held the same office in conjunction with that of Attorney-General in the Atkinson Ministry, from the 25th of September, 1883, to the 16th of August, 1884, Mr. Conolly represented Picton until 1887, when he retired from political life. He was appointed a Judge of the Supreme Court on the 15th of August, 1889, and resigned on the 9th of September, 1903. Mr. Conolly is further referred to on page 81 of the Wellington, and page 272 of the Auckland, volume of this Cyclopedia.
Mr. Henry Dodson sat for Wairau in the House of Representatives from the year 1882 to the year 1890. He played a conspicuous part in the public life of Marlborough during the earlier years of its history. Mr. Dod-son was a member for some years of the Provincial Council, was four times Mayor of Blenheim, and was a painstaking and useful member of many minor corporations. He was born in England, and was the son of an officer in the Imperial Army. At an early age, Mr. Dodson went to Canada, whence he came to New Zealand. He arrived in Blenheim—then known as the “Beaver”—some time in the fifties, and subsequently founded the brewing establishment that still bears his name. At his death, he left three sons and three daughters.
Mr. Thomas Lindsay Buick , J.P., represented the Wairau electorate in the House of Representatives from the year 1890 to the year 1896, At his first election, he opposed Messrs S. J. Macalister and A. P. Seymour, and was returned by a majority of seventy-seven votes. At that time, he was the youngest candidate who had ever been elected to the House. Mr. Buick is the author of “Old Marlborough.” He is now (1905) senior partner in the firm of Buick and Russell, proprietors of the “Advocate” newspaper, Dannevirke.