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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts]

Dr. Edward Larwill Humphries

Dr. Edward Larwill Humphries was an old colonist, who in the days of the Provincial Government, frequently performed the duties of Acting Superintendent, and was Speaker of the Provincial Council for many years. He was born in the year 1816, in Cornwall, England, where he was educated, and subsequently became a member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. Dr. Humphries practised in London at the time of the cholera epidemic of 1848, but, in 1849, owing to failing health, he came to New Zealand as surgeon on the ship “Mary.” He returned Home by another vessel, and brought out his family by the ship “Sir Edward Paget,” which landed them at New Plymouth in February, 1851. Dr. Humphries settled on land near New Plymouth, where the family resided for some time, but owing to the threats of the Maoris, who danced a war dance in front of Dr. Humphries' house, he and his family were compelled to seek shelter in the township. The house in which the family lived was afterwards occupied by Commodore Seymour and the officers of H.M.S. “Niger.” During the Maori war Dr. Humphries was an army surgeon. He afterwards became a general merchant in New Plymouth, and conducted business on his own account until the year 1863, when he was joined by his son, Mr. William Humphries. Dr. Humphries married a daughter of the late Mr. William Dixon, an officer of the 44th Regiment, in 1840. He died in the year 1869, leaving four sons and five daughters.