The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Taranaki, Hawke's Bay & Wellington Provincial Districts]
Curtis, John William, Butcher, Broadway, Stratford. Private Residence, Juliet Street. This business was established many years ago, and was acquired by the present proprietor in the year 1903. The premises consist of a large shop with a verandah, an office, and a small goods room, and there is also a stable. All meat sold in the establishment is killed at the municipal abattoirs. Mr Curtis was born in 1861, in Surrey, England, where he was partly educated. He came to New Zealand at an early age, and for about ten years resided in Napier, where he learned his trade as a butcher, under Mr. Conway. He then removed to Auckland, and was with the well known firm of R. and W. Hellaby for twenty-two years, for fourteen of which he had the management of the firm's Parnell shop. Thence he removed to Stratford to take over his present business. Mr. Curtis was for fourteen years a member of St. Mary's Cathedral choir in Parnell, and is a member of the Holy Trinity church choir in Stratford. He is also a member of the Stratford school committee. In 1891 Mr. Curtis married a daughter of Mr. John Conway, builder, of Tauranga, and has three daughters.
The Stratford Bacon Curing Company, Limited, was established in the year 1898. Directors for 1906: Mr. R. Dingle (chairman), and Messrs O. M. Curtis, S. H. James, N. J. King, R. Cock, J. C. George, and J. B. Connett. Mr. P. F. Ralfe is secretary, and Mr. J. Batcher, curer. The factory is situated on three acres of land on Cloton road. It is a two-storied building in wood, iron, and brick, and has cutting, curing, washing, trimming, and drying departments. The plant includes a water turbine engine of fifty-six horse-power, and a British Linde six-ton refrigerator. The cool chambers can carry 100 pigs per week. The brand is “Shakespeare,” and the goods include both smoked and green cured bacon. The slaughter house is one mile distant from Stratford, on part of a section of 134 acres on East road, and is connected by a tram-line with the factory.
Mr. Pilcher Frederick Ralfe, Secretary of the Stratford Bacon Curing Company, is further referred to as a member of the Stratford Borough Council.
Walsh, Charles Blackmore, Butcher, Stratford. This business was established in the year 1904, and is conducted in a wood and iron building. Mr. Walsh was born in 1864, in Victoria, Australia, where he was educated, came to New Zealand at an early age, and learned his trade in Wellington. He was afterwards for four years employed in Nelson, and then removed to New Plymouth, where he remained for six years. Mr. Walsh settled in Stratford in 1900, and, after working for some time as a journeyman, started in business on his own account. In 1886 he married a daughter of the late Mr. John Ruck, of Wellington. This lady died in 1898, leaving three daughters and two sons. In January, 1901, Mr. Walsh married a daughter of Mr. page 179 James Savage, of Stratford, and two sons have been born of this union.