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



Takapau (which means i[gap — reason: deleted] Maori, “a mat to lie down on”), is a good farming district on the main line of railway, fifty-seven miles south-west from Napier. It is situated on the Ruataniwha Plain, and is well watered by the Manawatu, Makaretu and Merrigege rivers. Though the Ruahine Mountains, twenty miles distant, are covered with snow nearly all the year round, the climate is warm. The surrounding country was, for many years, held in extensive sheep runs, some of which have since been cut up for closer settlement. There are still, however, several large sheep stations in the district, including “Orua Whara,” the property of Mr. Sidney John-stone, and “Ashcott,” the property of Mr. J. B. A'Deane. A considerable portion is also held by the Maoris. The land is chiefly level, and is suitable for either grazing or cropping, but there is also a considerable amount of rolling and broken country which is best adapted for pasturage. The chief industries are dairying and agriculture, flax and saw-milling. The roads in the district are good, page 529 there is native and imported game in the neighbourhood, and trout fishing may be obtained within a mile of the settlement. A coach runs tri-weekly to Ashley-Clinton and Makaretu from Takapau. The township has churches, a public school, one hotel, an accommodation house, a public library, a large public hall, and various stores. The business of the post and telegraph office and other Government departments is conducted at the railway station.

Ashcott Station is situated in the north-west portion of the Takapau district, and is one of the finest sheep stations in the Hawke's Bay province. It was first taken up in the “fifties” by the late Mr. John A'Deane, after whose birthplace it was named. “Ashcott” was originally about 16,000 acres in extent, but recent sales have reduced the area. The land is highly adapted for both pasturage and agriculture, and is chiefly flat and undulating, with a little hilly country. In the summer months the stock aggregates 18,000 sheep and 800 head of cattle. The property is in a high state of improvement, and shelter is provided by numerous plantations. There is a fine homestead on the estate, a large wool-shed, and a number of well-equipped outbuildings. About twelve men are constantly employed. A number of well-known race horses have been trained at “Ashcott,” including “Flirt,” “Coastguard,” “Beauford,” “Doris,” “Duffer,” “Stanley,” “Pushful,” and “Sleepwell.”

“Ashcott,” the Property of. Mr. J. R. B. A'Deane.

“Ashcott,” the Property of. Mr. J. R. B. A'Deane.

Mr. J. R. Bayly A'Deane, owner of “Ashcott,” is the eldest son of the late Mr. John A'Deane, and was born on “Ashcott” on the 21st of March, 1865. As a lad he went to England, and was educated at Hailebury, and afterwards at Cambridge, where he graduated B.A., in 1886. He then returned to New Zealand to take over the management of “Ashcott,” but soon afterwards went back to the Old Country, and was for two years in a solicitor's office at Furnval's Inn, London. On the death of his father, in 1889, Mr. A'Deane finally returned to the Colony, and has since been engaged in the management of his estate. In his university days at Cambridge he was prominent as an oarsman, cricketer, and footballer, in 1886 went on tour with the University representative football team, and shortly after his final return to the Colony played as a Hawke's Bay representative in cricket. Mr. A'Deane was the principal promoter of the Ruataniwha Polo Team, was for some years deputy master of the Hawke's Bay Hunt Club, and is president of the Takapau Racing Club. He also takes a keen interest in racing matters, and is a successful breeder of racehorses. He married Miss Margaret M. Robertson, daughter of Mr. James Stewart Robertson (late of Kilwinning, Ayrshire, Scotland), in 1900, and has two daughters.

Residence of Mr. J. R. B. A'Deane.

Residence of Mr. J. R. B. A'Deane.

Mr. J. R. B. A'Deane.

Mr. J. R. B. A'Deane.

Belleview Farm (W. E. Downing, proprietor), Takapau. This farm was originally part of the Burnside station, and was acquired by the present proprietor in the year 1898. It consists of 600 acres of excellent grazing land, and carries 1,300 sheep and sixty head of cattle. Many improvements have been effected on the property.

Mr. William Edward Downing, proprietor of “Belleview,” was born in Mechanic's Bay, Auckland, on the 21st of January, 1861, and was educated at private schools. For about eight years he resided at Kaiwaka, Auckland, and was subsequently engaged in farming in the Waikato for about five years. He then removed to Hawke's Bay, where he found employment for some years at general farm work in the Takapau district, before acquiring his present property. Mr. Downing is a member of the local branch of the Farmers' Union.

Brookwood Station comprises 1,350 acres of first-class grazing land. It was first leased from the Maoris, by the late Mr. Thomas Hobson. Messrs Nelson Brothers then acquired the freehold of an extensive stretch of country embracing this area, and when the block was cut up the portion now known as “Brookwood” was bought by Mr. H. H. Russell, from whom it is held under lease by Mr. M. Paulsen. Included in the area is a Maori reserve of about 350 acres. Much of “Brookwood” is of an undulating and hilly nature, but there is also a considerable proportion of good, flat, arable land. Mr. Paulsen has also two freehold farms, one of 680 acres, and the other of 710 acres. The former, which is known as “Waitangi,” adjoins “Brookwood,” and was formerly a part of Messrs Nelson Brothers' property. It is chiefly rolling hills, and suitable for both agricultural and pastoral farming. The latter, a portion of the Burnside station, is flat land, of first-class quality, and embraces about 110 page 530 acres of flax and swamp. An aggregate of 7,000 sheep are annually shorn, and 300 head of cattle are depastured. The out-buildings are up to date in every respect, and eight men are constantly employed.

Mr. Matthias Paulsen, proprietor of Brookwood station, was born in Denmark, on the 24th of November, 1858, was educated at German and Danish schools, and afterwards gained some early experience of farm life in his native country. At sixteen years of age he emigrated to New Zealand, landed at Napier, and was employed for two years at road making, and as a bullock-driver, on the East Coast. He subsequently found employment on the St. Lawrence station, where he remained for eighteen years, latterly as foreman, and, in 1896, resigned this position in order to take up his present property. On leaving “St. Lawrence” he was presented with a valuable marble clock by the employees of the station. Mr. Paulsen is chairman of the Takapau Road Board, and of the Takapau School Committee, and is a member of the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, and the local branch of the Farmers' Union. He is married, and has one son and two daughters. His son, at twelve years of age, passed the sixth standard, five months later won an Education Board scholarship as a pupil of the Dannevirke District High School, and in 1905 carried off a Queen's scholarship.

Bunting, photo.Mr. M. Paulsen.

Bunting, photo.
Mr. M. Paulsen.

Davies, Rees, Sheep-farmer, “Te Ngache,” Takapau. Mr. Davies' farm consists of 552 acres of excellent grazing country. The property is chiefly of an undulating and hilly nature, with about twenty acres of ploughable land. It carries between 1,500 and 1,700 sheep, and about 120 head of cattle. “Te Ngache” (formerly part of the Takapau estate) was for many years held by Messrs Nelson Brothers, and the first portion was purchased by its present proprietor in the year 1895. Mr. Davies was born at Hororata, Canterbury, on the 16th of August, 1869, and is the second son of Mr. Rees Davies, an early Canterbury settler. He was educated at the local public school, and was brought up to farming under his father. In 1892 he removed to Hawke's Bay, and found employment for three years on the Mangawhare station, before taking up his present farm. Mr. Davies is a member of the Takapau Road Board, the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, and the Farmers' Union. He is married, and has two sons and one daughter.

Bunting, photo.Mr. R. Davies.

Bunting, photo.
Mr. R. Davies.

Jackson, William, Farmer, Takapau. Mr. Jackson took up his present property in October, 1904. It was originally a part of the Burnside station, and comprises 700 acres of good level land, a large portion of which is river deposit. The property is highly improved, and is divided into 100 acre paddocks by good sheepproof fences. About 1,000 sheep and twenty-five head of cattle are depastured, and 200 acres are annually laid under cultivation, principally in oats, turnips, and rape. There is a comfortable residence and efficient out-buildings on the property. Mr. Jackson was born at Greytown, Wairarapa, on the 22nd of July, 1860, and is the eldest son of Mr. Thomas Jackson, an old colonist of Kumeroa. His mother was also an old colonist, and one of the first white women born in Wellington. After he was educated, Mr. Jackson applied himself to farming on his father's property, and in 1882 settled near Woodville, will his brothers, and successfully engaged in bush contracting and farming for many years. He subsequently farmed for fourteen years on his own account in the Kumeroa district, whence he removed, in 1904, to his present farm at Takapau. He is a member of the Farmers' Union. Mr. Jackson married the eldest daughter of the late Mr. Thomas Heard, of Christchurch, in 1891, and has one son and three daughters.

Henderson, photo.Mr. W. Jackson.

Henderson, photo.
Mr. W. Jackson.

Janett, Frederick, Farmer, Takapau. Mr. Janett's property consists of 380 acres of good agricultural and grazing land, situated about five miles from Takapau, and was acquired at the Hatuma ballot. The average flock is about 800, but in the summer months as many as 1,400 sheep and lambs are carried; and thirty head of cattle are also depastured. About thirty acres are annually page 531 placed under cultivation, and excellent crops have been obtained. There is a fine plant of British-made agricultural implements, sheep-shearing machines, and a four and a half horse-power Gardener oil engine. There is a fine residence and a number of convenient out-buildings on the property. Mr. Janett was born in Switzerland, in September, 1858, and was educated and brought up to farming in his native country. At sixteen years of age he went to Denmark, and for three and a half years was employed in a large restaurant in Copenhagen. He then emigrated to Australia, worked for about twelve months on a farm in Queensland, and then came to New Zealand. For five years he found employment on a farm in the Waiarapa district, and for fourteen years afterwards was engaged in contracting and farming on his own account. He then sold out, and subsequently settled at Hatuma. He is a member of the local branch of the Farmers' Union. Mr. Janett is married, and has four sons and eight daughters.

Henderson, photo.Mr. F. Janett.

Henderson, photo.
Mr. F. Janett.

Mangapohio” and “Lime Terrace,” in the Takapau and Makaretu districts respectively, are two fine sheep runs, owned and worked in conjunction by Mr. J. J. Connor. The former was once part of the Burnside station, is 987 acres in area, carries 2,000 sheep, over 100 head of cattle, and twenty horses, and has a fine residence. “Lime Terrace” was first taken up by Mr. Connor in the year 1887, when it was principally virgin bush. The work of improving it has been carried on systematically, and the area is now in excellent pastoral condition. It comprises 1,130 acres, and carries an average flock of nearly 3,000 sheep.

Mr. John Joseph Connor, proprietor of “Mangapohio” and “Lime Terrace,” was born on the 12th of August, 1860, in County Kerry, Ireland, where he was educated, and brought up to farming. In 1876 he came to New Zealand, and settled in Hawke's Bay. For some time he was employed in general farm work and contract fencing, chiefly in the Waipawa and Waipukurau districts, and for seven years afterwards managed a farm at Makaretu. In 1887 he took up “Lime Terrace,” and in 1901 he purchased “Mangapohio.” Mr. Connor is a member of the Takapau Road Board, the Farmers' Union, and the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, and was for some years a member of the Takapau School Committee. He married a daughter of Mr. Finlay Morrison, of Makaretu.

Potts, Ambrose, Runholder, Takapau. Mr. Potts conducts a sheep-run of 3,500 acres, in partnership with Mr. William Nelson, of Tomoana. The land is held under Maori lease, is fair pastoral country, and carries about 6,000 sheep and 300 head of cattle. It is highly improved, and the wool-sheds are up-to-date in every particular. Mr. Potts was born at Croydon, Surrey, England, in May, 1852, and came to New Zealand as a lad. He was educated at Christ's College, Christ-church, and afterwards learned farming. For some years subsequently Mr. Potts had charge of various large stations in South Canterbury, chiefly for the late Mr. Michael Studholme, and then removed to Hawke's Bay in the year 1882. For five years he managed a large station at Patea, for Mr. Birch, and for ten years subsequently managed three sheep stations in southern Hawke's Bay, including “Takapau,” for Mr. William Nelson. He took up his present property, in partnership with his former employer, in 1898. Mr. Potts is a member of the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, the Dannevirke Jockey Club, and the local branch of the Farmers' Union, of which he was for some time chairman; he was also for some years a member of the Takapau Road Board.

Bunting, photo.Mr. A. Potts.

Bunting, photo.
Mr. A. Potts.

Taniwha Station is situated about four miles from Takapau, and is composed of 1,883 acres of the Burnside run, and 400 acres of “Ashcott.” The former block was acquired in 1897, and the latter in 1906, and is all freehold property. It is arable country of excellent quality, and is highly adapted for both grazing and agricultural purposes. “Taniwha” carries about 3,600 sheep and 200 head of cattle, and about 150 acres are annually laid down in crops, chiefly turnips and rape. There is a fine homestead on the property.

page 532

Mr. Hector Albert Speedy, proprietor of “Taniwha,” was born at Wainui, on the 8th of July, 1871, and is the fourth son of the late Mr. William Speedy. After receiving his education at public schools and at Wellington College, he returned to his father's farm for two years, and then went to the Wairarapa. Subsequently he was engaged in farming for some time in Canterbury, chiefly in the Ashburton, Rakaia, and Selwyn districts, and then returned to Hawke's Bay. For about four and a half years he was employed on the Pourere and Blackhead stations, afterwards for a few months was employed by the Hawke's Bay Rabbit Board, and then took up a portion of his present property. Mr. Speedy is a member of the Tokapau Road Board, the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, the Farmers' Union, and various racing and sporting clubs. He married Miss Bailey, of Waipukuran, and has three children.

Tasma Farm (J. A. McLeod, proprietor), Takapau. This farm was formerly the homestead portion of the Tasma estate. It embraces nearly six hundred acres of land, and carries about 700 sheep and a few head of cattle. There is also a considerable amount of flax on the property, and a flax-mill, which employs twenty-five persons, is constantly at work there. “Tasma,” named after the novelist of that name, was formerly part of the Burnside station, and was purchased by Mr. A. Seifert in 1903. The block comprised 3,455 acres of grazing country, and was kept intact, under the management of Mr. J. A. McLeod, for nearly three years. During that time it carried a permanent flock of about 4,000 sheep, but in the summer months more than twice that number were depastured. In the year 1906, however, Tasma estate was subdivided, and sold in small blocks.

Mr. James Angus McLeod, proprietor of Tasma Farm, was born and educated in Canterbury, and was employed for many years as a shepherd in the Amuri district. Later on he removed to the North Island, for twelve months managed a flax-mill in the Manawatu district, and in 1903 took up the management of the Tasma estate for his brother-in-law. Mr. A. Seifert. Mr. McLeod is a member of the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, the Waipukurau Jockey Club, and the local branch of the Farmers' Union, and is captain of the Taknpau Golf Club. He is married and has two daughters.

The Tasma Flaxmill, at Takapau, was first established on Mr. Sydney Johnston's station, and was subsequently moved to its present site. There are two fields of flax in connection with the mill, and these are worked alternately. A large quantity of raw material is also bought from neighbouring farms. The plant is a first-class one, and is driven by a twelve horse-power portable engine. Twenty-sis persons are constantly employed, and the average weekly output is about six tons of fibre.

Mr. Walter Seifert, who conducts the Tasma Flaxmill in partnership with Mr. J. A. McLeod, was born at North Loburn, Canterbury, in the year 1880, was educated at public schools, and brought up to farming. At seventeen years of age he began work in a Southland flaxmill, subsequently was employed for a time at flaxmilling in the Rangitikei district, and in 1906 entered into partnership with his brother-in-law, Mr. McLeod, in the Tasma mill. Mr. Seifert is a member of the local golf club. He is married and has one daughter.

Mr. Thomas Hobson, sometime of Takapau, was born on the 29th of November, 1834, in Leicestershire, England, where he was educated and brought up to farming. He emigrated to New Zealand in the ship “Ganges,” in October, 1863, and was engaged for seven years in contracting in Auckland. Mr. Hobson then removed to Hawke's Bay, was employed for a short time on Oakbourne station, at Porangahau, and then settled at Waipawa, where he worked for the late Mr. William Rath bone. Later, he farmed on his own account, and for some years carried on business as a land, stock, and general commission agent. Mr. Hobson then took up land at Ashley-Clinton, but soon afterwards sold out and settled at Takapau, where he acquired about 2,200 acres of Maori leasehold. He died in 1890, leaving a widow, six sons, and one daughter. Mrs. Hobson has since successfully conducted the farm with the assistance of her sons, and has now 1,100 acres, with a flock of 1,750 sheep. Her eldest son is a station manager in the province of Wellington; her second son manages the farm in Takapau, the third is a builder in Wanganui, the fourth and fifth are farming on their own account, and the youngest is a chemist in Wellington. Her only daughter married Mr. Hosking, of Ormondville.

The late Mr. T. Hobson.

The late Mr. T. Hobson.