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EARLY MEMORIES AND AFTER

Written for

my little Lads   Peter   &   Allen

Fred. W. Williams

 
[Period 1854 to 1864 - child]


    The eldest son of Rev. William Leonard Williams, afterwards Archdeacon and later the third Bishop of Waiapu, I was born on October 13th 1854 at Whakato in Poverty Bay, now known as Manutuke, at the Mission Station, then near where the Maori Carved Church afterwards stood.

    In March 1857, my Grandfather Bishop Wm Williams & my father, moved the Mission quarters to land acquired for the purpose at Waerenga-a-hika. Grandfather's house was built close to the present site of the Waerenga-a-hika Native boys School, and Father's house a little further back from the road. Many of the trees and old Hawthorne hedges now there in 1920 were planted while we lived there.

EARLY MEMORIES AND AFTER is transcribed from an exercise book written in the late 1930's by Frederick Wanklyn Williams (1854-1940)

These memories appear to fall into four sections:
1854 to 1864 - child
1865 to 1872 - teen years
1873 - Business, offices held
Sport activities Napier
 
 
 
 
Sorting which 'William'
William Williams Snr. b. 1800, prominent NZ Missionary at Paihia, later East Coast & Napier. Was primarily responsible for written Maori language, Bible, etc. Bishop & FWW's grandfather.

William Leonard Williams b. 1829 is the above's son, & FWW's father, generally known in family as 'Leonard', was also a Bishop & great Maori linguist.

    My earliest recollections are of the two houses above mentioned. When a child I spent most of my time at Grandfather's under the charge of my Aunts.

   During the winter of 1860 my sisters, your Aunts Emmie & Ellie, and I were staying at Grandfather's house and early one morning I heard him calling out "It is snowing. It is snowing." On looking out everything was covered with a thick mantle of white, the snow being several inches deep, such a fall of snow had never been seen on the flat country in Poverty Bay before, nor has there been a fall like it since. We three children were carried by Maories to the schoolmaster's house (then unoccupied). Aunt Maria accompanied us and took charge of us for the day, at our dinner there we had I remember pancakes which had been mixed with snow before cooking. In the afternoon we returned to Grandfather's as we had come.

Aunts: Anna Maria Williams (1839-1929), Lydia Katherine (Kate) Williams (1841-1931), & Marianne Williams (1843-1932) - spinsters. Aunts description (new window)
Emmie: Emily Jane Williams (aged 4), m. Charles Gray.
Ellie: Margaret Ellen Williams (age 2 1/2), m. Christopher Haydon Maclean.

    The Mission Station property was enclosed in fences, and in addition to Wooden houses occupied by Grandfather & Father, and for Schoolmaster & Carpenter, there was a Barn and one or two necessary buildings for school use, and a number of Raupo Whares built Maori fashion in which the Maories lived who were there to receive education at the school, these were all inside the enclosure not far from grandfather's house.

Early Williams Mission House
Click for larger image.

    Close to the house a number of fields were cleared and fenced for grazing cattle and horses that were required, and every year some of the land was ploughed and cultivated to grow wheat and potatoes &c for our food. The Maories did the ploughing, sowing and harvesting, the wheat was reaped and thrashed by hand, the grain being beaten out of the ear on the ground with flails (wooden sticks) hinged together with strips of hide.

    The wheat was ground in a steel mill, which was driven by what is known as a Horse Power, an iron arrangement of cog wheels to which was fastened a wooden beam or pole standing out to one side of it about twelve feet or more, a horse harnessed to the outer end of this walked round in a circle, and thus turned wheels which drove the mill, that is connected to it by an iron rod or shaft level with the ground, something like this:

Sketch of one horse power mill

 

    Our bread was brown, it was made of unsifted flour, only very little of the flour was sifted and that was done by boys shaking it through a fine sieve over a large wooden box. The bread was kneaded in troughs by hand at first, and later a machine was sent from England into which the flour, yeast, water and salt was put, and by turning a handle the whole was properly mixed and kneaded by iron arms working inside it, and after being turned out and allowed to set and rise, the dough was put in tins & baked in a brick oven which had been previously heated by a big fire of wood. My mother often made the bread herself or looked after the Maori men and women who did it, to see that they worked it properly.

 

    The first brick oven was in Grandfather's house, but later another was put up in a separate bakehouse. My father was quite expert in building chimneys and those and the ovens on the place were all either built by him or he directed the Maories how to lay them. They had to make and burn their own bricks & lime. I remember well a kiln for burning lime. A circular hole, 4 to 6 feet diameter was made in the ground 6 to 8ft.deep and on one side an access was cut to the bottom of it by a narrow sloping trench for lighting the fire and giving air. A fire was laid in the bottom with a quantity of dry wood, and the hole then filled up with lumps of limestone mixed with wood and the fire started. The limestone for this was no doubt got from Waihirere.

    To the North of the station about a hundred and fifty yards or so from Grandfather's house was a large Maori Pah enclosed by high palisading 12 or 15 feet high of stout wooden stakes fixed in the ground & securely laced to rails fastened to heavy posts let into the ground at intervals. A number of these posts had tops each carved to represent the figure of a man standing on them, and on one which was a special attraction to us children when walking by, the man had one foot on the post and appeared to be stepping off.

    Not far from this Pah and a little to the west of it very near the site of the present Waerenga-a-hika brick Church there was a large meeting house built in Maori style. A heavy wide wooden ridge pole supported on pillars let into the ground, and from the ridge several heavy rafters, wide slabs two feet or more in width supported at their lower ends on similar slabs set upright and securely fixed in the ground. The spaces between these beams and rafters some six feet or so apart were filled with light wooden rods supporting a lining of reed stalks, some of which were colored black, yellow or red and arranged in patterns, and the whole outside covered with rushes on the roof, and raupo on the sides and ends for protection from the weather. The ridge pole and rafters are painted red and are generally covered with Maori scroll patterns in white. The side slabs and front boards of the roof are frequently carved with grotesque looking figures of men, and scroll work & colored red and inlaid with pieces of Paua shells. The floor of earth, and covered with native woven flax mats. In this meeting house built somewhat in the style I have described and lit with a few windows at each end, our church services were held, the whites seated on chairs or wooden benches & the Maories squatting on the ground, males on one side and females on the other.

'Through Ninety Years, 1826-1916'   is the title of a book by F.W.W. about the Life and Work Among the Maoris in New Zealand: Notes of the Lives of William and William Leonard Williams, First and Third Bishops of Waiapu. The full text is made available online by www.nzetc.org

    A little beyond the Pah to the north I remember as a child finding the New Zealand Calceolaria which grows in shady place - soft roundish leaves and bunches of white bell shaped flowers with light mauve colored spots inside them.

    At the time we lived at Waerenga-a-hika, the whole of the plain or flats in Poverty Bay, with the exception of such small plots as the few white settlers and Maories cultivated for growing food, was unfenced & in the main and covered with scrub, flax, cabbage trees and some areas of White Pine forest, I remember some to the south east of the Station and under the hills. The bush in front of Aunt Emmies (Mrs. Chas Gray's) house at Waiohika is the last piece remaining of these.

    The road from Waerenga-a-hika to the mouth of the river where Gisborne City now stands, then known as Turanganui, was merely a track through the scrub following very much the same course as the present main road, via Makaraka. There was not then on the right side of the river a house of any sort. On the opposite side where the Gisborne Freezing Works now stands Captain Read one of the earliest traders in the District had a store and dwelling and a little way off there were some Maori dwellings and a Native Church.

    I recollect staying several days on one occasion at Captain Reads house, I think with my mother awaiting the arrival of some small vessel which was expected. The only means of crossing the river was in small Maori canoes which had been cut out of the trunks of trees.

 

    When I was about 6 years old and after, I went to the Bay of Islands and stayed for over two years with my Aunt, Mrs. Henry Williams. On one of these trips accompanying my Grandfather to Auckland, we called in at Tauranga on the steamer "Lord Ashley" This is my earliest recollection of traveling by steamer but our voyages were usually made in small sailing vessels and from Auckland to the Bay of Islands I must have travelled thus and there I stayed with Aunt and Uncle Henry Williams at their old house at "Horotutu". Their house was on the bank of a little creek separated by a small rocky point from "Paihia" on the Western side of the Bay of Islands, and where Archdeacon Henry Williams (Uncle Henry's Father) first set up his Mission Station when he came in 1823.

    Beautiful yellow sandy beaches which furnished shells of many sorts were a pleasure and joy to us children. My playfellows there were my second cousins the Davies' & Huttons who lived in separate parts of the old Mission house, near this house were the ruins of an old stone house which we were told had been burnt before completion. Further along the beach towards Horotutu was the old Wooden Church, still standing in which we used to attend services on Sundays. In the gallery of this church was an old organ fitted with a keyboard and a barrel, when there was no one there able to play for the service on the keys in the usual way, a limited number of hymn and other tunes could be played by anyone who turned a small handle at the side which moved the barrel round pins, and arranged on this worked the notes required to produce the various tunes which it was capable of playing for accompanying the hymns. .

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Organ: See image below.

    Close to the point which divided this bay from Horotutu there lived the old boatman (an ex man-o-war man) John Foxe. He had a boat which he kept in a shed just above high water mark. This boat was the means of communication for mails, passengers and goods &c between this side of the bay and the township of Russell or Kororareka, miles off nearer the entrance at which place sailing vessels usually discharged and loaded their cargoes and landed their passengers and mails. Old John Foxe kept an ugly faced bulldog which may not have been necessarily very fierce, but was never the less a source of terror to my timid self and other children when passing his house on our way to and from Paihia and Horotutu. I made many trips across the Bay to and from Russell in John Foxes' boat.

 

    My Great Uncle Henry and his wife, & Uncle Henry's father and Mother, lived at this time at Pakaraka, 12 miles inland from Bay of Islands. Later on, or when on another visit to aunt and Uncle Henry, I, with them, stayed at the house of the old people at Pakaraka while they were waiting for Uncle Henry's house to be built at Pouerua, at the foot of an extinct Volcanic Mountain of the same name about half a mile or so off. Uncle Henry's brother John lived close to their Father's house and my playfellows there were the latter's daughter Aggie (now Mrs. T. S. Williams of Tuparoa) and her brothers. Close to these houses was the old Pakaraka Church on the site where the present church, built at a later date, now stands, and in it I can remember an organ with keyboard and barrel similar to that which I have previously described at Paihia tho' a little smaller, which was used at our Sunday Services. When the new church was built It was furnished with a more modern instrument and the old organ went to Puketona, about half way to the Bay of Islands from Pakaraka, the home of Edward M Williams, uncle Henry's eldest brother, where it remained for several years & when this home was removed to Auckland his son Alfred O. Williams took this organ to Wanganui and later placed it in the Museum there.

    While at Pakaraka my earliest recollection of great Uncle Henry Wms was; one morning I had been given the task of crushing maize with a bronze pestle and mortar, to break it in small pieces for feeding chickens, a very uninteresting occupation for a small boy during which maize grains frequently flew about the floor of the room. The old man came into the kitchen where I was seated on the floor and seeing me at work threw me a sixpenny bit, which I naturally thought a good deal of, as very few if any came my way in those days, shops with means of disposing of such trifles not being accessible, my aunt suggested that I should put it in the Church offertory on Sunday, and much to my chagrin this was the fate of the first sixpence I earned. Another reminiscence of him at a later date was, his seeing me with a small toy sailing boat 12 to 14 Inches long, which someone had given me, he said, "The best place to sail that is in the fire." I suppose he thought that toys of that sort might attract one to a seafaring life, and after his experience in the British Navy during his early life, he was averse to his kin taking to the sea. None of his own or my Grandfather's descendants so far have taken up seafaring life as a profession. I may here say that I afterwards, during my holidays at home from School, I frequently rigged & refitted this little boat as a topsail schooner, fitting it to hoist up and lower the sails, the details of which I had learned from the schooner we travelled in between Auckland & Bay of Islands.

Great Uncle Henry: Paihia Missionary of Treaty fame.
Uncle Henry: Henry Williams, son of the above, but uncle to FWW only by marriage.
John: John William Williams, FWW's 1st cous. once removed. m. Sarah Busby.
Aggie: Agnes Lydia Williams (1855-1940)

Barrel Organ
Barrel Organ referred to, now at Wanganui Museum. This has not, and never has had a keyboard as referred to in text.

   I also visited at one time Puketona, Mr. Edward Williams' home near the dray road into Pakaraka from the Bay and about midway between those places. My playmates there were my second cousins, Uncle Allen M Williams and his brothers, one game we had was running about barefooted in shallow pools of water playing at a duckshooting, most of us being ducks and the sportsman using a toy gun and snapping wax match heads under the hammer of it. The friendship thus began developed in later years when Uncle Allen was constantly my mate and companion in Duck Shooting and Pig hunting in expeditions at Te Aute and elsewhere, and later in trout fishing in Hawke's Bay and at Taupo.

    Our method of travelling between Paihia or Horotutu to Pakaraka was generally on horseback and I can even now call to mind quite distinctly the road between the two places though it is over 50 to 60 years ago since I last visited the Bay of Islands. Leaving Paihia we rode along the two stretches of sandy beach to the mouth of the Waitangi river along which we rode some distance until we came to a place where mangrove trees are growing on mud flats, which are covered with salt water at high tide. Here at half tide you could ford across the mud flat on horseback without wetting your feet, then over a small hill you reach the Waitangi falls, quite a fine sight. All goods and heavy luggage &c was conveyed in boats up the river which was navigable to a place just below the falls and there transferred to bullock drays, the road for them running for some distance over poor flats largely of white pipe clay along the bank of the Waitangi and via Puketona to Pakaraka, and Waimate, another of the old Mission stations.

    A shorter route to Pakaraka available only to horse traffic turned off the dray road some miles below Puketona, then up a spur to the left and over a hill named Tarata where the road ran through Bush. At the foot of the hill on the far side you crossed a stream with steep slippery clay banks, not far from this there used to be ruins of a deserted Maori Kainga or Village where there were numbers of old Peach trees which bore well and in the season you could ride under the trees and gather & eat as much ripe fruit as you wanted, the wild pigs ate quantities of the over ripe peaches which fell from the trees on to the ground; beyond this you crossed a flat covered more or less with Stones of Scoria or Volcanic rock. The land beside road along the Waitangi was sparsely covered with very stunted manuka fern & other shrubs the growth of which improved as you approached the bush on Tarata hill. Beyond this there was fern, scrub and patches of bush until you came to a stream at the lower end of the terrace or flat of Pakaraka, here you entered a road-way fenced on both sides through cleared grass fields until you reached the houses I have before mentioned.

 

    On one of our voyages between Auckland and Poverty Bay, I was travelling with my Father and Aunt Kate on a schooner about 80 tons burden, we put into the Great Barrier off Cape Colville, I think it was Tryphena Harbor we landed at and we dined at the house of a settler there. After dinner I remember we walked along the beach and coming to a place where Cape Gooseberries were growing plentifully near the shore, I filled our hosts pockets with ripe ones I gathered for his children.

    Not long after my return from a visit to the North and Auckland, where we had stayed with Mr & Mrs Kempthorne at their old house in Parnell, I am not sure whether it was the trip above mentioned or a later one, a number of us went for a picnic to Capt Bloomfields near the ? (Capt Bloomfield was the father of Mr Bloomfield who owned the sheep farming property East of Mangataikapua near Whatatutu), and while there a heavy rain storm came on and they had to put us up for the night. I slept in blankets on some shelled maize which covered the floor of a small room to a depth of several inches. A few days after the picnic one of my aunts and I developed an attack of mumps which we had evidently picked up in Auckland. Some members of the Kempthorne family with whom we had previously stayed had also suffered from this complaint.

 

    Another incident that I can recollect of the time when we lived at Waerenga-a-hika was an excursion to the hills to the East of the Station. I rode on the front of my Fathers saddle and the other members of the party, my aunts and & Miss Wood. (afterwards Mrs. Arthur Kempthorne) rode on horseback & we went past or through the white pine Bush I have previously mentioned to the hills behind them covered with bush. We climbed one which was bare of trees at the top & from this point we got a good view of the plain. On our return home in the afternoon Miss Wood came off her horse, falling from her sidesaddle over the off side, fortunately without any serious consequence.

 

    Some years before, this date (July 1863) a new house had been built for Grandfather adjoining his original dwelling, & the old part was used as residential quarters for Native Girls School under the charge of my aunts, and at a later date a new house was built for my Father a short distance away from his original House, and when we moved out the Rev. E.B. Clarke, who came to assist in the Mission work with his wife occupied the old house.

 

    The upper story of Grandfather's new house was only partially finished, and a few rooms were completed, the rest being a large open place unlined and undivided. There were no bannisters round the head of the stair case which was simply guarded by some large wooden case. On one visit Uncle James (of Frimley) paid to Poverty Bay, he went up stairs to get something out of one of these cases and in the dim evening light wishing to get to the opposite side of these boxes & not noticing the staircase well he vaulted over the case and landed several feet below on the halfway landing and slid down the flight of steps below on his back, fortunately beyond a severe shaking and bruising he was not seriously hurt.

 
 
Uncle James: James Nelson Williams (1837-1915).
Frimley Then 3000 acres of prime land in Hastings, (N.Z.). The present Frimley Park is where JNW's homestead and gardens were.

[Teen Years]

    In the early months of 1865 a disturbance and conflict with the Maories known as the Hauhau Rebellion was started. Disaffected Natives from the West Coast came over to the Bay of Plenty where they were joined by a number of the local Maories. They seized the Missionaries at Opotiki, Rev C. S. Volkner was murdered by them, and Rev. T. S. Grace escaped afterwards in a small vessel which called there. In March some of the Hauhau leaders came from Opotiki to Poverty Bay with the object of enducing the Maories there to join them and kill or drive out the Missionaries and other White people. At first the local natives protested strongly that they would have nothing to do with them.

    A large number of them were camped for a time at the Maori settlement close by, and I remember seeing a number of men go through a war dance on the road outside the Mission Station enclosure at Waerenga-a-hika.

    The Hauhau delegates continued to hold meetings with the Maories in different settlements, and the matter was further discussed, my Grandfather, Father and Rev. E.B. Clarke went to several of these meetings to try and counteract the Hauhau influence, and finding that Natives were gradually being wheedled round and talked over and many were inclined to join the rebellion, they decided to take steps to remove all the White people and break up the Mission Station.

    For some time prior to our leaving, all the Missionary families slept every night at Grandfathers house, and some of the Native men who were attending the Mission School & could be trusted kept an armed watch about the house at night as a precaution against a surprise attack. I slept in the open unfinished part of the upper floor, and can remember on the night before we left waking several times and seeing the adults moving about busily engaged In finishing the packing of clothing &c. which we took with us.

 

    On Monday, April 3rd 1865 all the Europeans of the Station left for Turanganui (now Gisborne). Aunt Maria (Miss A.M. Williams) who was somewhat of an invalid was conveyed on a sledge drawn by bullocks and my sisters, brothers and I travelled with her. The rest of the party rode on horseback. My Father and Uncles Samuel & Henry who were there at the time remaining at Turanganui, but all the rest of the party embarked that evening on the Government steamer "St. Kilda" which was then in the roadstead and the next morning we landed at Napier.

    Here we were hospitably taken in by Napier residents. Mother and we children stayed with Mr. and Mrs. J. B. Brathwaite at the old Bank house at the corner of Shakespeare and Clyde roads for a few days. Then the whole of our party took passage in the 'S.S. Ladybird' for Auckland. The morning after leaving Napier we called in at Poverty Bay and there picked up Uncle Henry.

Aunt Maria See notes beside 3rd para. above.

    On our arrival in Auckland my Mother, Miss Wood & I with my brothers Herbert & Alfred took up our abode in Rev Dr Maunsell's house adjoining St Mary's Church in Parnell, where we lived for a few months and I was sent to school with Miss Kinder, sister of Dr Kinder Head Master of Church of England Grammar School Parnell, who held classes for little boys at her brothers' residence. Grandfather, Grandmother, my Aunts & Sisters went on to Bay of Islands, where for a time the school for the Native Girls was carried on, and later on we moved there also.

 .

 
    Early in October 1865 I was sent to school at St. Johns College about 5 miles from Auckland. The first boy I got to know there was Chas. F. Hatley who now lives in Napier, he then, with his Mother, lived with his uncle Mr. Henry McKellar, Collector of Customs at Auckland, whose house was just at the top of Parnell rise. I stayed with them sometimes on short holidays.

    The Headmaster of St. Johns College was Rev. Samuel Blackburne and his assistant was Mr. Joseph Bates, for a number of years Vicar of Davenport, North Shore Auckland. Our drawing master was Mr. J.C.Hoyte, who at first came out one afternoon each week to the College to hold his classes, - but later when his pupils were fewer in number we used to walk in to his house in Parnell to have our lessons. In those days there were no trams or buses running through Remuera. Our school hours from 9a.m. to noon and from 2p.m. to 4p.m. except on Wednesdays and Saturdays when we only had school in the mornings and half-holidays in the afternoons. After tea in the evenings we had to prepare work for next day for an hour or so. We had six weeks holiday in the summer, and three weeks at mid-winter. The half years work was broken by 10 days holiday at Easter and 3 days holiday at Michaelmas, end of September during these short holidays we boarders from a distance remained at school unless we were invited to stay with friends who lived in Auckland which occasionally happened.

 

    On half holidays we generally went for a walk in one direction or another, sometimes to Tamaki river, Mount Wellington, a distinct volcano with a double crater, Purewa Creek, Orakei Basin, which was a bare mud flat when the tide was out, or Kohimarama beaches. At the last place the Melanesian Mission School was then situated, and we could buy from the Melanesian boys clubs, spears, bows & arrows and ornaments &c which had been made by the islanders.

    On one such excursion to Orakei Basin some of us were walking over the mud flats when the tide was low, bare footed, and wading across a water channel a foot or 18 Inches deep when we saw what appeared to be a log of wood floating on the water, this proved to be a large conger eel, which disturbed by our splashing in the water, raised its head and began swimming up stream. We were without sticks or anything to hit it with, but continued following and teasing it so that it would rush at us to the banks and snap it's jaws at us, in one of these rushes it stranded itself at a place where the water was very shallow and one of my companions struck it on the tail with a short bit of wood he had picked up, this stopped it from getting back into the water and we were able to kill it. It was an ugly customer about six inches in diameter & five feet or more in length and it took four of us to carry it home. We thought it was a great prize end had some of it cooked but it proved very tough and almost uneatable.

 

    On fine afternoons in the Summer after school we often went to bathe at the Waiatarua fresh water lake about a mile off where I first learned to swim. At first our bathing place was on North side of the lake but later we cut a track across the swamp through the manuka to the South side and made a new bathing place which was a little nearer to the college than the old one. Mrs Volkner, widow of Rev. C. S. Volkner who was murdered by the Hauhaus at Opotiki, was living in a cottage just opposite the College when I first went there, and I remember being invited to tea with her one day. Col Haultain and his family at that time lived in a portion of the College buildings on the east side of what was known as the Quadrangle & his sons attended the school. We sometimes spent an evening there.

    Compared with schools of the present day St John's College was very poorly fitted with places for recreation and exercise. There was no gymnasium, but during my time there we boys subscribed for and helped to erect horizontal and parallel bars which stood out in the open Quadrangle, a rectangular piece of ground about 100 yards long by 50 wide not quite level. Here we used to play hockey of a sort, our clubs being bent manuka sticks procured from the gully below the College. Cricket was played in a field close by. Tennis was not known in those days and of course there were no courts.

    Going home to the Bay of Islands from school for the Holidays and returning to school I travelled on the topsail Schooner 'Sea Breeze' which used to make the run of 120 miles in 36 hours or more, the longer trip I can remember was four days when we were frequently becalmed. On these trips I got to know well all the leading headlands and Islands along the coast.

 

    Later on my Grandfather & his family moved to Napier and my sisters lived with them and were taught by my Aunts. At first they lived In a house known as "Benmore" at the top of Fitzroy Road, afterwards owned and occupied by the late Mr. J. H. Vautier. They later moved to "Hukarere" house in Clyde Road which was built for Grandfather. My Father & Mother & brothers returned to Poverty Bay for a time & lived in cottage known as Waikahua at mouth of the river where Gisborne now stands. This was situated just behind the Cook's Landing Monument, and was where my brothers Frank & Sydney were born.

    After these moves I used to spend my holidays at Napier with my Grandparents and made several trips to and from Auckland by small steamers S.S. "Star of the South" and S.S."Napier". These vessels were generally loaded from Napier to Auckland with fat cattle in holds, and sheep on deck or sometimes fully loaded with sheep. On one of these trips on S.S. Star of the South when off East Coast a furious Westerly gale blew to pieces one of the sails & as we could not make way against the wind we anchored off Waiapu River about mid-day & as wind dropped early next morning we steamed round East Cape but as wind increased again we anchored in Hick's Bay till following morning. While there we landed the seamen and gathered branches of Karaka trees to feed the cattle on. Livestock was usually landed at Tamaki River near Auckland. On one trip we took a load of sheep to the Thames, the steamer was taken close in shore at high water, the fall in tide at low water was sufficient to leave the vessel high and dry and the sheep were landed by running them down stages over side on to the beach, and the steamer came off at next high tide & proceeded on to Auckland.

 

    At the end of the year 1868 St. John's College was closed as Rev. S. Blackburn gave up the school and went to England with his family, so after the Christmas holidays I attended as a day scholar the Church of England Grammar School in Parnell, then conducted by Dr. John Kinder, boarding for a few months with Mr and Mrs Kempthorne of Parnell, until my Mother, who owing to troubles with the Natives at time of Poverty Bay Massacre, had to leave that district, came to Auckland with my brothers Herbert, Alfred and the twins Frank and Sydney, then infants who had been born at Waikahua, and we lived for a short time at the late Sir Wm Martins house at Tararua on Shore of Auckland harbor. Later we were settled for a few years at a house in Parnell not far from the Grammar School which was rented from a Mrs. Bridgen. This house owing to certain faults in it's construction we always called "Ramshackle". For a time we had as boarders with us my second cousins Joseph H. Williams and E. Heathcote Williams and later on Willie and Tom Williams, I. K. Davis & Tom Barston, we all attended the Church of England Grammar School under Dr. J. Kinder.

 

    My Father still continued his work in Poverty Bay and was only able to pay us occasional visits while we lived in Auckland. Arthur was born in late Sept 1869. My Mother's health failed while we were there and Aunt Kate came to live with us for a time. About June 1872 Mother and brothers went to Napier and lived in house opposite "Taumata" in Clyde Road, now occupied by Mr. Thorpe, Aunt Kate and I packing all our furniture & effects and shipping them.

    At this time Dr. Kinder left the Grammar School & went to St. John's College which was opened again as a Theological College and for advanced students. After the winter holidays I went there again accompanied by Chas. Hetley, Laurence Cottle from the Grammar school, and finally left school in December 1872.

 

    During Jany 1873, I spent part of my time at Te Aute where Allen Williams was then working for Uncle Samuel. One day we had the job of washing a number of sheep in the small lake along the shore of which the Railway line now passes, assisted by Henry Davies, the sheep were driven out on a staging built over the water were tipped in and allowed to swim to shore again through a race. A heavy thunderstorm and rain came on during the afternoon & we found it warmer in the water than out of it, as we were wet through all day. At other times we went about the run riding round sheep & cattle & mustering & drafting. Now and then the dogs would put up a wild cat which was hunted & killed. Occasionally we got some wild pigs near the swamp.

 

 
[Business & Offices held]

    On Feby 1st 1873 I entered the Office of Messrs Kinross & Co., General Merchants at Port Ahuriri as junior. Mr. R. I. Ducan of Messrs Ellison & Duncan had held this position before I came and Mr. Chas. Ellison of the same firm succeeded me as junior a year or so later. I passed through various departments in this office including Shipping and in 1880 was Book-keeper.

 

    On going into Kinross & Co's Office in 1873 I lived for some time with Grandfather at 'Hukarere' occupying a small room 9' x 9' in outbuilding used as wash-house and & buggy shed &c. While there, on occasions when Allen Williams and Willie Davi(e?)s came into town for dances I used to give them a shake down on the floor when the dance was over. Later I had a verandah room at "Taumatua", which house was built for my Father's use. When my Father and Mother moved to 'Te Rau' in Gisborne I went back again to Hukarere where I lived till first married in Sept. 1883, then lived for eight months in a small house in Coote Road until my own house 'Te Rawhiti' was built and which we occupied in May 1884.

 

    When I first went to Port Ahuriri wool was brought In from the country on Bullock drays and horse waggons which loaded back with stores & supplies for storekeepers and stations. The firms then doing business on the Spit, as it was then called, were Kinross & C, Watt Bros., Stuart & Co. and Robjohns & Co. Kinross and Co. in the early 80's became insolvent during the financial crisis brought on by the failure of the City of Glasgow Bank, being somewhat involved in transactions with that institution.

 

    After the failure of Kinross & Co., Dalgety & Co. opened a branch and took up part of the old business. Watt Bros. retired from business & sold out to Mr. A. Wardrop who after continuing for a few years gave up business, he built the premises near the Napier Railway station now occupied by the H.B. Farmers Co-operative Assn. Stuart & Co. retired from business before 1880. Robjohns & Co. became Robjohns Hindmarsh & Co., when Mr I Hindmarsh joined the firm after the death of Mr. H.C. Robjohns the principal of the old firm.

    When I first went to work at the Spit, the site of West Quay & reclaimed land where the Port Railway Station and Stores between it & the water now stands was open water, the only dry land on that side was a low sandy island between Richardson & Co's Offices and where Williams & Kettles No. 5 Store. This was known as Maori Island & the Inner Harbor was what is now known as the "Iron Pot". During the summer we frequently used to bathe there during the lunch hours, using an empty lighter as dressing room. West Quay was made & land reclaimed about _____. And the store at Corner of West Quay & Iron Pot was built before 1880 & occupied by Murray Common & Co. afterwards Murray Roberts & Co. Kinross & Co. had a wool store, now Dalgety's No. 1. Banner & Liddle built a store between it and Williams & Kettles No.1 store, which after Banner & Liddle gave up business was occupied for several years by Williams & Kettles until it was burnt. For many years these were the principal buildings on West Quay side.

I left Kinross & Co's Office on August 31st 1880 after being with them for 71/2 years, and started in business on my own account in September of that year. For a time I occupied a small galvanised Iron Shed which stood on the corner of the street opposite Robjohn Hindmarsh & Co's store which I rented from the late Mr. J.H. Vautier then a Coal Merchant at the spit.

 

    Before opening my premises I made a trip as far as Dunedin, and on my way back to Napier met Mr Wm Nelson who was then or his way from England to start Boiling Down & Meat Canning Works which he built at Tomoana. These were after extended to include Freezing Works which is now the principal business there, and Nelson Bros. Ltd business was the first Agency I secured.

    In _____ I secured a section on West Quay adjoining Dalgety & Co's Office & Store and built a more commodious Store and Office. This building is now Williams & Kettles No. 3 Store.

    In August 1885 I took Mr. Nathaniel Kettle into partnership and until March 1891 the business was known as F.W. Williams & Kettle. We then floated it into a public company under the title of Williams & Kettle Ltd. Mr Kettle and I being Managing Directors, & I was Chairman of the Company until 1918 when owing to a breakdown in health and under Doctors advice I retired from active work as Managing Director & Chairman though I still retain a seat on the Board, Mr Kettle becoming sole Managing Director and Chairman.

 

    In 1883 we joined the late Mr G. E. Richardson and the late Capt John Campbell & Messrs Murray Roberts & Co in building the S.S. "Weka" and purchasing the S.S. "Fairy" and one or two small sailing lighters owned by Messrs Richardson & Campbell, and we traded under the title of Richardson & Co. Later after the purchase of S.S. "Kahu", "Fanny" & other vessels this business was converted into a Limited Company and the fleet further increased. I have taken an active part & interest in the management of this Shipping Company.

    I was elected a member of the Committee of the Hawke's Bay Permanent Building & Investment Society on February 16th 1882 and became Chairman on May 13th 1889 which position I held for over 28 years until October 1917 when I resigned owing to my breakdown in health, though I still retain a seat on the committee.

    I was elected one of the Napier members of the Napier Harbor Board in _____ and was re-elected for succeeding terms of office until _____ when I retired. On the retirement of the late Hon. J.D. Ormond in _____ I was elected Chairman of the Board & continued to hold this position until _____ . In _____ I was again elected a member of this Board and remained a member until _____ when I finally retired.

    On the Hawke's Bay Education Board I was elected a Member in March 1893 and resigned in March 1899.

    In _____ I was elected member of the B oard of Governors of Napier Boys High School and resigned from this position 17 Aug 1916.

Richardson & Co.:   FWW was for 41 years! (1899 to 1940) a Director and for 40 of those years, the Chairman of Directors.

    On April 30th 1902 on the retirement of Mr John McVay I was elected Mayor of Napier, contesting the seat with the late Mr S. Carswell who was defeated by over 180 votes, the following year I was again elected without opposition and in 1904 at the end of my second term of Office I retired.

    I was elected a member of the Vestry of St John's Church Napier & later St. John's Cathedral at the Annual Meeting of Parishioners held in the year 1876, and was again re-elected in 1880 and each year after until this year with the exception of the 1887, 1899 and 1905 years when absent in England when I did not offer my self for re-election.

    In January 1906 I was elected (?) Churchwarden by Rev. F Mayne on his appointment, Churchwarden and held this office till I retired in 1917 or 1918. During the building of the St. John's Cathedral and subsequently for several years, except while away in England in 1887, I was Treasurer for the Cathedral Building Fund.

    From 1873 until I was first a teacher and later for several years Superintendent of the St John's Sunday school.

    I became a member of the Synod of the Diocese of Waiapu in _____ and am still a member of that body. For many years I have been on the standing Committee of this Diocese and on the Waiapu Board of Diocesan Trustees Incorporated and one of the Trustees of the Bishopric Endowment Fund, and also was one of the members for this Diocese on the Board of the Clerical Pension fund, and for a time one of the Trustees of St. John's College. The meetings of these two Bodies are held in Auckland & this necessitated frequent journeys to that city. I represented the Diocese of Waiapu as one of it's Lay Members on the General Synod held in Christchurch in May 1916, was elected again for the 1919 Synod, but resigned before Synod met.

 

    Also in _____ I was elected Trustee of Te Aute College Trust & in _____ became Chairman and held this office until I resigned in _____. After the Hukarere School was burnt in 1904 I drafted the rough sketch from which the plans of the new school in Napier Terrace were prepared by the Architect and supervised the building of it, and after the fire which destroyed the main building of Te Aute College in 1918 I prepared sketch plans on which the temporary Masters homes and buildings for carrying on the school were erected and superintended the erection of these.

    I am one of the original Trustees of the Foster Trust and in _____ l was appointed Trustee of the Nairn Trust & the Makarini Trust. These offices I still hold.

    In _____ I was elected a member of the committee of the Hawke's Bay Agricultural & Pastoral Society and was re-elected year by year. In _____ I was appointed treasurer & in _____ was elected vice president and the following year President. This post I held for _____years.

    On the Committee of the Napier Chamber of Commerce from _____ and President for the years _____. For the years _____ I was one of this Society's delegates to the Annual Agricultural Conference held in Wellington, and was by that body elected to Agricultural Council and appointed President of that body for the year 19___ .

    On the Committees of the Hawke's Bay Acclimitisation Society 1903 - 1918 and The Society for Protection from Cruelty to Animals for several years.

 

    A member of the Hawke's Bay Club Committee from _____to _____ and Chairman of that body for _____ years.

    Elected one of the Trustees of the Hawke's Bay Children's Homes in _____ and Chairman of that body from _____ , took an active part in drawing up the Constitution & the rules & by laws of this Institution & ..........

 

 
[Amusements and Sports]

    Between 1873 and 1880 on Saturday half holidays in _____ frequently played Football on the northern part of Clive Square. Other players at that time were the late A. _ Cotterill, Robt Dobson, Richard Carter, also Chas. Ellison, R. I Duncan & others. And in summer, Cricket, as a member of the Port Ahuriri Cricket Club, a very successful club during it's short existence, I was not a brilliant cricketer.

    When Napier Rowing Club was started I was a member and rowed in races on the old Tutaekuri River where the Club Sheds then were, not far from the bridge on the road to Taradale, & in a regatta on the Ngaruroro River, but I was not a successful oarsman.

    Along with R.I. Duncan and others was part owner a small sailing boat, and later a small yacht which we sailed and boated in on the Inner Harbor, a pastime we were very fond of, and spent many Saturday half holidays at it.

    On Boxing day 1873 members of our family had a boating picnic on the Inner Harbor.

 



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