Elizabeth Ann (nee Wyeth) Chamberlain / McLeod
Elizabeth Ann Wyeth was born in the Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand on
17 September 1856 the 4th daughter, 9th child of Robert and Jane Wyeth.
On 23 July 1876 at the age 19 Elizabeth married Samuel Edinborough
Samuel was born in Wellington on 8 April 1849 the youngest son of Sussannah Catherine (nee
Bull) and Thomas Chamberlain
Samuel was born in Northland, Wellington, New Zealand where his family had a dairy farm.
In 1854 Samuel's father had taken part in the first ballot for sections on the Upper Plain, Masterton under the "Small farms Settlement Scheme"
and had been successful obtaining sections for himself and his 5 sons.
Chamberlain Road in Masterton now passes through the land that was Samuel's property. Some acres of this land remain in the family.
After the 1855 earthquake in Wellington the older Chamberlain boys moved to Upper Plains and built a house for the family which they called
'The Oaks' in what is now Edith Street, Masterton.
The rest of the family followed in 1858 when the dairy farm had been sold. Samuel's father died just one year later in
Elizabeth and Samuel later moved to Miki Miki some 9 miles out of Masterton and farmed a property there.
Their first two children Robert and Jane were both born there. Robert
Thomas Chamberlain was born on 29 September 1877 and Ellen Jane
(Nellie) Chamberlain on 13 June 1879.
When Robert turned two both he and Jane contracted diphtheria. In both cases it proved fatal, Nellie (Jane) dying on 5 November and Robert 22 days later
on 27 November 1879. Jane was less than 5 months old. The children were buried in Masterton Cemetery in the
same plot as their Grandmother Jane, (Elizabeth's mother).
Their father, Samuel and their grandfather Robert were also buried in this plot when they died some years later.
The distance from Miki Miki to town had proved to be a long and dangerous trip in times of
emergency, when Elizabeth was expecting their third child Samuel moved her into Masterton to stay with his mother at 'the Oaks'.
It was in this house that their third child,
Lizzie Chamberlain was
born on 7 October 1881.
Their fourth child May Margaret Sussannah
Chamberlain was born on 2 June 1883.
Samuel Chamberlain died on 1 March 1884,
while visiting the Chamberlain home "Rosswood," in Kibblewhite St Masterton his appendix ruptured which proved fatal.
He is buried in Archer Street Cemetery in the same plot as his two eldest children.
Sussannah and Thomas Chamberlain
Thomas Camberlain was born on 10 June 1806 the
son of Thomas and Elizabeth (nee Edinborough) Chamberlain. Thomas was married in
Eydon, Northamptonshire, England in 17 October 1931 to Sussannah Catherine Bull.
Sussannah was born on 7 February 1809 in Eydon,( some sources have her birth
as 12 February.)
Sussannah and her sisters had kept a school and Thomas' family had felt
he was marrying beneath him. Sussannah
was born on 7 February 1809
The Chamberlains were leasing land at Daventry from Sir Chas Knightly in 1841
he told them that he wanted their land for cropping. After alot of pressure they agreed to a price for one crop, the land
to revert to them after the crop was harvested. He planted a crop of acorns. They
had effectively lost their land and so had to leave to New Zealand.
Sussannah and Thomas came to New Zealand in the ship 'London'
arriving on 2 May 1842 with three children, their youngest Edwin had died on
the way out and was buried at sea.
Thomas died on 5 January 1859, aged 52, of a heart attack, just a year
after moving his family to Masterton. Sussannah
died many years later on 1 January 1891 age 82 she is buried in Archer Street
Cemetery, Masterton. Their children were:-
|Born in Daventry
William Edinborough Chamberlain
Married Elizabeth Jemima Kibblewhite
Sarah Ann Chamberlain
died 26/2/1873 aged 38
Married Brown Hunt.
Giles Edinborough Chamberlain
died Circa 1930
Married Penelope Jane dau of Joseph Whatton.
Edwin Edinborough Chamberlain
Died at sea on way to New Zealand
Born Tinakori Wellington
Edmund Edinborough Chamberlain
Married Catherine(Kitty) McKenzie
Born Northland Wellington
Thomas Edinborough Chamberlain
Married Catherine McLachlan
Samuel Edinborough Chamberlain
Sussanna Edinborough Chamberlain
Died as an infant
Buried at Karori.
After Samuel's death Elizabeth took the two girls and moved into a small house on Samuel's Upper Plains property, through part of which Chamberlain Road had been formed.
It was from here that Lizzie started school being taken by her Chamberlain cousins to
The Chamberlain Road house was too isolated for Elizabeth and her girls so the family arranged another house for her in Cole Street.
Elizabeth was taking in washing and boarders to get by so life for her at the
time was difficult but not uncommon in those times.
Lizzie transferred to a small school in Victoria
Street for a short time and then to the Central School.
The Head Master there was Mr Jackson who when Lizzie's son Tim was attending Masterton District High was still there as Headmaster of both the Central School and the
On 24 June 1891 in Masterton Elizabeth now aged 34, a widow with two young daughters married
Alexander (Sandy) McLeod.
Sandy, the eldest son of Catherine (nee
Sinclair) and Angus McLeod, was born on 23 June 1852.
Catherine (nee Sinclair) and Angus McLeod
Angus McLeod was born in Scotland born in 1825. Angus married Catherine Sinclair.
Catherine was born in 1830, New Zealand. Angus and Catherine came to New
Zealand on the ship 'Gleaner' which sailed from Gravesend on July 29, with a
full cargo and over 200 emigrants for Wellington, despatched by Messrs.
Morrison, Powell, and Co., under arrangement with the Provincial Government. Angus and Catherine’s children
Born in Scotland
Alexander (Sandy) McLeod was
born on 23 Jun 1852, died on 14 Feb 1929 in Masterton, New Zealand at age 76,
and was buried in Masterton, New Zealand. Alex married Elizabeth Ann Chamberlain
Archibald McLeod was born on 1 Sep 1854 and died in 1939 at age 85.
Born in New Zealand
Margaret Rachel Ann McLeod was born on 12 Jan 1859, died on 12 Apr 1942 in Masterton, New Zealand at age
83, and was buried in Masterton, New Zealand. Margaret married Thomas Wyeth.
Angus McLeod I have no details of Angus.
Catherine McLeod was born in 1865 and died on 26 Jan 1924 at age 59. Catherine married Frederick
Margaret died in Masterton on 30 Apr 1867 at age 37. Angus lived for a further 35
plus years dying on 8 Sep 1904 at age
79 also in Masterton . They are both buried in Archer Street Cemetery Masterton.
" They steered their course to the same quiet shore, not parted long and
now to part no more"
Sandy was 15 when his mother died, Archibald was 12, Margaret 8 and Catherine
2. Sandy did not get to finish his education, he became the replacement mother and
also worked on the farm. Noreen told her daughter Clare how he used
to sew his sisters dresses. No mean feat when you consider what they used
to wear, and he being about 12 years old at the time. As the younger ones grew up and left home he developed the Mt Bruce block
into a mill. He used to go into Masterton to do shopping and would ask all his
mill workers if there was anything they wanted him to collect in town. They used
to ask for all sorts but he 'never' wrote a list and he 'never' got their orders
wrong. He had an amazing memory. Not bad for a boy not schooled and self taught.
It wasn't until he was in his early 40's that he met and married Elizabeth.
Alex (Sandy) was a very good man.
When Elizabeth and Alex married I was told Alex always included her in business
making decisions, so they worked as a team. Alex also had a block of land for
milling on the road between Gisborne and Opotiki. He used to sail up there to
oversee what was going on. A friend of mine (part Maori) told me Alex is still
known of in Opotiki and information about him is in the museum there. He
had a good relationship with local Maori. At one stage he was keen to live up at
that block but because it was against Elizabeth's wishes that never
L to R - Ivy, Alexander, May, Douglas, Elizabeth, and Lizzie
Elizabeth and Alex had two children Ivy and Douglas.
Catherine McLeod was born on 21 June 1892. They were living at Mt Bruce at
the time which is 10 miles from town and a good buggy ride. When Ivy was a
very young girl she became very ill and a doctor was sent for. It was said later
when the doctor called on a neighbour that he didn't know if he had done the
McLeod's a favour because he obviously knew if Ivy lived she would never be the
same again. This was true Ivy suffered
badly with convulsions as a child and as a result was to an extent retarded.
Ivy lived with her parents until she
died of TB on 26 Feb 1925 aged 32. "In loving memory of Ivy Catherine
bloved daughter of alex and Elizabeth McLeod died 26 Feb 1925.
"Until the day break and shadows flee away. Sheltered and safe from Sorrow."
Douglas McLeod was born on 26 August 1896.
Around this time Sandy was the owner of a Steam Car. Photo
is Grandpa (Alexander) McLeod driving Uncle Bert Dawson and Aunty May. Another
Photo of the Steam Car. When the boys went off to war and the train was pulling out Alex would hand the
boys a package each as they went. In it were goodies for them and he did this so
they had no time to thank him. My mother also told me that in the local paper
there would be an acknowledgement's of a gift of some dollars donated and a
thank you went out. She said the person donating was Alex but nobody knew.
He believed in not telling the left hand what the right was doing.
In 1916 Elizabeth was a beneficiary, along with her sisters and brother Thomas, in the estate of her eldest brother George.
Elizabeth died on 18 December 1921 aged 65 and Sandy on 14 February 1929 aged 76.
They are both buried in the McLeod family plot in Masterton Cemetery.
"In loving memory of Elizabeth beloved wife of Alexander
McLeod died 18 Dec 1921 aged 65'. Alexander died 14 feb 1929 aged 76
" Ever loved and remembered."
Lizzie was born in her Grandmothers home in Masterton on 7 October 1880 the 2nd
Daughter 3rd child of Elizabeth and
Lizzie's youth would have been spent on the family farm at Miki Miki some 9 miles out of
Masterton, or at the homes of her Grandparents in Masterton.
Shortly before her death in 1962 Lizzie had described her grandmother
Chamberlain's home as being surrounded by old fashioned gardens, trees and
birds. With paths and an old fashion
pump at the side. By this time, 'the
Oaks,' having served for some years as a hayshed, was only the ruins of the once
pretty cottage that had been her birthplace. The remains were finally demolished in 1970.
On 24 April 1906 Lizzie married William Tankersley. William
was born on 26 August 1876 the son of Richard
Theophylus and Maria (nee Prentice)
From 1910 till 1921 Lizzie and William managed "Dunvegan" the
McLeod estate at Mount Bruce
Lizzie and William led active lives both in Masterton and after 1921 in the Hawkes Bay
where they had purchased "Glenside."
Lizzie was always keen to lend a hand where she could and was delighted
with the aims of the Country Woman's Institute which she saw as a wonderful help
to country women she also had an active involvement in the Woman's division of
a 243 hectare property off Kereru Rd, about 2 miles above the Maraekakaho
settlement in the
Richard Theophylus Tankersley
Born 18 August 1847 the son of Thomas William and
Sarah (nee Draper) Tankersley and born in Wellington, he was 10
years of age when the family moved to Masterton after the 1855 earthquake. Richard married Maria
Prentice who was born on 20 March 1853.
Richard served for some years as a
Lieutenant in the Masterton Militia Force, thus qualifying for a Volunteer
Grant - Land or Script for 60 acres, or £30 in cash for so many years
service. He was 22 years of age
when he took over about 200 acres on the Te Mara in the Kiriwhakapapa area.
The block was still covered with bush,
through which Richard had to cut a track to get timber to the site where the
house was to be built. The name 'Forest Home" was indeed appropriate. Some of the larger trees were sold to
McLeod Sawrniller, whose tram track extended some 5 miles from the mill
site near the Ruamahunga River into the Kiriwhakapapa Valley.
Breaking in virgin land was hard work
without the mechanised assistance available today. Diary notes by Richard at
this time frequently recorded the labours of each day as follows –
“Grubbing sorrel .... burning sorrel.
Forest Home property was not an easy proposition for one whom, from a
relatively young age, was crippled with rheumatism.
Fortunately the more difficult tasks were shared by Stephen, Will and
Roy. Girls were limited to household chores in those days.
Richard was the first chairman of the
Miki Miki School Committee. Roy and Eva were first day pupils in 1897.
Iris followed 10 years later.
In 1914, at 67 years, Richard and
Maria retired to 12 Johnstone Street, Masterton, where Richard - on walking
sticks and later crutches - cared for his orchard until his rheumatism
prevented him from moving out of the house.
Richard and Maria were together for over 50 years.
This photo was taken at their Golden Wedding.
Richard became more and more paralysed, and was confined to his bed for
several months prior to his death 23rd March 1929 aged 81. Maria
lived at No. 12 until her death 26th April 1939, at the age of 86 years.
Richard, his parents,
and Maria are buried in adjacent plots in Archer Street Cemetery Masterton
Richard and Maria's children were:
Stephen, born 13/2/1875-
died1953 Biog at AT 1953 1/61;
born 29/4/1878 died 1937 not married
born 30/9/1880 died 31/3/1954
born 13/5/1883 died 29/5/1962, married Alice 2nd child of Thomas and Margaret Wyeth.
born 19/3/1885 died 2/9/1963, married WP Cooke.
Iris; born 15/10/1895 died 2/8/1965 not married
Sarah, Iris and Eva are buried in the same plot in Archer Street Cemetery Masterton
William's death on 23 August 1923 Lizzie's son Tim left school and took over the
management of the family farm. When
Tim married Lizzie and her youngest son Bob moved back to Masterton into a home
built on the land that had been part of her father's original "Small Farms
Settlement" now in Upper Plains Road Masterton, not a quarter of a mile
from the remains of the home of her Grandmother in which she had been born.
Helen at this time was away at Napier Girls High School.
When it looked likely that Bob would be called up for active service,
Helen got a teaching job within commuting distance of home and returned to look
after her mother, a task she continued until Lizzie died in 15 July 1962 at her
home in Upper Plains Road. Helen continued to live in the home for many years
until her death on 5 Feb 2004. Helen is buried in Archer Street cemetery,
William Edinborough (Tim) Tankersley
Tim was born at Nurse Spellman's Nursing
home in Masterton on 30 June 1907. Tim
attended Wairarapa District High School until he was 16 when due to the death of
his father he had to take over running "Glenside," the family farm.
This was in 1923.
He was married in 1935 to Winnifred
Audrey Reynolds. Winifred was born on 19 February 1906 the daughter
of Ernest George and Elsie Myra (nee Lyall) Reynolds
Tim had an extensive workshop, and many a time people round the district had called
on him for help when they had mechanical problems.
Tim was involved in the construction of the Maraekakaho School baths, the Mangatahi
School tennis courts, and extensions and renovations to the Maraekakaho Hall and
various other local amenities.
Tim was an advisory member of the Young Farmers club and organised ploughing and
shearing competitions. He was a keen
member of the Poporangi Rifle club and the Maraekakaho Minature Rifle Club and
was a member of a local team that won a Hawkes Bay rifleshooting competition.
Tim also played indoor bowls.
Up until his death on Sunday 27 September 1987, at age 80, Tim was an active farmer
and still drove around the farm in his diesel truck each day feeding the Turkeys
and cattle. It was said at the time
of his death that Tim was the last of his age group to farm in the area. Wyn had
died on 1 September 1987 just under four weeks before Tim.
Tim and Wyn had four children.
At the time of Tim's death Robert was
leasing and farming part of "Glenside"
Helen was born at Mt Bruce on "Dunvegan" which her father was
managing at the time, on 22 June 1911. Helen
was 10 when her family moved to Glenside and Helen attended Maraekakaho Primary
school for standard 6. From
Maraekakaho Helen went to Napier Girls High and then to Teachers College in
Wellington. Unfortunately the
Government decided to close Wellington and Dunedin teachers colleges at the end
of Helen's first year so she had to transfer to Auckland to complete her
training. Her PA year was spent at
Havelock North followed by two temporary assignments each of 1 year duration at
out of Dannevirke), and Woodville.
Helen's first permanent position was a 3 year stint at Turakina, out of
was during Helen's time at Turakina that War broke out and Helen's younger
brother Bob asked her to try to get a position in Masterton so that she could
look after mother while he was away. Helen
found a position at Te Ore Ore which
enabled her to move home to 45 Upper Plains Road, she spent the next 8 years
teaching at Te Ore Ore. From Te Ore
Ore Helen was asked to take on the Special Class at Masterton Central a task
which she undertook for 6 years. In
1955 a position at Matahiwi, 6 miles out of Masterton, well within commuting
distance from Upper Plains Road became vacant so Helen moved to another school
this time for 16 years until she retired in 1971.It was during the time at Matahiwi that Helen's Mother died.
Helen still lives at 45 Upper Plains Rd Masterton.
Douglas Robert (Bob) Tankersley
Bob was born at Nurse Spellman's Nursing Home in Masterton on 2 August 1913.
The journey in from Mt Bruce by buggy and pair had been a long one and
Bob was nearly born on the doorstep. Bob
had a difficult time making it into the world, only 4 pounds in weight at birth
he was always small but wiry. Bob
attended school at Maraekakaho primary until standard 7.
After Tim took over Glenside Bob moved into Masterton with his mother.
Prior to the Second World War Bob had a job gardening in Masterton and had attended a
course in motor mechanics. It was
this course that enabled Bob to get into the Engineers for his term of
active service. Bob was overseas for
four years. When he returned, he joined the Forest Service and was in time made
foreman; this involved a deal of
travelling as the service used Bob in setting up new forestry operations.
When he got engaged Bob did not want to continue being moved around and
so left the service and got a job in a local garage.
Bob was married in 1950 to Nancy
Ellen (Nan) Matthews. Nan was born on 15 January 1926 the daughter
of Leonard John and Ellen Jessie (nee Colquhoun) Matthews. Bob and Nan built a house
in Chamberlain Road Masterton where they lived until after Gavin was born.
They then moved to Nan's parent's property in Opaki
and started a poultry business. Their second child
Gay was born during this time. When
the old Tankersley farm, "Forest Home", behind Miki Miki school came on the market they purchased it.
Later they moved to Mount Bruce, when
Gavin married they built another house on the property for him and his wife.
It was here that Bob died on 12 June 1982.
Nancy now lives in her own
home on her sons property.
May Margaret Susannah Chamberlain
was born in the Wairarapa on 2 June 1883
the 3rd daughter 4th child of Elizabeth and Samuel Chamberlain.
May married Robert Reese Dawson. Robert
was born in 1887 the son of Joseph and Anne (nee Reese) Dawson.
Robert was brought up in the Pahiatua area and started work with his father
who was a bridge builder and at one time a County Engineer in Wanganui.
Around 1913 Robert had a carrying business between Raetihi and Ohahuni. Later
they moved to Wanganui.
Joseph and Anne (nee Reese)
Joseph was born in Tasmania in 1843, and followed the occupation of a
farmer. He came to New Zealand in 1869, and at the age of twenty-six
entered as an apprentice to the carpentering trade with the late Mr. D.
Reese. Before he had served half his time he became foreman, and carried
out many of the large railway station buildings and sheds on the
Southbridge and Ashburton lines. Within a few years he became architect
and contractor, designing and constructing many of the buildings in East
Christchurch, including Ward and Co.'s brewery buildings. After this he
removed to Greytown in the North Island, but finally settled in
Masterton, where he tendered for some of the most important works and
bridges, and carried out all his undertakings to the satisfaction of
those concerned. In 1889 he removed to Pahiatua, where he now resides in
a very comfortable two-story house in the main street. He is very
popular in the district. In public affairs he was chairman of the
Pahiatua Town Board for two terms, and was also a member of the Borough
Council. He is a member of the Masterton Licensing Committee, and of the
Pahiatua Lodge of Freemasons. In his younger days he was for some years
champion sculler of New Zealand, and was never beaten until he lowered
his colours to Hearn at Kaipoi. Joseph married Anne Reese in 1875,
their children were:
Dawson, born Abt 1879, New Zealand
Dalziel Dawson, born Abt 1881, New Zealand
Jean Dawson, born Abt 1884, New Zealand
Dawson, born 1885, New Zealand, died 1885, New
Reese Dawson, born Abt 1887, New Zealand
Dawson, born Abt 1889, New Zealand
Dalziel Dawson, born 13 Feb 1893, Pahiatua,
Manawatu-Wanganui, New Zealand, died 10 Aug 1975, Rotorua,
Bay of Plenty, New Zealand
Joseph died in 1923 aged 79 years.
Alexander Joseph Dawson
Alexander was born in 1911.
He did not marry and died aged 25 as a result of diabetes from which he
had suffered from age 16.
Reese was born on 2 September 1913. His early
childhood was spent in Raetihi where his father had a carrying business between
Raetihi and Ohahuni. They moved to Wanganui in time for Reese to attend the
Technical High School there. Reese was very keen on sport to his father's joy.
He played rugby for the school teams and did well with his boxing, spending all
his spare time practicing with the punch ball. After leaving school he had a
number of jobs including a period with the Public Works Department on the West
Coast of the South Island where he met Freda May Connor, they were married in
1938. Things didn't work out and they parted and she went home to her family in
Wellington. Reese moved home to Masterton. Then World War II, Reese was away for
four years. When he returned after the War he married Noreen
Elizabeth McLeod daughter of his mother's
half-brother Douglas McLeod. Reese and Noreen's first child was named Stanley
Lorimer Dawson after a close friend who had been killed in the War. Reese
and Noreen had 6 children. Reese
died on 31 August 1991.
Elizabeth Anne Dawson
Bet was born in 9 July 1915.
She married Alexander Watt Brown and had
one daughter. Sandy was the owner of a
timber yard in Harrison Street Masterton. Elizabeth's daughter was just 9 months
old when Sandy died. They moved to Caius Ave, Gonville for several years,
leaving a manager to run the timber yard.
Bet was remarried in 1948 to Robert Johnston Gordon.
Robert was born on 25 Dec 1908, Elizabeth and he had two sons.
Robert died in 1983 and Bet on 17 August 1986.
Douglas was born on 26 August 1896 the youngest son of Elizabeth and Alexander
(Sandy) McLeod. Douglas was a healthy lad and the
laird of the family and terribly spoilt by all accounts. His half sisters May
and Lizzy adored and spoilt him also. He went away to the WWI just newly married
to Dorothy White. He met her in Masterton. When Alex was ill he was nursed by
Dorothy's sister who was a nurse at the Hospital in Cole Street (still there and
is a rest home now). Douglas was released from the war in England and
his father Alex paid his return home via Scotland and the USA. It took a year
from him to return from this trip. On arriving Alex and Elizabeth had built and
furnished, right down to the knives and forks in the drawers a home for Douglas
and Dorothy to move into on Cole Street, Masterton. This they did until they
moved out to the Mr Bruce farm and Alex and Elizabeth moved to their own
home at Cole Street. Nevin was born in Auckland as his mother was
staying with her family while Douglas was at the war, but Noreen and Jean were
both born at the farm in Mt Bruce.
Dorothy was born on 23 October 1883. Dorothy came from a well-to-do family in Auckland
Douglas inherited 'Dunvegan' the McLeod estate originally farmed by his Grandparents
Angus and Catherine McLeod.
Dorothy died on 28 December 1953 and Douglas on 15 March 1972 aged 75.
Nevin Douglas McLeod
Nevin was born on 8 April 1918, his father was overseas at the War at the time.
Nevin married Joyce Ellen. They
have one daughter Rosemary. Nevin
died 9 May 1980.
Noreen Elizabeth McLeod
Noreen was born on 25 June 1921. She was
the second wife of Reese Edinborough
Dawson, her cousin. Noreen and Reese had 6
children. They are now separated and
Noreen lives at 17A Keir St Masterton.
Dorothy Jean McLeod
Jean was born on 11 February1923. She has
not married and now lives at 22 Konini Street Masterton.
Thanks to Helen Tankersley
(daughter of Lizzie Chamberlain) and Clare
Taunton grandaughter of May Chamberlain and Douglas McLeod) for providing most of these comments.
Last updated 11 Nov 2009