Topic: John Cunningham

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Mr John Cunningham,a very old and respected settler of Brookside.



Mr John Cunningham, a very old and respected settler of Brookside, passed away at his late residence, Park Road, Addington, on Thursday last. He was a native of Auchterarder, Perthshire, Scotland, and arrived m the colony by the ship  Mystery, in 1859.

He was one of the pioneer settlers of Brookside, then known as South Selwyn, having taken up land there over forty-three years ago. He took an active part in the advancement of the district, being one of the founders of the public school, then held in the Presbyterian Church, and was for nine years chairman of Committee. He was an active supporter of the Presbyterian Church, and gave the ground for the site, and was one of the promoters of the Public Library and a member of the Ellesmere Road Board in the early days.

Mr Cunningham also assisted to form  the Ellesmere Agricultural and  Pastoral Association, and for many years was a successful breeder and exhibitor of prize stock, especially shorthorn cattle. It was largely due  to his foresight and energy that the present station was placed at Irwell, and he was mainly instrumental in the erection of the goods shed, afterwards  taken over by the Railway  Department, and the erection of the cattle yards at the same station.  

He experienced many hardships, and in his late years, owing to failing health, he had gradually withdraw from public affairs, and four years ago retired altogether from active life.

He married Miss Boag, sister of the late Mr W Boag, Burnside, who survives him, together with a family of two sons and two daughters. The funeral left Addington on Saturday morning last, for the Brookside Presbyterian Cemetery, and was met on the way by a very large number of friends and relatives.

The subjoined is supplied by Mr John Rennie who was a very intimate friend of the deceased.

The late John Cunningham was the son of Andrew Cunningham of Westburn, Dunnage, Perthshire, Scotland. He came to New Zealand in 1859, and worked for the late John Mi mon the Lincoln Road for some time, and in the following spring went sheep shearing at the Levels Station, near Timaru. In 1863 he purchased some land at Brookside to settle there being amongst the first in the district. At that time there were no roads and the Irwell river was not crossable between there and Lake Ellesmere, and new arrivals made Cunningham's the first place of call where they, were hospitally entertained, and sometimes told where a section still unsold could be found.

He was a pushing and successful farmer and did much to make Brookside what it is today. He took a deep interest m the Presbyterian Church, and before the Church was built service was held in his house by the Rev. Campbell. Some years ago he retired to Christchurch., and the farm has been occupied by his sons.

He leaves a wife (a sister •of the late W Boag) two sons, and. two daughters to mourn his loss.

(Ellesmere Guardian, Volume XXVIII, Issue 2620, 31 December 1904, Page 2, Papers Past)

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John Cunningham

First Names:John
Last Name:Cunningham
Place of Birth:Scotland
User Name:Selwyn Library