John Howard Wallace

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John Howard Wallace

Birthdate: (75)
Birthplace: Liverpool, Lancashire, England
Death: June 9, 1891 (75)
Wellington, Wellington City, Wellington, New Zealand
Immediate Family:

Son of John Wallace and Elizabeth Wallace
Husband of Sarah Anne Wallace
Father of Elizabeth Louisa Wallace; Harriet Helen Harcourt; Marian Stanton Wallace; John Howard Wallace; Robert Bruce Wallace and 5 others
Brother of William Ellerslie Wallace; Robert Douglas Wallace; Marian Rollason Wallace; James Bruce Wallace and Sarah Anne Wallace

Managed by: Jason Scott Wills
Last Updated:

About John Howard Wallace

9 June 1891 DEATH of John Howard Wallace ... WALLACE - On the 9th June, at his late residence Woolcombe-street, John Howard Wallace, one of the oldest identities in Wellington, died from heart disease, aged 75 years JOHN'S OBITUARY ... Another well-known figure in the community has passed over the the great majority in the person of Mr John Howard Wallace, who breathed his last at his residence in Woolcombe-street shortly after 3 o'clock this morning. The deceased was one of the early settlers in New Zealand, having been a resident of the colony for over 50 years, and no one was better able to describe its rise and progress. The deceased gentleman was the son of Mr John Wallace, the descendant of an old Scottish family, and was born in Liverpool on the 11th February 1816. His father afterwards removed to Birmingham, where the son received his education. After leaving school the subject of this notice was apprenticed to Mr James Drake, bookseller and law stationer, of 52 New-street, Birmingham, and remained in his service for seven years. The establishment of Mr Drake was frequented by a number of leading people, and Mr Wallace was brought into contact with many persons who took a prominent part in the great political reform which did so much good for the Brisitsh people. While he was in Mr Drake's employment he was selecgted by that gentleman to make notes and sketches in connection with the issue of two railway guidebooks, which were amongst the first publications of the kind ever issued in England, and in pursuance of his duties he spent six months very pleasantly indeed perambulating over the railroads from Birmingham to Liverpool and Manchester, and from Birmingham to London. The Guides were edited by a Miss Twamley from the notes which he had made during his travels, and the sketches which he had taken at the same time were prepared for the books by his own father. While engaged in travelling the lines of railway referred to, he made the acquaintance of Mr S. White, who was a traveller for the firm of Messrs Lucas and Co., of Bristol and Birmingham, and they then decided to emigrate together. In the middle of July 1839, Mr Howard severed his connection with Mr Drake's establishment, and on the 18th of September of the same year he embarked for New Zealand in the Aurora, which arrived in Port Nicholson on the 22nd of January 1840, Mr White, who subsequently married one of his sisters (Marian Rollason Wallace 1821-1859), being a fellow passenger. Soon after landing he and Mr White entered into partnership as general merchants here, their place of business being on Lambton-quay, and subsequently a branch was opened at Nelson, Mr White going over to manage it in 1842. Mr White died there and Mr James Smith, who had married the widow (on 18 March 1846), became Mr Wallace's partner (this was James Smith who founded the firm, James Smith and Co, the management of which John Howard Wallace controlled). The partnership was eventually dissolved and Mr Smith went to England. Mr Wallace continued the business on his own account for some years, and his son Bruce then entered into partnership with him as auctioneers, commission agents, & c., their estlablishment being in Hunter-street. Mr Wallace, sen., retired from commercial life about eight years ago, and for some years past he had resided in Woolcombe-street. For about two years before his death he had been ailing and at times his health was such as to cause the greatest anxiety to his relatives and friends. About ten days ago he was obliged to take to his bed and although Dr Collins, who had attended him for a considerable period, did all that medical skill could avail, he gradually sank, and breathed his last this morning, having been unconscious for some hours previosuly. His age was 75. The immediate cause of death was heart disease. The late Mr Wallace was one of those who bore a good share of the heat and burden of early colonisation, his constant desire being to further the interests of his adopted country. He took an active part in local politics, and was for eight years Chairman of Committees in the Wellington Provincial Council, in which capacity he performed valuable public service. He was also at one time a member of the Town Board, and for many years he was on the Commission of the Peace. In the early days an association was formed in Wellington to draw up a position to the House of Commons, praying that a Constitiution whould be framed for New Zealand, and Mr Wallace was one of the most active members of the organisation, many of whose suggestions were embodied in the Constitution subsequently granted to the colony. Mr Wallace also took a lively interest in the various gatherings which were held to celebrate the anniversary of the colony, and his face and form were conspicuous at the Jubliee festivites last year. He acted as one of the secretaries of the movement and was one of the four gentlemen who received an illuminated address in recognition of the services rendered in connection with the celebration. The late Mr Wallace was married in Wellington and his wife survives him. A large family was born, but only three of them are now living - one daughter, the wife of Mr J. B. Harcourt, of Wellington, Mr Bruce Wallace, who is in Melbourne and Mr John Wallace, at present in England. Six of the family were carried off by the malignant fever epidemic which was experienced many years ago and another died from the effect of an accident. The deceased was an energetic citizen, and was much respected. From the time of his arrival to his last illness, he made it his business to obtain as much information as he possibly could concerning the rise and progress of the colony, and he was the principal author of "The Early History of New Zealand," (and other writings) a work which furnishes a vast quantity of valuable data. He also prepared a manuel of the same work for use in the schools. The funeral will leave the deceased's late residence in Woolcombe-street at 11 a.m. on Thursday - John had no fewer than three early streets name after him - John Street, Howard Street and Wallace Street

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John Howard Wallace's Timeline

February 11, 1816
Liverpool, Lancashire, England
Age 34
April 13, 1852
Age 36
August 2, 1853
Age 37
Age 38
Age 39
Age 40
January 7, 1859
Age 42
Age 43
Age 44