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Family notes - Thomas Redpath

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This page has biographical information about Thomas Redpath (1829-1889), his wife Ann LEITH (1838-1922), also known as Ann LOGAN, and their children.

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Thomas REDPATH and family



Thomas REDPATH (1829-1889)

Thomas Redpath was born in Cranshaws, Scotland on 3 March1829, the fourth child of George and Elizabeth Redpath. At the time, the Parish of Cranshaws in Berwickshire had a population of about 130 and comprised three farms. George Redpath was a shepherd on one of the farms.

In the 1851 Census, Thomas was working as an agricultural laborer on a farm at Whittinghame, East Lothian. The farmer, James Darling, farmed 4000 acres and employed ten people. Whittinghame was about 20 km from Cranshaws.

Thomas Redpath and his common law wife Ann Logan (or Leith) had their first child, Elizabeth Redpath in 1856. Thomas and Ann decided to migrate to New Zealand and after organising their passage got married in Edinburgh on 29 May 1860.

A few days later on 2 June, Thomas, Ann and Elizabeth departed from Clyde (Glasgow) on the Robert Henderson, bound for Port Chalmers in Otago. Ann, who was registered under the name Logan, was pregnant again. The Robert Henderson was an Aberdeen Clipper: 522 gross tons, length 158 ft (48.15m) x beam 28.3 ft (8.62m), a three masted rigged vessel, wooden hull, built in 1857, fitted out with every convenience for the comfort of passengers. Passengers included: 210 adults, 62 children from 1 to 12 years, and 13 infants. There were three births and 11 deaths during the voyage. There were about 40 cases of scarlet fever on board, and 4 deaths from that disease, the last occurring on the 26 July.

The ship arrived in Otago on 3 September 1860, and on the 4 September Ann gave birth to a son, George Redpath, while still on board the Robert Henderson. The ship and passengers were initially kept in quarantine upon arrival because of the scarlet fever. Otago had a population of about 12,000 in 1860, but this had grown to over 30,000 in December 1861 after gold was discovered in May 1861.

Ann and Thomas had a further six children after they settled in New Zealand. Thomas obtained a Crown Land Grant in 1864 at Mount Stuart in Otago. Thomas died at home on 19 July 1889 and was buried at Waitahuna. The Mount Stuart farm was taken over by May Redpath and her husband Hugh Crozier in 1903.

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Ann LEITH (aka Ann LOGAN) (1838-1922)

The origins of Ann Leith (Logan) are not entirely clear. Ann was the daughter of Margaret Boyle and John/James Logan, born in 1838 in Dalry, Ayrshire, according to Ann's marriage and death registration. Her mother married Joseph Leith in Dalry in 1841 after the birth of another child. Ann was not recorded as present in the 1841 census, but in the 1851 census she was listed as the daughter of Joseph and Margaret Leith, born Dalry. Ann was born before civil registration of births started in Scotland, and no record of her baptism has been found (neither Ann Logan or Ann Leith). A family photo album had a picture of Ann's mother labeled by Elizabeth Korte (nee Redpath) as "Mrs Leith"; giving the clue to her birth surname.

It is concluded that Ann was born in Dalry in 1838, the daughter of Margaret Boyle and Joseph Leith. It appears that she changed her surname to Logan after leaving home. This is supported by the birth registration of Mary Landells Leith in 1855, where Margaret Boyle's living children were listed as four sons and two daughters (Ann and Mary). Ann had an older half-sister Elspet Leith, b 1831 and raised by her paternal grandparents.

The Leith family lived in a number of locations based on census and baptism records: 1838-1841 Dalry, Ayrshire; 1843 Peterculter, Aberdeenshire where Joseph's parents lived; 1845 Prestonkirk, East Lothian; 1850 Coldingham, Berwickshire; 1851 Cockburnspath, Berwickshire; 1855 Abbey St Bathans, Berwickshire; 1858 Northumberland, England. Ann's parents had separated by 1861, with Margaret living in Dalry for the rest of her life. Joseph Leith was a stone mason or stone dyker. He was placed in the Lunatic Wards of Stonehaven Poorhouse (Kincardineshire) in 1881 and died a few weeks later.

As mentioned above, Ann married Thomas Redpath in Edinburgh (1860), migrated to New Zealand (1860), and had seven children (listed below). Ann died in 1922 and was buried at Waitahuna, Otago.


There passed away recently, at the age of 94 years, a very old and highly respected resident of Waitahuna district in the person of Mrs Redpath, relict of Mr Thomas Redpath, one of the first settlers at Mount Stuart. Born at Darley, Ayrshire, Scotland, in 1838, she left for New Zealand, with her husband, in the sailing vessel Thomas Henderson, and arrived here in 1860. Mr and Mrs Redpath’s first experience of New Zealand roads came early in their pioneering life, when, through some misunderstanding with regard to travelling arrangements, they had to walk from Dunedin to the Taieri with their eldest child and an infant in arms. The trials of this journey were never forgotten by Mrs Redpath. After residing for some years in the Taieri they removed to Akatore, and ultimately settled about 1870 at Mount Stuart, where Mr Redpath was the first person to take up land. By a coincidence Mrs Redpath was the last of the very early band of settlers to leave that district. Of a kindly and hospitable nature, Mrs Redpath was loved and respected by all who had the pleasure of her friendship. Steadfast in her convictions and strong in her Christian beliefs, she was a staunch adherent of the Waitahuna Presbyterian Church and a supporter of all that pertained to its welfare. Mrs Redpath was pre-deceased by her husband 30 years, and also suffered the loss of two sons, George and Thomas, in later years. The other members of the family are Mrs James Redpath (Auckland), Mrs J. H. Kitto (Invercargill), Mrs D. Scott (Stirling), Mrs J. H. Bateman, Miss Redpath, and Mrs H. B. Crozier (Waitahuna). Mrs Redpath was laid to rest beside her husband in the Waitahuna Cemetery, the funeral service being conducted by the Rev. P. C. Durward, of Lawrence.

Otago Daily Times, 13 November 1922

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Children of Thomas and Ann

Elizabeth Redpath

Elizabeth REDPATH (1856-1933)

Elizabeth Redpath was the eldest child of Thomas and Ann Redpath, born in Scotland in 1856. She migrated to New Zealand in 1860 with her parents on the ship Robert Henderson. Elizabeth received her education at the East Taieri and Akatore Schools, and later entered the service of Dr Inglis of Mosgiel. Elizabeth was for many years employed by Mr and Mrs John Ross, of Murray's Flat, Waitahuna, and faithfully attended them in their declining years. She was a strong supporter of Waitahuna Presbyterian Church. Elizabeth died in 1933 aged 77 and was buried in Waitahuna, Otago.

Above from Otago Daily Times, 11 May 1933. Photo from Sue Brown, Levin.

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George REDPATH (1860-1914)

George Redpath, the eldest son of Thomas and Ann Redpath, was born in 1860 on the ship Robert Henderson when it arrived in Port Chalmers after sailing from Scotland to New Zealand. George married Charlotte Walker in Milton, Otago on 28 January 1886.

Charlotte Walker, born on 1 January 1860 in Melbourne, Australia was the eldest daughter of Alexander Walker and Isabella Brough. Alexander and Isabella were from Scotland, and Alexander worked in a flour mill in Milton, Otago. After George and Charlotte married they went to live on a leased farm at Tuapeka West where gold had been found. The land was very poor because it had been dug over deeply by those in search of gold. The couple had five children while living at Tuapeka West.

Because the Tuapeka West farm was not very productive, and a recent crop of barley had been spoiled by rabbits, George decided to find something better. Members of the Hay family, who had also arrived in Otago on the same ship as the Redpaths, had found better prospects in Poverty Bay in the North Island. George decided to try his luck in that direction too and in a ballot acquired a farm, "Waimare", at Rakauroa about 70 km from Gisborne in Poverty Bay. The family traveled north by steamer to Gisborne in January 1893.

The farm at Rakauroa was covered in bush and only had a small whare, so the family settled on an acre of land with a house at Matawhero. George built a house on the farm at Rakauroa and in January 1897 the family moved to "Waimare". Charlotte, the youngest daughter of George and Charlotte, was born in 1902. In 1907 when the first ballots were held in Opotiki for sections of land in the Waioeka Gorge, George drew one at Omakaroa. This section, covered in bush, was developed.

The Poverty Bay Herald reported on 1 Dec 1913 that George had been ill for some time. He died on 28 February 1914 and was buried at Rakauroa. Following the death of George, the Rakauroa farm was managed by his son-in-law Fred Korte during the First World War.

In April 1921 Charlotte Walker moved to Gisborne with daughter Charlotte. Charlotte had pernicious anemia and was very ill until she died in August 1921 aged 61. George and Charlotte's eldest son Thomas settled at "Waimare" with his bride Marion Picken.

The following Obituary was published in the Poverty Bay Herald on 4 March 1914:

The late Mr George Redpath, of Rakauroa, was born at Port Chalmers, on board the ship Robert Henderson as she arrived in port from the Homeland, and was identified with pioneering work all his life, haying settled in the Tuapeka district before he came to Poverty Bay. Twenty-one years ago he took up the section at Rakauroa, where he had resided ever since, and he has seen the transformation of the wilderness into fruitful fields and smiling homestead. Two of his sons acquired property in the Waioeka district, which they still hold, he himself taking up another property lying between Waioeka and Rakauroa. He was a man of indomitable perseverance and sterling character, and was ever to the fore in anything that was for the good of the district, being large hearted and generous. He leaves a widow, three sons (one a medical student in Dunedin) and two daughters, and an aged mother, who had been on a visit to see him. Much, sympathy is felt for his widow, who in the short space of ten months has lost a beloved daughter, a mother, and now her husband, a man who was respected and beloved throughout the whole district.

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James Darling REDPATH (1862-1928)

James Darling Redpath was born in 1862, the second son of Thomas and Ann Redpath. James was named after his father's former employer in Scotland, James Darling. In 1890 James was working as a ploughman in Waitahuna according to the Electoral Roll. James married Mary Ann Blaikie on 25 January 1893 at Waitahuna. Mary had gone to school with James. The couple had four children between 1893 and 1900.

James and Mary moved to the North Island after their marriage. James successfully balloted for a block of land at Rangiwahia in the Manawatu on 26 May 1893. They developed and farmed the block until September 1899 when it was sold. The Rangiwahia district was newly settled and farms were being developed, with the Rangiwahia Dairy Factory opening in 1898. Postal directories indicate that the family remained at Rangiwahia until 1902.

By 1903 James and Mary had moved to Kimbolton near Fielding were James continued to work in farming. From 1905 until 1917 the family lived in Feilding where James worked as a storeman and later as a salesman. In 1918 James and Mary had moved to Auckland where James initially worked as a salesman.

James died in 1928 and Mary in 1937. They were both buried in Waikumete Cemetery, Auckland.

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Margaret REDPATH (1864-1941)

Margaret Redpath, known as Maggie, was born in Milton, Otago in 1864. Maggie married William Ellis in 1885 and the couple moved to their farm at Seaward Downs, Southland where three children were born. William died in 1889 and Maggie remarried in 1892. She married David Dreaver and they had a daughter, but David died in 1894. In 1900 Maggie remarried again, to John Henry Kitto and they had a son. Maggie and John farmed at Seaward Downs until September 1908 when the farm was sold and they moved to Invercargill, Southland. Maggie died in 1941 and was buried in Invercargill. John died in 1955 and was buried in Invercargill.

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Euphemia REDPATH (1867-1945)

Euphemia Redpath was born in 1867 at Milton, Otago. She married David Scott at Waitahuna in 1895. The couple lived in Milton until about 1912, then moved to Stirling, Otago where they farmed. They had ten children. David died in 1920 and Euphemia in 1945. They were buried in Balclutha.

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Annie Logan REDPATH (1871-1949)

Annie Logan Redpath was born in 1871 at Glenledi near Milton, Otago. She attended Waitahuna and Mount Stuart schools. In 1894 Annie married John Henry Bateman (known as Jack), at her mother's home at Mount Stuart, Otago. Annie and Jack had both been working in Waitahuna - Annie as a domestic servant and Jack on his grandfather's farm.

John Henry Bateman was born on 19 July 1867, in Bampton in Oxfordshire, England. He was the eldest child of Thomas Henry Bateman and Elizabeth Edwards. The family left England at the end of 1882 on the Wellington and arrived in Port Chalmers on 12 March 1883. The family lived at Fairfiew Farm at Mount Stuart, but Jack, who was fifteen, went to live with his mother's parents John and Louise Edwards. Jack's grandfather was managing a farm at Glenledi near the coast from Milton. He worked there for several years then returned to Waitahuna when his grandfather bought the property known as 'Paddy's Point'.

The couple lived at 'Paddy's Point' with Jack's grandfather Edwards until his death ten years later. By this time they had seven children and Jack was working for Otago Farmer's Agency. When John Edwards died the farm was sold and Jack and Annie moved to Waitahuna.

Jack died on 20 March 1925 in Waitahuna and is buried at Waitahuna. Annie died 21 January 1949 at Waitahuna and is buried with Jack (and his parents) in Waitahuna cemetery. The following obituary appeared on page 31 of the Otago Witness on 31 March 1925.

Mr J H Bateman died last Friday after a short illness, aged fifty-seven years. Mr Bateman was a public man and a very great favorite with all he came in contact with. His loss will be greatly felt in Waitahuna. Mr Bateman leaves a wife and five sons and three daughters to mourn his loss. The funeral on Monday was the largest seen in Waitahuna for very many years.

The above is extracted from Annie - a family history by Ann McDonald & Sue Brown (2008). A more detailed account is given in the book.

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Thomas Henry REDPATH (1873-1903)

Thomas Henry Redpath was the youngest son of Thomas and Ann Redpath, born in Waitahuna, Otago on 22 May 1873. Thomas attended school at Waitahuna and Mount Stuart, then assisted his mother run the family farm at Mount Stuart after his father died in 1889. Thomas committed suicide on 22 February 1903 aged 29. The following account of his death was published in the Bruce Herald.

Thomas Redpath shot himself at his mother's residence - Mount Stuart. The deceased had been ailing for some considerable time, but had always been fit for his work, and seemed cheerful and perfectly rational. He attended church on Sunday morning, and went home apparently in good spirits, but early in the afternoon he committed the fatal act with a small bore rifle, the bullet from which penetrated the brain from the center of the forehead. For some time the deceased had not been able to sleep, and insomnia had evidently brought on mental aberration, and during this fit of mental weakness he had committed the deed.

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May Wood REDPATH (1875-1939)

May Wood Redpath, the youngest daughter of Thomas and Ann Redpath, was born in Waitahuna in 1875. She was a resident of the Waitahuna and Mount Stuart districts all her life. In 1901 May married Hugh Blaikie Ross Crozier and went to reside in the Waitahuna township until, in 1903, Hugh Crozier took over Ann Redpath's farm at Mount Stuart. After 18 years farming there, May and Hugh retired and returned to their former home at Waitahuna. May was a bright and attractive personality, and was much-loved friend of all the children of the district. She was a staunch supporter of the Presbyterian Church, and took a keen interest in all branches of church work. During her 38 years of church membership May missed only one communion service, and this she was prevented from attending by her last illness. May was for many years an active and energetic member of the local Horticultural Society and was for some years one of its vice-presidents.

The couple had no children. May died in 1939 and Hugh in 1950. Both are buried in Waitahuna.

Details above from obituary in Otago Daily Times, 26 July 1939

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