Elizabeth Swadling was born about 1854 at Reading, Berkshire, England, the daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth nee Slade.
As an early nurse in the Taranaki district, and an early settler at Kaponga, she first came to New Zealand in 1887, after training as a nurse at the Reading Hospital and the Queen Charlotte's Hospital, London.
Elizabeth took up a relieving position at the New Plymouth hospital on her arrival in New Zealand, and undertook private nursing, mainly on horseback, when in 1906, she settled in Kaponga with her brother, William Swadling. His wife Sarah had died in May 1906, and Elizabeth had possibly come to look after her niece Doris Swadling who was 17 months old at the time. William died in June 1912 and Doris then went to live with Elizabeth in Hawera.
Elizabeth was well-known for her many kindly deeds, and her generous support of many charity organisations and other institutions that appealed to her humanitarian nature. A supporter of the Wesley Methodist Church, in 1948, her estate made a donation of £500 to the Sunday School building.
Elizabeth Swadling died on the 6 October 1948 in Hawera aged 94 years, and is buried at Hawera with her mother Mrs Elizabeth Hudson. (Christine Clement's husband's great-great-grandfather's third wife.)
Elizabeth Swadling's sister Emma who was born in Reading on the 8 January 1856, came to New Zealand about 1882. She married John Finlay of Tokaora in 1885 at Patea, and lived at Cliff farm, Tokaora for 23 years. Emma died on the 19 February 1925 aged 69 years and is buried at the Hawera cemetery.
Obituary "Hawera Star" Oct 1948 (Elizabeth)
Obituary "Hawera Star" Feb 1925 (Emma)
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