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It has been difficult to find out much about this family. They do not appear in shipping records, and as they appear not to have had a family there is limited information available. Some information has been provided by a descendant of Agnes McGowan, sister of Isabella.

John Mander and Isabella Wood were married in Old Church, St. Pancras, London, on 19 October 1843. John was the third son of William Mander and Catherine O’Brien and was baptised on 26 April at Saint Mary, Warwick. William was a gardener/nurseryman.

Isabella Wood was the eldest daughter of Robert Wood and Helen Henrie, and was baptised on 25 September 1818 at Wrenbury, Cheshire. Robert Wood was variously a farmer/gamekeeper/bailiff and was originally from Roxburgh in Scotland. Her sister Agnes Wood, who was baptised on 19 December 1819, married William McGowan in 1841. William McGowan was for many years Presbyterian minister in Sandwick parish in the Orkney Isles, before the family moved to New Zealand. William was inducted as minister of the Presbyterian Church in the Hutt on 8 January 1866.

In the 1851 census John and Isabella appear at Kennall, Foots Cray in Kent. 

 Some typed copies of some letters that went between the Wood siblings between 1846 and 1852 still exist. There are several from Isabella in which she mentions John's gardening work. John and Isabella seem to have moved between various country houses near London.

Kennall House, Nr Chislehurst Kent – 1850 “You will see we are in a posh place and we are more comfortable than ever we have been anywhere before, we are only 10 miles from London and have a beautiful wood in the garden. We left Down Hall in August and it was a bad job ever going there, it was a miserable place and we shall always remember our troubles there but God is very good in giving us now a comfortable home for which we are truly thankful… John is very busy indeed, the plants are in a great mess in the garden, the gardner poor fellow died very suddenly in November and for somtime before all had been neglected and you know what a garden is if left. There is a very large conservatory and 5 or 6 vinery’s and a greenhouse in the garden so there is a good deal of glass.”

Down Hall – 1852 “John is very busy indeed with his gardening work now sowing seeds and getting the plants ready for bedding out, he works too hard for his strength here but we are afraid to move until we hear of another place. The Family are in London but will come back this first of May, we wish it was the first of November they are such bad kind of people”

John Maunder, Freehold, Hutt appears in the Hutt electoral roll from 1869-1870 onwards.

John worked as a nurseryman during the 1870s and 1880s, living in the Blackbridge area (now Boulcott).

Evening Post, 13 November 1873  THE HORTICULTURAL SHOW,    

The Horticultural Society's first ordinary show of the season was opened to-day, at the Odd Fellows' Hall. Calceolarias by Messrs Maunder and Bunkenbury.

Evening Post,  27 May 1878       

Mr. J. Mander, of the Hutt Nursery, has a large stock of coniferae in numerous varieties, just ready for transplanting, and as this is the best season for that operation those who are forming young plantations should pay him a visit.   

Evening Post 3 February 1879. 

Hot house grapes. Very fine hot house Grapes for sale, in variety; grown by J. Mander, at his Nursery, Lower Hutt.

Evening Post, 5 March 1879.   

To-day the annual show of the Hutt Agricultural, Horticultural, and Pastoral Society was held in Messrs. Barber's paddocks, Petoni, which were kindly placed at the disposal of the committee. In the horticultural department the judges were Messrs. F. Cooper, J. M'Nab, and Jay, for amateurs; Messrs. Mander, Valentine, and Heighten, for gardeners.


Evening Post, 28 October 1886.

Mr. John Mander, nurseryman, Lower Hutt, informs us that on Tuesday night last some person entered his premises and robbed his cucumber frames of some of their contents and destroyed the plants.  

Evening Post, 8 October 1877.

The following telegram from our own correspondent gives the result of the inquest Hutt, 8th October, 12.20. An inquest was held to-day, before Dr. Wilford, coroner, relative to the death of Fanny Mason, at the Hutt. Mr. John Mander was foreman of the jury. Evidence was given to the effect that “the deceased had died through taking an overdose of chlorodyne when in an unsound state of mind.” A verdict in accordance with these facts was given. 

Isabella appears as being very involved in the Presbyterian church, and particularly in fundraising.

Evening Post, 11 February 1878.       

BAZAAR! BAZAAR! A Bazaar in aid of the Lower Hutt Presbyterian Church Repair Fund will be held on the 18th March. Contributions of useful and fancy articles, money, fruit, flowers, plants, &c, &c, are solicited, and will be thankfully received by the following ladies, who have kindly consented to act as receivers for the same Mrs. Paterson, the Terrace, Wellington Mrs. Moir, Te Aro, Wellington Mrs. M'Nab, Hobson street, Wellington Mrs. M'llvride, Lower Hutt Mrs. Mander, Lower Hutt Mrs. Compton, Lower Hutt Mrs. Bruce, Taita Mrs. Caverhill, Belmont

Evening Post, 14 March 1878. 

A Bazaar and Soiree in aid of the Lower Hutt Presbyterian Repair Fund will be held on MONDAY, the 18th of MARCH, 1878 (St. Patrick's Day). BAZAAR will be opened at 12 noon tea at 4 o'clock p m. A special train will leave the Lower Hutt for Wellington at 10 o'clock p.m. Articles for the Bazaar not yet delivered may be sent to Mrs. M'llvride, Lower Hutt; Mrs. Mander, Lower Hutt

Evening Post, 19 March 1878.

The bazaar in aid of the Presbyterian Church, Lower Hutt came off yesterday with great success at the Hutt, in a paddock adjoining the church. A large collection of useful and ornamental articles was displayed, and found ready sale, raffles being entirely dispensed with. The fair stall-holders were as follows Misses Ellen and Agnes Milne, Purchase, Compton, M'llvride, and Cook, Mesdames Sinclair, M'Kee, Speedy, and Moir. Christ- mas-tree saleswoman Miss Ransom. The stewardesses were Mesdames Mander, Bruce, M'Culloch, Milne, Compton, Chapman, and Coulter, Misses M'Culloch, Bruce, Sinclair, and M'Gowan. Refreshment stall-holders Mrs. Chapman and Miss Fortune. Athletic sports also were held during the day, the results being as follows Boys' Race, under 15 —P. M'llvride, 1; A. Copeland, 2. Girls' Race, under 15 Miss M'llvride, 1 G. M'llvride, 2. 600 Yards Race, open to all A. Pringle, 1 D. Pringle, 2. 300 Yards Race, open to all J. Knight, 1 G. Mason, 2. Running High Leap P. M'llvride, 1. Putting the Stone (281bs) - C. Avery, 1 J. Avery, 2. A capital tea was served at 4 p.m. in a large tent on the ground. In the evening a soiree and meeting was held in the church, when addresses were delivered by the Revs. Messrs. Paterson, Ogg, Moir, Fraser, and Grant; recitations by Misses Speedy and M'llvride, Messrs. Chapman, M'llvride, and Speedy; also, musical selections by Misses Milne and Prouse, Mr. M'llvride, and the choir. Prizes also were distributed by Mr. Grant to the best Sunday scholars. The whole affair passed off most satisfactorily, the weather being all that could be desired.

Isabella died in 1882, and John 9 years later in 1891. Both are buried in Blackbridge cemetery.

Evening Post, 15 November 1882. 

Funeral Notice. The Friends of Mr. J. Mander are respectfully invited to attend the funeral of his Wife, to leave his residence, at Black Bridge, Lower Hutt, on Thursday, the 16th November, 1882, at 2.30 p m. Joseph Hall, Undertaker. Hutt, 14th November, 1882.  


In the Evening Post of 14 November 1882 is the following obituary.

A Hutt correspondent writes: “Mrs Mander another old and respected Hutt resident, has gone from our midst, deeply regretted by all who knew her. She will long be remembered as one who exemplified, in a quiet but unmistakeable manner, the virtues and graces of the Christian character, and who sought, without ostentation, to follow in the footsteps of the Master it was her delight to serve. She had a rare faculty of inspiring confidence and esteem in all who made her acquaintance, and was always sympathetic and helpful to anyone in distress, so that not a few in the Hutt will learn of her death with deep and sincere regret."

Evening Post, 21 December 1891. Funeral Notice. The Friends of the late Mr. John Maunder are invited to attend his Funeral, which will leave his late residence, Blackbridge, Hutt, on Tuesday, 22nd inst., at 3 p.m. G. & A. HALL, Undertakers.     



Llangollen Canal - Wrenbury Church Lift Bridge for SJ5948

A hand-operated lift bridge north of Wrenbury

  © Copyright Pierre Terre and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Maunder - Llangollen Canal .jpg
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