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STRATTON FAMILY

The Stratton family was signed up by New Zealand Company recruiting agents McEwen and Miller on 25 September 1840.

Stratton, Thomas, labourer, Hawkhill, Dundee M 45/35 B 5 G 9                                                                      

Stratton, George, labourer, Hawkhill, Dundee, S 15.                                                                      

Stratton, David, Hawkhill, Dundee, S 14

Thomas Straiton married Elizabeth Scott, Perth, 14 November, 1823.

 

Their children were:

Thomas 26/1/1825 Perth

George 25/5/1826 Perth

David 5 August 1828 Perth

Isabel 19 July 1831, Dundee

John 25 August 1835, Dundee.

They sailed from Gravesend on 21 October, 1840 on the ship Lady Nugent, less than a month after they were recruited. The ship arrived in Wellington on 17 March, 1841.

There seem to be few references to the Stratton family during their early years in the Wellington area. These are two of them.

Wellington Independent, 29 April 1848. DWELLING-HOUSE TO LET. On Te Aro Flat, presently occupied by Capt. Hardy. For particulars, apply to T. STRATTON. Wellington, April 25, 1848.    

 

New Zealand Spectator, 2 March 1850. To Let.  A COMMODIOUS HOUSE, situate about the centre of the Te Aro Flat. For particulars apply, on the premises, to T. Stratton, at the Office of this Paper. Wellington, 20th Feb., 1850.

In 1852 Thomas was allocated a block of land (probably about 10 acres) on the western side of the Hutt River.

No.390 Thomas STRETTON Wellington Crown Grant: also part Country section 37 Lower Hutt district date 22 June 1852 Claim No.412

However, it was his son George, along with many of the Hutt settlers, who signed the following petition:

New Zealand Spectator and Cook's Strait Guardian, 3 April 1852, To His Excellence Sir George Grey, &c, &c, &c. We, the undersigned Settlers and Landowners of Wellington, in the colony of New Zealand, beg respectfully to express to your Excellency our strong sense of the serious evils to our interests, and injury to the colony, arising from the Act to regulate the affairs of certain of the New Zealand Company's settlements, passed during the last session of Parliament. Under the New Zealand Company's Land Claimants Ordinance, passed by the General Legislature of the colony, the different questions arising out of these claims were arranged on a liberal and equitable basis, and Crown Grants were offered to the land purchasers and holders of land under the Company's Compensation Scrip, which gave them a valid and unquestionable title whereas, the Grants offered to them, under the Act of Parliament referred to, are of so qualified a nature, that no land purchasers will agree to accept them, while serious doubts are entertained whether any titles can be issued under the Act of Parliament to the owners of land selected under the Company's Compensation Scrip. The Act of Parliament revives the Terms of Purchase and Pasturage of Land, issued by the New Zealand Company in Wellington, and in force at the date of the surrender by the Company of its charters to the Government, which fix the price of rural land in this settlement, in blocks of 25 acres, at £2 per acre the effect of these terms, when in force under the Company, was such that no rural land was sold in this settlement. (truncated). George Stretton.

Thomas Stratton died on 22 January 1857 at the age of 73. His wife Elizabeth was to live for another 18 years.

Evening Post, 8 February 1875. On the 8th inst., Elizabeth, wife of T. Stratton, Hutt, aged 72 years, [Queenstown papers please copy]     

Evening Post, 8 February, 1875. The Funeral Procession of the late Elizabeth Stratton will leave her son's residence, at the Hutt, on WEDNESDAY, at 3 o'clock.        

 It is not clear where they were buried, but it is likely that they were buried at Blackbridge, given that there were few other alternatives at that time, and the comments at the time of their son George’s death.

The ages of both Thomas and Elizabeth at time of death do not correspond with their ages when they applied for migration to New Zealand, and it is likely that they reduced their ages in order to qualify.  

   

George Stratton married Sarah Membery on 24 January 1848.

Their children were:

Mary Elizabeth 1849,

Isabella 1850,

Thomas 1853,

David 1857,

Sarah Scott 1859,

Jane 1862,

Ellen 1864,

Isabella Louise 1866,

George John 1869,

Elizabeth 1871, William 1873.

On the City of Wellington electoral roll for 1854-55 George Stratton is listed in Cuba St with the occupation of carpenter. By 1865 he is on the Hutt Electoral Roll.

Return of lands sold and Deposits received in the Province of Wellington, from the 1st to the 31st October 1863. Wellington George Stratton Adjoining R. Burns' selection, Hutt 25 acres.

   

George Stratton appears to have been involved in a number of business activities in the Wellington area. 

WP 1867/437 Sep 23 Relating to the firing of the Western Hutt boundary (D. McEwen, Belmont) Survives

 

WP 1867/501 Nov 01 Tendering to construct a length of road in Western Hutt [accepted] (Andrew McEwen, Belmont) Also enclosed is a letter of the same date from George Stratton also tendering to construct a length of road in Hutt Valley.

Evening Post, 31 December 1874. WANTED, Bushmen; highest wages given. Apply to Stratton and Evenson, Mungaroa.

The family was also involved in the Hutt Rifle Volunteers.

Nominal Roll of the Persons enrolled and serving in the Hutt Rifle Volunteers 1871

Archives NZ Wellington Reference Arm 41 Box 12 Item 1874/1s

Entry from the Militia & Volunteers Inwards Correspondence Register [AD 3/10]

AD 1871/817 no date Application for Capitation for Hutt Rifle Volunteers (Officer commanding, Wellinghttp://www.nzpictures.co.nz/anzw_ad1_1871n817.pdf

Private George Stratton 18 Aug 1860 13 £2 10s

Private Thomas Stratton 23 Aug 1869 13 £2 10s

Private David Stratton 01 Oct 1870 13 £2 10s

George died rather suddenly in November 1875 at the age of 49.

Evening Post, 1 November 1875.  Between six and seven o’clock yesterday morning, a man was discovered lying apparently in a state of insensibility at the foot of the steps near the Hospital. He was at once inside, put into a warm bath and received every possible medical attention, but rapidly sank and died a few hours after admission. The name of deceased was George Stratton, He was about 35 years of age, a sawyer by trade, and had been working for some time at Manawatu, but had been in town during the last two or three weeks. He is supposed to have friends at the Upper Hutt. An inquest was held this afternoon. Dr. Bradford, who made the post mortem examination, gave it as his opinion that serious apoplexy, excellerated by exposure, was the cause of death, and the jury returned a verdict accordingly. 

Evening Post, 18 November 1875, Page 2. We are requested to collect a statement which has appeared elsewhere in reference to the man Stratton, who was found dying at the foot of the steps near the Hospital lately. It is not true that the body was buried without being identified by his friends. On the contrary, his friends were discovered and communicated with by the police, and by the undertaker, Mr. Brown, and his remains were interred at the Hutt, where some of his late relatives lie buried.

NOTE: It is this last statement that leads me to believe that his parents were buried in the Blackbridge Cemetery. His wife did not long survive him, dying two months later. The names of both of them appear on the memorial stone at Blackbridge.

Evening Post, 10 January 1876. DEATH On the 10th inst, at the Hutt, Sarah Stratton, widow of the late George Stratton, aged 46 years.         

Evening Post, 17 April, 1876. Wednesday 19th April. Sale of 11 acres of FREEHOLD LAND at the Lower Hutt, with house thereon, GEORGE THOMAS has received instructions from the Administrators of the late Mrs Sarah Stratton to sell by auction, on Wednesday, 19th April, the following desirable homestead, consisting of 11 acres of freehold choice land, on which is erected a substantial six-roomed house, with garden well stocked with fruit trees, &c, &c. Title Crown Grant. Also, at the same time 25 acres at Belmont The sale will take place at my rooms, Lambton Quay, at 2 o'clock: Terms at sale. N.B. The Auctioneer can strongly recommend this .property to any person of a small capital as a fine opportunity to commence with a dairy farm, vegetable garden, &c.     

Evening Post, 3 December 1880. TUESDAY, 14th DECEMBER, at 2 o'clock p.m. Sale of Valuable Freehold Property in Cuba-street, Wellington, known as Stratton's Estate. Title under Land Transfer Act. MESSRS. J. H. BETHUNE & CO., are instructed by Mr. Thomas Stratton, the administrator of the estate of George Stratton, deceased, to sell by public auction, at their sale rooms, corner of Featherston and Brandon streets, on the above date. All that valuable property situated in Cuba street, in the City of Wellington, being part of town acre No. 128, having a frontage of 60 feet by a depth of 60 feet (more or less), on which is erected one 7-roomed house and one 5-roomed house. For further particulars apply to Messrs. Buckley, Stafford, and Fitzherbert, Solicitors for the said Thomas Stratton or to the Auctioneers.

The third son, David, has been hard to trace. There is a possibility that he moved to Australia at some stage.

Wellington Independent, 19 August 1859, Post Office, Wellington, August 18th, 1859. ADDRESSES of Letters originally posted in the Province of Wellington, but which have been returned for the reason assigned on each. Writers are requested to apply for the same within one month from this date.  Stratton, D., Melbourne, Victoria.

Wellington Independent, 2 July 1861, Addresses of Letters originally posted in the Province of Wellington, but which have, been returned for the reason assigned on each. Stratton, David, Kyneton, Victoria, Melbourne.

However, there is a reference in 1870 to a David Stratton as a member of a jury.

Wellington Independent 28 June 1870. SUPREME COURT.  SPECIAL SITTING.— Monday, June 27. (Before His Honour Mr Justice Johnston.) --------------------- were placed in the dock with having made war against her liege Majesty the Queen.

The jury were then called Elijah Wilton, Thos. Hollis Stace, Charles Death, Thomas Thompson, Robert Austin, George Richardson, William Denis Nicholas, James Monaghan, William Baird, Thos. Ralph, David Stratton, Wm. Lowes. John M'Lean and Robert Taylor were challenged. The jury was empanelled, and the remainder of the petit jurors dismissed.

John Stratton’s movements in New Zealand are not clear. There is a legal battle over the estate in 1866.

Wellington Independent, 26 June 1866. On the 27th day of April, 1866, upon reading the petition and affidavits filled herein, and on hearing Mr. R. S. Cheesman of counsel for the said petitioner, it is ordered that the estate of the said John Stratton be sequestrated into the hands of Alfred Abraham Barnett, of Wellington, Auctioneer, and until the hearing of the said petitioner or until the further order of the said Court it is ordered that the said petitioner be heard at the Supreme Court. House on the 16th day of July next, at the hour of ten o'clock, and that protection of the said estate and person of the said John Stratton be granted until the said 16th day of July next.  (Extract only)

Two and a half years later the following appears in the same newspaper.

Wellington Independent, 3 December 1868. OTAKI SETTLERS. To the editor of the Independent. Sir, In reference to the letter that appeared in the Independent of the 24th instant, signed by Thomas Bevan and all the settlers of Otaki, we, the undersigned, as settlers, beg leave to deny having any connection with the same. (Signed) Wm. Small, A. John Hadfield, Chas. A. Abraham, W. R. P. Hadfield, J. Stratton, John Harper, J. Dixon, G. Fiarson, T. Goodison, R. Goodison, H. J. Mitchell, E. Prince, T. Hawkings. Otaki Nov. 30, 1868.

On 29 May 1877 a John Stratton died at the age of 38. The death is recorded at Feilding.

There is no certainty that these references all involve the same person, but there appear to be no other Stratton families in the southern North Island at that time.

The name Stratton is carried on through Stratton Street in Belmont, Lower Hutt.

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