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Obituary from "The Clutha Leader" for Ellen Houliston

This obituary is transcribed from "The Clutha Leader" of sometime in May (after the 15th obviously) - possibly by Peter Moffat.


Clutha Leader ? May 1919

On Thursday, the 15th inst., there passed away, at her residence, Ellenslea, Te Houka, in the person of Mrs. William Moffat, one of the oldest settlers in the district, and one of the most worthy and the most respected. Born in 1837, at Ednam, Roxburghshire, Scotland, her family, the Houlistons, for many years so well and favourably known in the Clutha, removed to Berwickshire and there, in 1857, Miss Ellen Houliston, as she then was, married Mr. William Moffat, and shortly afterwards the young couple emigrated to Victoria, where they resided for a few years and where three of their children - George, Alice and Robert were born.

In 1861 they decided to try their fortunes in New Zealand, and for two years Mr. Moffat was engaged in farming operations with the late Mr. Todd of the Taieri. In the meantime the Houliston family, Mr. and Mrs. Houliston and a number of sons and daughters, had arrived in New Zealand, and had settled in Te Houka, and thither in 1863, the Moffats made their way and sett1ed down in the adjoining farm, which, amid the many changes of the last 56 Tears, has remained as the old homestead.

As indicative of the life of the time and some of the hardships the early settlers had to face, the late Mr. J. Wilson, of Warepa, in his book "Reminiscences of the Early Settlement of Dunedin and South Otago", writes as follows:- "The Houlistons arrived in 1860, and along with the Moffats took up land in 1863. Adam Houliston brought the Moffats from the Taieri in a bullock dray as far as Milburn where for three days they were snowed in. They had to engage a three horse team to assist to bring them to the Clutha.

At Ellenslea, in the years that followed, other children were born - Isabel, Alexander, Ellen, Adam, William and Elizabeth. Of these Isabel died young, Alexander in his early manhood in 1888, Alice, wife of Mr. James Wilson jun., of Te Houka, some 18 years back, and Elizabeth, wife of Mr. Robert Houliston, jun., of Kakapuaka, about 11 years ago. A still greater loss however, was sustained in 1895, when Mr. Moffat himself was laid aside, and in spite of all the doctors could do passed away. Of the surviving children George, Robert, Adam, and William, all happily settled in homes of their own, are well known as successful and respected farmers in the Te Houka district , William occupying he original Houliston farm and also the farms of his father and his father's brother, the late Alexander Moffat. Ellen is the wife of Mr. A. Rooney, of Kakapuaka. Besides these there are also as members of the Moffat clan, some 37 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.. Of the family to which Mrs. Moffat belonged there are still living two sisters - Mrs Walker of Dunedin, and Mrs. Lindsay of Balclutha) and two brothers, Adam and Robert Houliston, well known farmers in Kakapuaka and Westland respectively.

During her long life the late Mrs. Moffat was singularly fortunate in the enjoyment of good health, a fact that largely accounts for hardships cheerfully and harmlessly borne in her early pioneer days, for her journeys on foot to the rising town of Balclutha, and in the early days before Balclutha came to have services of its own, to the church at Inchclutha. As a neighbour and friend she was, in the homely but expressive phrase of one who knew her well, a woman of the “right sort" - a good housekeeper, a good wife and mother, kindly and sympathetic and helpful neighbour; and, needless to say, her place will be greatly missed for many years to come. In spite of her great age her health, till within a year or two ago, was very good, and only lately, and for a few months, was she laid aside or made to any considerable extent to suffer. Even then her fortitude rarely if ever failed her, and the sufferings of her last days were patiently and bravely borne. In closing one might well quote the wise man's estimate of a good woman, and find it all true of Mrs. Moffat: "She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children will rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her."



Linked toObituary of Ellen Houliston; Adam Houliston; Ellen Shiels Houliston; Robert Houliston; Robert Houliston; Robert Houliston; Jane King; Adam Houliston Moffat; Alexander Moffat; Alison Wright Moffat; Elizabeth Jane Moffat; Ellen Isabella Moffat; George Moffat; Robert Moffat; Samuel William Moffat; William Moffat; Albert Thomas Clement Rooney; James Wilson; Alice Wright

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