David Shaw

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David Shaw was native of Stirlingshire, Scotland, where he was born in 1836 and was brought up on his brother's property. He was 26 years of age when he set out for New Zealand in 1862. The day before his departure on the ship Queen of Mersey, he was married to Miss Margaret Stevenson, a relative of Stevenson, the steam engine inventor.

It took 115 days to reach Lyttelton from Scotland. From Lyttelton, they went to the McKenzie Country where Mr Shaw was a shepherd for three years on the Castle Tekapo Station. He later had charge of the ferry boat across the Tekapo River. From there he went to Winchester where he farmed 100 acres very successfully for seven years. While there, he promoted the establishment of the local school and he was a member of the school committee.

In 1872, David Shaw went to Geraldine Flat where he acquired 440 acres of land and carried on mixed farming until his retirement in 1902. He also owned several other properties in the district in which he raised several thousand sheep. Mr Shaw took a prominent part in efforts for the establishment of a school at Geraldine Flat. He was Chairman of this school committee for some time. He was also an active worked for the improvement of the district.

David Shaw was a staunch supporter of the Presbyterian Church. He was one of the prime movers in the establishment of the Presbyterian Church at Temuka and was an elder both at Temuka and Geraldine until he retired to Kilsythe, Timaru to provide a "Mecca" for all descendants. There he linked up with the Chalmers Church where he served as an elder for many years, retaining office up to the time of his death in 1932. In his latter years, he was a member of the Trinity Church.

David and Margaret Shaw had 10 sons and 4 daughters, although 3 died at birth. Most of their sons were elders in various Presbyterian Churches.

In 1887, their daughter, Maggie, married Alex Penney.

Based on work by G B Aitken, Ashburton

Updated: 11 November 2006
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