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Finch IndexThomas and Mabel Finch

Thomas Finch was born 22 Aug 1868 at Alexandra and died 06 Jun 1910 in Ohaupo Te Awamutu. He was buried 08 Jun 1910 Pirongia Cemetery, Block B, Plot No 3 

When Thomas left Pirongia school  in 31 Mar 1880 he went to Auckland to be a ships carpenter.

On 30 Dec 1896, Thomas Finch married Mabel Annie Bowden at Auckland. Her parents 
were Charles Augustus Bowden and  Harriet nee Norsworthy. Mabel was born 07 Jul 1867 in Otahuhu, Auckland.  Her father had been born in 1832 in
Devon, and was brought up on a farm before he came to Auckland on the ship “Royal Charlie” in 1862. He was for some time employed by Mr. Alfred Buckland before leasing a property at Otahuhu, which he farmed for twenty-five years. For the next 6 years he farmed at Paterangi at the Waikato, and in 1896 leased a 800 acre property situated near the township of Te Awamutu and undertook both dairying, sending the milk of forty cows to the creamery and mixed cropping. Active in local affairs, he was chairman of the Otahuhu Road Board for many years, and on various school committees. He had five sons and Mabel was one of five daughters.

Brothers George and Thomas set up in business together in a coachbuilding business at Paeroa, and  Thomas became a valued member of the area offering backing to a variety of interests.

He was one of about sixty householders in April 1900 at a meeting an the Paeroa School, and was elected to the committee.

The Paeroa Brass Band had been
established in 1894 and by 1900 had ten performing members - it's officers were Messrs F. Plescher (bandmaster) and Mr. T. Finch (secretary). The band was available to assist at local events, and add its input for the benefit of charitable institutions.

Loyal Jubilee Lodge, I.O.O.F., M.U. This lodge was established in 1897 and by 1900 had a membership of eighty-two. They held fortnightly meetings at the Masonic Hall. Officers; J. W. Woodbury (N.G.), T. Finch (V.G.), B. King (treasurer), D. C. Potts, junior (secretary).

The brothers decided to go their own way and in 1902 Thomas Finch (Reg. No: 54820, Rank: Private) enlisted with the North Island Regiment - D Squadron Unit and on Feb 1st 1902 joined the 8th Contingent went to South African Boer War on the ship Surrey. He have his occupation as farmer, address as Woodleigh Glenmurray, Auckland and named brother George Finch as next of kin. 

Obituary to THOMAS FINCH It is probable that the death of Mr Tom Finch, of Ohaupo, has brought home the sense of bereavement over as wide an area as any similar event in the locality for a good long time. The last sad ceremony, on Wednesday, attended by a great concourse of people, bore touching evidence of the universal regard that our late friend inspired. Shortly after 2 o'clock the long funeral procession, headed by the Cambridge Band, reached this township from Ohaupo where it was received by the assembled Freemasons, of which body Mr Finch was a distinguished member. The Alexandra Lodge had opened in the first degree before the arrival of the cortege and immediately adjourned. The masons, in full regalia, formed in procession, the band leading and playing the "Dead March in Saul." An impressive sight was presented from the cemetery hill as the apparently endless line wound slowly round into the approach. Some 60 to 70 buggies and other conveyances were counted, long lines of horsemen bringing up the rear. On halting at the cemetery gates the bandsmen formed up in open ranks and eight of the masons, bearing the remains of their dead confrere, moved forward in a solemn hush as the words "I am the Resurrection and the Life." were uttered by Archdeacon Willis, of Cambridge, who officiated. At the graveside the usual Church of England ceremony was supplemented by that of the Freemasons, W. P .M. Colquhoun, of the Alexandra Lodge, conducting in the absence of M Bro. W.W. Dew, District Grand Secretary, who was unable to attend. Quite a number of people present had never witnessed the burial ceremony of the masons, rendered according to their ancient rites, and were impressed not only by its stately solemnity and admirable phrasing but by its quality of humanness and powerful appeal to the emotions. As the ceremony concluded the band commenced the hymn, "Days and moments quickly flying."
The procession then re-formed and returned to the lodge, which was closed according to ancient usage. A large number of masons from the Waipa Lodge, Te Awamutu, and other places were present. Deceased was born in Pirongia about 42 years ago. Originally apprenticed to the shipbuilding trade in Auckland, he was afterwards associated with Mr George Miles at the smithy here. Later he joined his brother in the smiths and coachbuilding business at Ohaupo. Intensely fond of music he was at different times a member of the Cambridge and Ohaupo bands, and his skill contributed to the victory scored by the former in the band contest held at Wanganui where the Cambridge men carried off the first prize. The late W.P.M. Tom Finch was for about three years secretary of the Alexandra Masonic Lodge, and apart from the personal grief felt by members at his loss, they suffer the deprivation of a most valuable officer who contributed very largely to the successful working of the Lodge. The deceased leaves a wife and five young children, one an infant of three months. That the widow and relatives of the deceased have our sympathy they know. When time shall have softened somewhat the keenness of their grief the ceremony will have its silver lining as a memory of dignified ritual in a setting of brilliant weather and blue skies.

Family of Thomas and Mabel Finch:

1 Charles Arnold Finch (b: 14 Jun 1898 d: 09 Jul 1973 in Putararu ageed 75 yrs) 1917 Mr C A Finch, teacher, Kaimai, BOP; Mar: 22 Apr 1920 to Mary Elizabeth Hunt (b: 01 Mar 1899 Father: Frederick Maxwell Hunt, Mother: Ellen) She d: 02 Dec 1928 in Te Awamutu Bur: 12 Apr 1929)

2nd Wife of Charles Arnold Finch: Mar: 04 Apr 1931 to Ruby Kennedy (b: 23 Oct 1907 Father: Alfred Kennedy, Mother: Minnie; d: 17 Mar 1985 in Putararu)
Headstone Inscription: TIRAU ST PUTARAU, Block: 15 Plot: 13
In memory of Charles Arnold FINCH, Died 9th July 1973, Also Ruby FINCH, Died 17th March 1985, Forever Loved.

2 Thomas Creighton Finch (b: 13 Nov 1900 Thomas had retired as a hardware salesman when he died at 21 Carlton St. Te Awamutu on 25 Sep 1984 and bur 28 Sep Te Awamutu Lawn cemetery aged 84)

3 George Norman Finch (b: 20 Jan 1902 He had retired from the Civil Service when he d: 21 Oct 1986 in Ngatea)  Mar: 10 Oct 1923 to  Matilda Jane Sneddon (b: 22 Apr 1900 Father: Robert Marshall Sneddon, Mother: Martha Seed; d: 19 Aug 1989)

4 Alfred Owen Finch (b: 30 Dec 1904 A farmer of Ohaupo Road, Te Awamutu d: 09 Jul 1949; bur:  Te Awamutu Plot No: 1071, age 43 yrs) Married: 1938 to Irene Rose West (b: 1928 d: 07 Feb 1990 Address: 432 Fairview Road; Bur: Te Awamutu Cemetery aged 72 yrs)

5 Lorna Harriett Finch (b: 10 Feb 1910 d: 28 Jul 2004 aged 94 years. Crem. 16 Apr. and her ashes to  Te Awamutu Cemetery, Lot 1758)

Their mother  Mabel Annie Finch lived at  21 Carlton Street, Te Awamutu and died 16/7/1957 aged 90 yrs She is buried at Te Awamutu Cemetery, Plot No. 144.

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