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Edward's Legacy

New Zealand is the most terrible place for gossip I ever came across. There are, as you know, very few people here, and these have very little to talk about bar sheep. Consequently, when they do get hold of something new, you never know how such a story may get exaggerated.

Cecil Gascoigne, a young Englishman who was a regular visitor to Holme Station in South Canterbury, wrote these words in a letter home, dated 3 November 1897. Despite what he said, this book features only a few sheep. There is plenty of gossip but, we trust, no exaggeration whatsoever.

This is the fascinating story of Edward Elworthy and his wife Sarah Shorrock: their origins, their move to New Zealand, their life here, and the legacy they left their descendants. In describing the lives of a privileged South Canterbury family, it encompasses a unique aspect of the nation's social history.

Drawing on traditional and internet resources, interviews and unpublished letters and journals, this lively chronicle traces the early family history, describes life in a new land and expands on the significant contributions Edward Elworthy and many of his descendants made not only to farming and business throughout New Zealand, but also to their own communities. A special feature is an account of the life of Lord Elworthy of Timaru, Edward's most distinguished grandson.

The book is illustrated throughout with hundreds of fresh images, most of them gleaned from family albums. Although intended as a record for Edward and Sarah Elworthy's descendants, Edward's Legacy will also appeal to anyone interested in New Zealand's colonial past.


Published by Henry Elworthy Ltd.
416pp; 260mm x 190mm; cased and jacketed; 500+ illustrations.
NZ$95 (post-free within New Zealand)

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