James THOMPSON and Hester HUNT, Graham's Great Grandparents
                                                                                                           THOMPSON FAMILY HISTORY

Legend has it that THOMSON’s, due to the unsettled times, moved from Scotland to Cornwall. At the same time, they added the “P” to their surname and became
THOMPSON’s. If this is correct, it was prior to the 1750’s, as there is a related Thompson being born in Cornwall in 1752. There are concentrations of our Thompson’s in
Veryan, Cornwall and St-Just-in Roseland adjacent to the Channel Coast of Cornwall [not to be confused with  in St-Just, Penzance, about  40 miles away to the South West
on the Atlantic Coast of Cornwall]

William THOMPSON was born in Veryan, Cornwall in 1792, married Catherine Jose on 6th Feb 1827 and resided at Beacon Towers and/or Fallows in St Just. They had
one son,
William John THOMPSON. He married Mary Anne BLAMEY in St Just on 5th February, 1847. They had the following children

i.         MARY ANNIE THOMPSON, b. 01 Jan 1849, Veryan, Cornwall; d. 24 Jul 1923, Wellington.
ii.         WILLIAM JOHN THOMPSON, b. 09 Oct 1850, Veryan, Cornwall, ENG; d. 13 Jan 1931, Rongotea.
iii.        ELLEN ANN THOMPSON, b. 1851, St. Clements, Cornwall.
iv.        JAMES THOMAS THOMPSON, b. 03 Jul 1853, Green Veryan, Cornwall, ENG; d. 09 Aug 1895, Sanson.
v.         ALFRED THOMPSON, b. 03 Jan 1857, St.Just, Cornwall, ENG; d. 20 May 1931, Aramoho, Wanganui

William and his younger brother James, came to NZ on the Ship
"City of Auckland" arriving in Auckland.  They first went to Napier before settling in Sanson, Rangitikei, NZ
in 1873. After their Father’s death in Cornwall, their Mother, Mary Anne BLAMEY, Sister, Mary Annie THOMPSON and Brother, Alfred THOMPSON came to New Zealand on
the ship “Blairgowrie” arriving in Lyttleton on 24th August, 1875. They proceeded by a coastal ship to the port of Wanganui, where they travelled overland to Sanson.

Sanson became the “home ground” for the Thompson’s. The three brothers worked as general contractors. They were fortunate to gain a major contract in forming the
streets of Sanson with metal, which they manually dug up from the Rangitikei River, loaded it on horse and carts for the 3 mile slog to Sanson.  The boys were also in
demand during the busy farm harvesting season and were renowned for their hay stacking.

William John THOMPSON married Fanny Jane PEARCE

William lived in a two storied thatched roof house known as 'Beacon Towers' in Fallows at St Just Veryan Cornwall.

William had an affinity with animals and as a young Lad he found his pets to be great company. He slept in an upstairs bedroom and at night he would smuggle his cat up to
his room and it would sleep on his bed. On hearing his parents coming up the stairs he would quickly bundle the cat out the window. William received a good education and
was very musical, being a flute player. He had an appreciation for good jewellery and would fashion rings out of one shilling pieces. As a young lad he worked on the land in
Cornwall and he learnt skills which would stand him in good stead throughout his life.

After immigrating to New Zealand and settling in Sanson, he, along with his brother set up a contracting business. William purchased 13 acres of land in the district of
Campbelltown, in 1873 being part of the district known as the 'Douglas Block'. The early settlers paid Douglas three pound a acre for the land. William used the timber
felled from the bush to build his farm sheds and he became an expert axeman. He claimed the land which was swampy and planted  weeping willows along the creeks which
flowed through his property and named it ‘Willowbank’. The sprigs of willow had been given to him by a Mr Ransom who had brought them from the Island of St Helena  off
the coast of France.

William became friendly with the Pearce family of Sanson and  he helped the Pearce brothers drive their cattle from the Hutt  Valley to the Manawatu. On the 6th December
1884 he married Fanny Jane PEARCE . They lived at ‘Willowbank’ all their lives.

He planted gorse hedges along the roadside and these were used as fences – as in Cornwall. It was disappointing to him find in later life these bushes were classified as
noxious. Later,as their land became productive, income came mainly from the sale of butter which Fanny made and sold to the local store for four pence a pound, When the
Rongotea Dairy Factory opened in 1893 William would take his milk to the factory by horse and dray and sell it for three pence a gallon. William's ultimate goal was to farm
Romney sheep, which he did. He sheared with blade and when the Rongotea Coronation Hall was built in 1902, he donated a bale of wool towards its cost.

 James Thomas THOMPSON, married Hester Habgood HUNT
                                                                                              [Graham Savell’s Maternal Great Grandparents]

James had a team of horses, which were bred for work and well looked after. They had to be well fed and fit for the heavy tasks that were set for them, especially when the
grain was being delivered after harvesting. In those days wheat was carted by drays all the way to Feilding or Palmerston North before reaching the flour mill. Thirty miles
there and back every day with 25 sacks of wheat to a three horse team provided a test of stamina. In 1880 a flour milling business was established in Sanson opposite the
local school. This did away with the long hauls to Feilding and Palmerston North. James, with his team, ploughed many many acres in the surrounding district. James had up
to 10 acres in Sanson with stables and yards. Besides the horses, there was a house cow or two. Chaff and oats were purchased from local farms for horse

He married Hester Habgood Hunt when she was 18 and they had a family of 7. They lived in Sanson all their married life, firstly in B J Haines two-storeyed house [towards
the eastern side of he township] and then near the western boundary [close to the school] All the children attended Sanson primary school and were brought up as

James was a good father, a hard worker and always say the bright side of life, being described as the village humorist. He suffered from periodical attacks of asthma and in
early August 1895 was taken ill with inflammation of the lungs[pneumonia] which a few days later took his life. He was 42 years old

                        Hester Habgood HUNT

Baptized 27th May 1860 by Reverend J Warren at her parent's home. Habgood is a name coming from the Luxford family. Attended Sunday School at the Wesleyan
Methodist Sunday School, Lower Hutt. Hester was 14 years old when her parents and the family came to the Manawatu. Although Hester was the fourth child in the family,
she was the first to live to a marriageable age. She was married when 18 to
James Thomas Thomson at the Presbyterian manse in Bulls] on 21st September 1878 by Reverend J H Simmonds (first resident Methodist minister at Sanson) Hester and
James lived in Sanson township all their married life, firstly in B J Haines two storey house (towards the Eastern side of the township) then near the Western boundary,
(close to the School). All the children attended Sanson primary school and were brought up as Methodist's.

James’s early death at age 42 years left Hester with a young family of seven, their ages ranging from 16 years to six months. By this stage the oldest son Burt had been
working with his father on the roads and he left home to start working on the railways. Hester worked diligently to bring up her family with the help of her eldest daughter
Ciss.In August 1899 Hester experienced the loss of her youngest daughter, Florence exactly four years after her husband died.

Hester died on the 14th August 1923 at her daughter Connie Tostevin's home  in Sanson after several weeks of suffering. She was aged 63. Her funeral service was in
Sanson and she is buried alongside her husband and daughter Hilma

Alfred THOMPSON married Alice Mabey HARRIS

After the death of his father, William Senior [his grandfather], who was considered to be well to do, offered to take and educate Alfred, but only if he had nothing more to do
with his mother, sister or brothers. This he refused to do, so later, he along with his mother and sister came out to NZ in 1875 on the ship "Blairgowrie" landing at Lyttleton.  
Alfred joined his brothers William and James in their contracting business at

He married Alice Mabey Harris and then moved to Kaponga, South Taranaki, to a farm that was covered with huge standing bush. He  evidently felled this during the winter
months and then went stacking and shearing in the summer. They had two children while in this district, Alfred and Ernie. The four of them moved to Sanson approx. in
1896 where they acquired a small holding apparently left to Alice by her father. During this period he owned a butcher shop in Sanson. In his daily ledger book are many
names who are still in the district. One of the better customers was the local hotel and part payment of accounts would often be by way of bottles of Brandy and Whiskey.
He was a  Charter member of the Rangitikei Lodge no 38 and was installed as their master in 1903. Three further daughters were born to them while in this area

The whole family moved to Campden Street in Feilding for a few years before shifting to Aorangi where Alfred built their home. After farming there for a few years, they
moved to Guyton Street, Wanganui. These years in Wanganui were from approx. 1918-20 after which they moved to a farm in Waitetuna in the Waikato for a period of
three years before shifting to Bonny Glen, Marton. They shifted to Westmere in 1928 where they lived and farmed until Alfred passed away on 20th may, 1931

Mary Annie Thompson

Came out from ENG on the ship Blairgowrie in 1875. The next year she married Hastings Malcolm at the home of Louisa Russell of Marton. She was 26 years and he 25
years. They lived at Carnarvon where their home was the venue for the marriage of Robert Frances and Jane Symes, Mary Annie being a witness. At this time Hastings was
on a committee formed to build the first Anglican church in Sanson. Hastings was a witness for James and Hester's wedding in Bulls.

A year after they married, they had their first child, a son Frederick and two years later, a daughter Ada was born.

Sometime in the 6 years they shifted to Brooklyn, Wellington and Hastings was a wine merchant. They divorced around this time. Soon after, their son Frederick died. Six
years later, Mary Annie married again to John Doig, a painter by trade, in a registry office in Wellington. Henry was born the next year.

She is buried in the Bolton Street cemetery

Sources                 The Hunt Family History  - 150 Years in New Zealand - 1840 - 1990        Vera Hunt
                          The Thompson Family - 1792 - 1992                                                         Lex Thompson   
Hester HUNT