Clement-Jones family - Person Sheet
Clement-Jones family - Person Sheet
NameJohn Alexander GILFILLAN, 2736
MotherElizabeth BRIDGES , 2646
Notes for John Alexander GILFILLAN


John and his wife Mary and their children sailed in the "Mandarin" to New Zealand, arriving in Wellington on Christmas Day 1841. Mary Jane Gilfillan remembered there was an earthquake which occurred when the boat was in mid-ocean. The family did not proceed to Wanganui immediately on their arrival in Wellington. By early 1842 they had moved to Wanganui, sailing in a small 10 ton boat "Catherine Johnson".

In 1847 Mr Gilfillan's farmhouse at Matarawa was attacked by a party of six Maori youths.Mrs Gilfillan and three children were killed and later another daughter and a grand-daughter died of injuries. Mr Gilfillan wore a throat cover to hide the scar caused by the severe tomahawk wound he received in his neck and his daughter Mary had scars from tomahawk wounds on her forehead. Mr Gilfillan was an artist of considerable talent and his pencil sketches and oil paintings are important records of early New Zealand and Australia.

THeir son John escaped being hurt in the massacre by jumping in to a ditch and he slept the night in the bracken ferns with his sister Sarah. At day-break they walked towards the two and were met by a party of settlers. After refreshments they were taken to Putuki Mission and carried by Hoani Wirimu Hipango.
Last Modified 18 Aug 2009Created 2 Apr 2024 using Reunion for Macintosh