♦ • JAMES SINCLAIE. Died August 9th, 1897. Aged 79 years. Very few men have done Marlborough be.tter service in times, past than Mr. James Sinclair — Father of Blenheim, as he has been affectionately termed. All who know the histpiy of the provincial district must recognise the loyalty and ability with which he fought its battles and furthered its interests in the .early days; and all who had the happiness of his personal acquaintance will be,ar, witness to his unselfishness, his liberality, and kindness of heart. Many a one has he helped, never a onq did he knowingly, do an ill turn to. "We speak from an acquaintance of nearly forty years, and we affirm unhesitatingly that in all the ups and downs of life we found him ever the same. And as in his prosperity he had, used his means liberally for the general good ; so in the less fortunate days that succeeded he had the eympathy and the kindly word of all, and, though his, death was not unexpected, his loss is and will long be deeply regretted. As a pattern for the emulation of those who have now, and will have in the future, the shaping of the destinies of Marlborough, we briefly sketch bis career. A scion of an old Highland stock— a Caithness family — he came out to New Zealand in the prime of- manhood 45 years ago, and started in business at Nelson. Hearing very favourable reports of the Wairau, however-, he came to take stock of it, and being greatly impressed with its capabilities and prospects determined, although the AYairau massacre was still fresh in men's memories, to migrate thither. Prospering greatly* he put himself in the forefront of every, movement to send the district ahead, and was one of the active leaders of the separation agitation whic,h, having its mainspring in a_ feeling that the., district was. not being fairly treated, resulted in the creation of the Province of Marlborough. In, the Provincial Council, from first to last, right up to- the abolition of the provinces in 1876, he was a. recognised leader, though never Superintendent. He tried hard to get Blenheim adopted as the capital of the colony, but, failing in that, left no stone unturned to get it made the capital of the province, and. ultimately, with, the assistance of Mr. W. H. ijJyes and the late Mr. Henry Dodson, succeeded in, gej/jiing. the Government offices removed from P,ictoa.tp Blenheim, a course of policy which of course offended Picton, residents greatjy, but. in which we believe. Mr. Sinclair, was, honestly, striving to do what he deemed the best thingfor the proviuce. He may have been— we think he was— mistaken, but ha was honest. After the abolition of' the provinces.' he took no prominent part in politics, but displayed, a warm interest in quentions of river conservation, and in Blenheim municipal affairs, manifesting often an ability which would, have adorned, a larger sphere pf debate. In his wealthy days the " Kirk " found in him a " nursing father/ indeed it is hardly too much to say that the Presbyterian Church originally owed its existence, in Blenheim to his open-hauded liberality. He will be long remembered as one of Blenheim's best citizens and Maryborough's most loyal sons. Having served his generation by the will of God he fell asleep in the presence of hjs children last Monday, at the ripe age of 79. They have the satisfaction of knowing that
he was appreciated in life and deeply/moursetl in his death. The funeral took place oa Wednesday afternoon, and was largely attended, the cortege being ve.ry lengthy.— Marlborough Press, 13th August-
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IN MEMORIAM., Evening Post, Volume LIV, Issue 42, 18 August 1897
IN MEMORIAM. Evening Post, Volume LIV, Issue 42, 18 August 1897
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