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DEATH OF MR E. T. GILLON. Wellington, April 19.

Mr E. T. Gillon, the well-known journalist and editor of the Evening Post, died shortly before 4.30 this afternoon, after a long and painful illness.. Deceased passed 'away quietly in the presence of his family, He leaves three sous and two daughters. April 21. Mr E. T. Gillon's funeral took place tlr's morning. The procession, which was of considerable length despite the, heavy rain that had fallen and the threatening weather,' was headed by 40 boys from the Terrace School (of which for many years the deceased wat chair--man), each carrying a wreath. Large numbers of these floral emblems were sent in from all parts of the colony, iucludirg one from the Otago branch of the Journalists' Institute and one from the directors of the Otago Daily Times. The funeral would have been a full ! Masonic ceremony but for th«ir late brother's own rt quest to the contrary. The Premier was among the followers, who included most of the p r ific : r*l m" r ' 'i t**f city

Edward T. Gilloj wm born at Douglas, Isle of Man, in 1842, Whan he was but nine year* of age hi* parents emigrated to Otago; where they arrived in 1851. They first fettled at Waihola and afterwards near Milton, and their son bad to undergo his full thare of the rough fX|\-n«-nces ircidental to country life iv uewly-s-ttled districts. While quite a youth Mr Gilloa commenced to write for the Otago Wit.ness, his first contribution having for its subject a romantic bat tragic incident iv which a young Maori girl (the danghter of a chief) and her dusky lover were the principal actors. The story, which was said to be fvunded on fact, was well written, and was probably (he fin>t of its kind ever published in the southern pait of the Middle Island. The tragedy culminated, after a hot pursuit among the fastnesses of the coast range, between where the Taieri bridge now stands and the river mouth, in the girl and her lover, finding escape from their pursuers bopeless, throwing themselves from a pinnacle of rook into the river, and disappearing from human lren. The fatal rook is a well-known spot not far from Taieri Mouth, and ii ftill known as "The Maoris' Leap." Young G.llon displayed such a taste and aptitude for journalism that he toon joined the staff. of the Witness, receiving an engagement to report the proceedings of the Provincial Council. Iv 1861, when gold was discovered ab Gabriel's Gully, he was despatched as special correspondent of fcbe Witness, and he occupied that important position until recalled to again report the Provincial Council Among thrse attraore.l b\ th« disoovery <A gold w»» Mr (no* Sir Julius) Y*gel, who was scon convinced that with tho steady increase of population there was an op nicg for a daily paper. He foand Mr Cutten, the then proprietor of the Witnets, ready to enter into the project, and, becoming partners, they launched the Otago Daily Times — the first daily paper in New Zealand, — with Mr Gillon as chief of the leporting staff. A severe attack of illness caused Mr Gilloa to resixn his uositiqp , ftboai a

year afterward*. From ifs position, as m centre through which all the traffic to the goldfields passed, Milton became an important centre in those days, and Mr Gillon accepted tho position of editor of the Bruce Herald. In 1867 he joined the Hansard staff, and later on was appointed Parliamentary Clerk of Private Bills, but he soon resigned this for active journalistic work on the Wellington Bvening Post. He also aoted as special correspondenfc for the Otago Daily , Times. In 1872, when cable communication between Australia and Europe was established, Mr Gillon was selected as muiagrr for a combination of papers to obWn t"l graphic niiws, but he coon rej in<d the lite'wiiig Post, in 1878 the present Pxes* Astociation was formed, and Mr Gillon accepted the position of manager ; but in 1884 his liking for active journali»m proved too strong, and he resumed the position of editor of the Evening Post, a position which he has held up to his death, although for some months past he has not been ablo to undertake active work. Mr Gillon was for some brief period a member of the Wellington Provincial Council. On the formation of the New Zealand Journalists' Institute he was elected its flrot president. He was a prominent member of the Masonic body, and took a very active part in tbe movement which' resulted in the formation of the Grand Lodge of New Zealand. In recognition of hin services (as he declined to accept active tffic r ) the rank of Past Deputy Grand Master was conferred on him. As a journalist he was a vigorous aad incisive writer. His personal observation and experiences had given him a good insight into the problems which have to be solved in a young country, and proof of this was afforded when h« gained one of the parliamentary prizes offered for the best essay on the settlement or tbe people on the land. In private life Mr Gillou was of a genial disposition, ever ready to assist others lets 'fortunate, and was greatly esteemed by those who had the pleasure of bis friendship.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/OW18960423.2.74

Bibliographic details

Otago Witness, Otago Witness, Issue 2199, 23 April 1896

Word Count
884

DEATH OF MR E.T. GILLON. Wellington, April 19. Otago Witness, Issue 2199, 23 April 1896

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