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THE FUNERAL.

Not since "William Sef ton Moorhouse was borne to his grave at Riccarton had Christchurch seen a gathering such as that at the funeral of the Hon William Reeves yesterday. Three in the afternoon wag the hour fixed for the funeral to leave Risingholme, and when that hour came the road leading to the house was thronged with the carriages which were to follow the hearae. Within the gateH were the coaches for the members of the family and other mourners, and on the lawn stood the employees of the Lyttelton Times Company and others who had elected to follow afoot. The hearse, a plain vehicle with glass sides, drew up before the door of the house, and four men bore forth the coffin, of polished rimu and kauri, covered with a violet pall and heaped high with wreaths, crosses and bouqueta. It was placed in the hearse and slowly the procession passed out of the gates. Closely following the hearse were the carriages with the chief mourners, the pall-bearers, and a few other intimate friends of the deceased gentlemen. The chief mourners were his sons, the Hon W. F. Keeve3, and Messrs E. C, G. B. and H. M. Reeves, with their cousin, Mr A. W. Eeeves. The pall-bearers were Messrs T. W. Maude, F. de C. Malet, W. Montgomery, L. Harper, J. T. Matson and J. C. Wilkin. Mr J. D. Lance, who was to have helped to bear the pall, was unavoidably absent. After these carriages, marched, in fonrs, upwards of a hundred of the employees of the Lyttelton Times Company and other mourners. Then canio a long line of carriages and other vehicles, some sixty or thereabouts. Along the Opawa road and Gasworks road the funeral train passed to Barbadoes street, by which it went to the Church of England Cemetery. Waiting to receive the corpse at the Cemetery gate was the revered Bishop Harper, with the Ven Archdeacon Cholmondeley by his side. In a voice whose broken accents showed his grief and agitation, he uttered the solemn words with which the burial service opens, while the body of his old friend was borne into the chapel. As many of the mourners as could find room followed, while the Times office staff passed behind the building to the southern 6ide of the cemetery, where they formed a hollow square about the open grave. Sooa the coffin was borne within the square, divested of its pall and its wealth of floral adornment, and lowered into the grave, while the Bishop read the concluding part of the service, and the assembled people joined reverently in the responses. After the Benediction many pressed forward for a last look into the grave. What they saw was a polished wooden lid, with a small silver plate, bearing the words "William Eeeves, died April 4, 1891 ; aged 66." On the lowered coffin flower sprays were cast by members of the family and personal friends. There weru, too, some sprigs of acacia thrown into the grave, for the deceased gentleman iu long ago years joined the Masonic fraternity in company j with Crosbie Ward; and by his strong desire one of his sons recently became a member of the Craft. The wreaths taken off the coffin were not buried with it, but, when the interment was complete, were carefully arranged on the grave. One of the most beautiful was that sent by the Bishop of Christchurch and Mrs Julius. Another was sent, in the true spirib of journalistic fraternity, by the Directors of the Otago Daily Times. Mr George Penwick, the Managing Director of that newspaper, also sent one as a token of his personal esteem. Other ' wreaths were placed on the coffin on ! behalf of the New Zealand Press Association, the Master Printers' Association, the literary and commercial staffs and the companionships of the Lytlelton Times Office, and of a number of private friends. The gathering iu the Cemetery was, as has been said above, of a thoroughly representative character. All the public bodies and business Companies with which Mr Keeve3 was connected, had members there. The Hon B. J. Seddon, Minister for Public Works, at the special request of the Premier, officially represented the Government. The Legislature was represented by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Major Steward, and by several m«mber3 of both Chambers. The Bench, the Bar, the various learned professions, the Christchurch Musical Society and the Canterbury Jockey Club, all had their members there to honour the deceased gentleman. Among tho3e present were seen his Honor Mr Justice Denniston, His Honor Judge Ward, tho Kev P. Knowles, the Rev W. Dunkley, the Rev Father Laverty. the Hons C. C. Bowen and J. T. Peacock, Mr George Fisher, M.H.R. (one of Mr Reeve3* old employees), Messrs J. Joyce, W. B. Perceval, W. W. Tanner, M.H.R.V , Me3SM E. S. Harley, F. J. Kimbell, J. J. Kiiisey, J. H. Baker, G. D. Greenwood, A. M. Oliivier, W. S. Robison, E. Curry, A. C. Rolteßton, C. H. Williams, F. Strouts, Thoma3 Ward, J. V. Colborne-Veel, R. Boetbam, R.M., H. H. Pitman, A. G. Howland, J. M'Namara, C. Clark, E. W. Humphreys, J. Gaues, E. C. Latter, J. P. Jameson, Cowlishaw jun., H. Cotterill, R. Allan, W. Jameson, J. M. Heywood, J. S. Guthrie. P. Tendall, A. Boyle, W. R. Mitchell, J. E. March, J. Townsend, G. Harper, G. G. Stead. J. L. Scott, J. G. Scott, R. Westenra, H. P. Hill, Maitland Gard'ner, R. Sutherland, R. C. Bishop, F. Trent, C. F. Corlett, T. Gapes, H. K. Webb, F. Wildinp, G. Tombs, M'Clea. T. Ritchie, C. W. Turner, C. J. Owen, A. Cox, S. Fraukish (representing Dr Frankish, who waa too unwell to attend), Professors Cook and Uaslam, Captain Gaisia and Dr Foatcr. Many other gentlemen well-known

in the community were present, but it was difficult to distinguish individuals in the dense throng. The family deßire to express their heartfelt thanks for the beautiful floral tokens of regard, and for the many messages of condolence, including letters and telegrams from all parts of the Colony.

Our Springfield correspondent writes :— A thxiil, a shock went through the whole community on th« arrival of this (Monday) morning's* Lyttelton Times. No word had previously heralded the news that a life of pre-eminent usefulness was ebbing out, and it was only oil turning to the blackedged columns of the paper that the mournful event waa revealed. Deep sympathy is felt for the family so suddenly bereaved — a family whose name is made for all time illustrious in the annals of the Colony by the energy and indomitable perseverance with which it3 founder advocated every cause having for its object the advancement of his fellow-Colonists. Those who, like myself, knew him not intimately, sincerely respected, nay, rather loved the man for the sake of what they knew him to be— all that was just and honourable, and inflexible ia what he considered the cau3e of right. Let our humble tribute be laid on his bier, among the garlands he has nobly won. The Otago Daily Times, in closing an obituary notice of the late Mr Beeves, says : — " He has performed his part as a true Colonist, and has died beloved by the family whom he loved so well, and respected by those who had the pleasure of his acquaintance."

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/TS18910407.2.35

Bibliographic details

THE FUNERAL., Star, Volume 07, Issue 7131, 7 April 1891

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1,225

THE FUNERAL. Star, Volume 07, Issue 7131, 7 April 1891

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