THE LATE SAMUEL HENRY DREW, F.L.S.
The subject of this brief memoir, whose awfully sudden death yesterday it is our melancholy duty to record, came to Wangswiui from Nelson with his brother, Mr. Alfred Drew, now residing in Palmerston North, in the year 1870, and started in business mr watchmakers.' and jewellers, etc., in a .small shop on Taupo Quay, alongside; where the old Post Office and Custom House used to be, and where the Metropolitan HoteL now stands. The Drew brotlli'ers. of whom the late Samuel Henry was the elder, were then quite young men, and both bachelors. In the little shop referred to the brothera worKed oh together, living on the premises at the rear of the shop, "shifting for themselves," so to speak, and working steadily and industriously at their business. -Later'on, Mr.S. H. Drew went to Nelson again for a. brief period, but returned to »viaaiganui with a wife —the daughter of th« late Mr. Beatson, of Nelson, a well'-kno'wii/ architect, etc. The brothers not long after this parted company, Mr. Alfred Drew going to New Plymouth, where he embarked in business on his own account, or, perhaps strictly speaking1, with the assistance of. his elder brother, the subject of this notice. The late Mr. Drew, by his perseverance, industry, and skill in tifos prosecution of his business, soon got on and forged ahead; Isu much so that he found the little shop on | Taupo Quay too small, and contracted for | the purposes of his increasing business, [ and, .consequently, shifted into larger 'premises in Victoria Avenue—the present i shop, which quite recently has been considerably enlarged and improved. This move took place about 1894, or thereabouts, Mr. Drew, in common with otiier j business men in Wanganui, then finding ! the Avenue a better thorougMare for trade ! and business generally than Taupo Quay. (The bridge over the river had been built and thrown open to the public in 1872, and, as a consequence, the stream of tranic was directed to a Large extent from Taupo Quay to the Avenue.) Going back to tne late Mr. Divav's early life^his boyhood and youth-—it is interesting to state that he waa born in London; that he came out with his parents to Victoria (Melbourne) and Tasmania, in the early fifties, wfaere his father was engaged in business for some years; that he returned to London later f> complete his knowledge and training in the business of a watchmaker and jeweller in Benson's well-known establishment, Oa Bond Street, to whom he was apprenticed. Having served his apprenticeship, he came out to the colonies again and joined the family in Nelson, where he assisted ms father in the business for some years. This was in the early sixties, and Nelson was | quite a small place then. Here he lived and worked on until he "shifted his pegs to Wanganui, and started on his oivn account, as already stated. It is interesting to mention here that the late Samuel Henry Drew took an active and leading part in the search and capture of the notorious Kelly gang (not the aa-me Kelly gang, however, that kept the police at bay for many months in Victoria), but infamous, murderous Kelly-Burgess-Levy-Sullivan gang who "stuck up" and murdered several gol<f-seekers and surveyors in 1868 near Nelson, and known throughout the colonies as the Maungatapa murders. A large croDortion of the adult male population of Nelson turned out at tho time, and for several weeks werfe engaged in searching and Scouring the ranges and rough country for many miles around Nelson, and the late S. H. Drew was one of the party. The murdering ruffians were at liast run to earth, tried, convicted, and executed within the precincts of Nelson Gaol, with the exception of Sullivan who turned Queen's evidence a-gainst his partisans in crime, and thus saved Ibis own neck from the gallows-! The late Mr. Drew used to tell some thrilling stories of the adventures, hardships, and break-neck escapes that he and many others with him experienced in their search for, and capture of, the infamous Kel-y-Burgess-Levy gang. Of the late Mr. Drew's close association with the improvement . and advancement of Wanganui since he first came to this town in 1870, it is needless here to enlarge upon. All thvs is well known to everybody who has resided in Wanganui for any length of time.- It is sufficient to point to the great and active interest he took in sport of one kind and another—rowing more especially; music —the oil Choral Society, the Harmonic Society, and Christ Church Choir, together with Mr. J. G. Woon and others.; the Orchestral Club, and quite recently the Wan-1 ganui Lie-lortafel But it is as a naturalist"1 and as the founder of our splendid Museum that the name of Samuel Henry Drew will HteV- '■■*&&&■■■': -Tntimately -associated and-H longest remembered by all sections and classes of the community. In this latter capacity, much might be written of Mr. Drew. Suffice it to say just now that as a. . natiiralisfc the late | Mr. Drew had few compeers in this colony; indeed, it may be truthfully said that he had no equal in this part of New Zealand. Not so long ago he was made a Fellow of the Linnean Society of Great Britain, an honour wholly unsought on his part, and he was in frequent correspondence with several of the leading naturalists of England and the Continent of Europe, Germany, Belgium, Holland, etc. Mr. Drew was fifty-seven years of age, so that he was cut off, in an^ awfully sudden manner, at a comparatively early ■•ige. He .leaves behind him a widow—a highly-respected and greatly beloved lady —and a family of eight (four sons and four daughters). To them we beg most respectfully to tender our heartfelt sympathy and condolence in their sudden and terrible bereavement.
It was generally known of late that Mr. Drew was not in the best of health, and that he was for some time past under medical treatment. The immediate cause of death, we understand, was aneurism of the aoita(.
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THE LATE SAMUEL HENRY DREW, F.L.S., Wanganui Chronicle, 19 December 1901
THE LATE SAMUEL HENRY DREW, F.L.S. Wanganui Chronicle, 19 December 1901
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