The Grant-Ussher Family

Frederick Arthur Grant-Ussher

Birth: 9 October 1889, in Caversham, Dunedin, New Zealand

Father: William Neville Grant Ussher

Mother: Jane Margaret (Blair) Grant-Ussher

Education: Kaikorai Valley School

Occupation: Farmer

Notes: Known as Ted. Fred enlisted in the Otago Mounted Rifles, in the 3rd Reinforcements of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force during World War I. He embarked for Egypt on 14 February 1915. On 22 June 1915, his father received the following letter:
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 22 June 1915 p5
Mr W. N. Grant-Ussher received a  letter by a recent mail from his son, Fred, who left Otautau to join the third reinforcements, and is now "somewhere" fighting for the Empire. No place was mentioned in the letter, and no postmark appeared on the envelope. The letter stated: "We are on a beach in the thick of it, the work is glorious, and I wouldn't have missed it for worlds. I have been promoted to sergeant, and am enjoying the life."

Fred was promoted to sergeant, forfeited his promotion in order to get to the frontlines, was re-promoted in the Dardanelles and died on 7 July 1915, at Gallipoli.

Death: 7 July 1915, in action at Gallipoli, Ottoman Empire, aged 26. Frederick was a sergeant in the Otago Mounted Rifles, of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force. He is listed as a native of Caversham, Dunedin, New Zealand.
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 10 August 1915 p5
Killed in Action.
  The late Sergt. Fred A. Grant-Ussher, who was killed in action at the Dardanelles on 7th July, was the second son of Mr W. N. Grant-Ussher, of Otautau. He was born at Caversham 25 years ago, and was educated at the Kaikorai Valley School. After leaving school, he was engaged with his father farming on the Taieri and Edendale, and latterly at Otautau. He was very anxious to join the Main Expeditionary Force, but could not get away, subsequently leaving with the Third Contingent as a mounted trooper. While he was in Egypt, he was promoted to sergeant, but forfeited his promotion in order to get to the front with the infantry, subsequently being re-promoted after arrival at the Dardanelles. He was a very keen footballer, having founded the Menzies Ferry Club, for which he played before coming to Otautau, when he joined the Otautau club, and last season played for Orawia, of which club he was secretary. He was a very popular young fellow all round the district. Several relations of deceased are m the fighting line in France and elsewhere, and he was a distant relative of the late Lord Roberts, so that he had fighting blood in his veins.

Sadly, it was nearly two weeks after Fred's death that his family received another letter from him, telling them how he was "at Gallipoli and is well". The news was reported in the Otautau Standard, with all concerned unaware that Fred was already dead.
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 20 July 1915 p5
Mr Grant-Ussher has received news from his son, Fred, who is a sergeant in the mounted force. He is at Gallipoli and is well.

No. 2 Outpost Cemetery
No. 2 Outpost Cemetery in Turkey, where Frederick is buried
Buried: New Zealand No. 2 Outpost Cemetery, Turkey, grave B.11. His name is also inscribed on the Soldier's Memorial in Otautau, Southland, New Zealand.


George Blair Grant-Ussher

Birth: 1 April 1891, in New Zealand

Father: William Neville Grant Ussher

Mother: Jane Margaret (Blair) Grant-Ussher

Married: Margaret Helen Johnston in 1929 in Invercargill, New Zealand.
Margaret was born on 4 April 1899, in Invercargill, the daughter of John Smith Johnston and Jesse Isabella Welsh. She died on 29 July 1982, in Oamaru, New Zealand.

Occupation: Farmer

Known as 'Scott". George served in World War I, leaving New Zealand with the 25th Reinforcements, Otago Infantry Regiment, D Company. His send-off from Otautau is described in the Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 10 April 1917 p3
Send-offs to Soldiers.
  Friends from far and near assembled at Mr W. N. Grant Ussher's home on Wednesday, 4th inst., the occasion being to give Private Geo. Grant Ussher a hearty send-off before leaving New Zealand with the 25th Reinforcements. Mr Ussher, snr's commodious barn was prepared and ready, so that everyone was able to sit and enjoy the splendid social rendered by a number of talented artists. Mr Wm. Walker, Stretton, occupied the chair, and proceedings were opened by the singing of the National Anthem, after which the following contributed items; Songs Mesdames J. T. Brooker, T. H. Cupples, H. Millar aud Messrs A. Anderson, Paul Brown, D. E. Grieve and Private J. Kerr, jnr. ; recitation, Miss M. Willis, all receiving were merited applause. Mrs T. H. Cupples played the accompaniments in her usual fine style. At a suitable interval during the social, the Chairman arose and made a few appropriate remarks about the chief object of the gathering, with which he had much pleasure in presenting Private Ussher, on behalf of the district residents, with a handsome wristlet watch. The audience rising and singing 'For He's a Jolly Good Fellow.' Other gentlemen who endorsed the Chairman's words were Messrs P. Beggs, John Dickson, A. Robson, D. Macpherson and R. Donnelly. Private Ussher then replied, thanking everyone present for the way in which they had attended his send-off and also for the tine present he was the recipient of. In a jovial way the speakor mentioned that he had been off Trentham stew for a week and consequently was not m good form for speechifying, the audience belying this statement with a round of applause. The younger ladies present then attended to the serving of a fine supper, after which Private Ussher was handed a pipe in case, which his father had accepted from the Otautau Committee for him. Mr Ussher, snr., then spoke and mentioned that it was unfortunate that owing to Easter Holidays and other soldiers timetables, the two social functions, one at his bouse and one at Otautau, had to be held on the same evening, occasioning his son to attend one only and he to act as his representative at the other. However, things had worked out A. I. and everybody was apparently quite happy.
  The barn was then cleared and dancing gone on with to music supplied by Messrs J. Carrol, Paul Brown and A. Willis, while Mr F. Marshall acted as M.C.
  It proved a difficult matter during Easter week to avoid socials to soldiers clashing one with another, aud so it happened that on Wednesday night, when Otautau wished to have its foregathering of friends to bid Au Rovoir to Privates George Ussher, J. Kerr and Victor Clark, these soldiers were wanted elsewhere for similiar functions. However, a pleasant little gathering tock place in the Town Hall, and although from the reasons given, the attendance was not by any means up to expectations, still the proceedings were very enjoyable, as there was ample room for dancing. These functions in the township have hitherto taken the form of a smoke concert, and have been exclusively attended by the sterner sex. Wednesday's gathering was a new departure, and the initiation of a new order which will appeal to the public, and similiar meetings throughout the winter to departing boys are likely to become very popular.
  Private Ussher unfortunately, could not be present, and was represented by his father. Private James Kerr was present, and assisted in the musical part of the programme. Private Victor Clark sent an apology for unavoidable absence at his parent's house in Kaitangata.
  Mr J. Fisher acted as Chairman, and at a convenient interval, on behalf of the Soldier's Send-off Committee, presented small mementos to each of the three guestes, Private Ussher receiving a pipe, and Privates Kerr and Clark a razor each. The presentation was spoken to by the Chairman and Mr Tonkinson, and responded to by Mr Grant-Ussher, senr., mid Private Kerr.
  Musical items wore contributed by various friends, and a social half-hour, with refreshments, enjoyed, after which dancing was again indulged in for an hour or two.
  These gatherings bid fair this winter to take the place of the Tennis Club's Euchre Socials of a couple of years ago, and the public may rest assured of pleasant evening's entertainment on each occassion.

Death: 13 June 1964, in New Zealand, aged 73


Mary Ann (Grant-Ussher) Crawford

Birth: 25 June 1893, in New Zealand

Father: William Neville Grant Ussher

Mother: Jane Margaret (Blair) Grant-Ussher

Married: George Crawford on 25 March 1925 in St Andrew's Church, Otautau, Southland, New Zealand.
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 31 March 1925 p2
At the Anglican Church, Otautau, on 25th March, 1925, Mary Ann, only daughter of Wm. Neville Grant- Ussher, to George Crawford, Fairfax.

Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 31 March 1925 p3
  An interesting marriage was solmenised in St. Andrew's Church on Wednesday last, when two well-known residents of the district were joined together in Holy Matrimony. The contracting parties were Miss Mary Ann Grant-Ussher, only daughter of Mr William Neville Grant-Ussher, Merrivale Road, and late of Youghal, Ireland, and the late Mrs Grant-Ussher, and Mr George Crawford, and the officiant at the ceremony was the Vicar (Rev. G. A. Dawson). The church was very effectively decorated, aud reflected great credit ou Mrs Rountree, who made herself responsible for this. Two floral arches and a bowl were most artistically arranged in purple (the litargical colour for the season) and white for the occasion, and the white bell decorated with a wreath of flowers completed a most pleasing effect. Miss Peggy Stewart presided at the organ, playing Keble's hymn to Gauntlett's well-kuown tune, L.Alphege, and one of Schubert's Impromptus.
  The bride wore a beautiful white figured silk morocain with a flowing veil and coronet of orange blossoms, and carried a sheaf of lilies. The bridesmaid, Miss Chapman, cousin of the bride, wore a pretty white crepe de chine dress with black hat to match, and carried a bouquet of asters. Mr Hugh Crawford assisted the bridegroom, his brother.
  The bride entered the Church on the arm of her father, who gave her away, and the party were grouped at chancel step. The bridal party and guests assembled in a barn at the home of the bride, which was magnificently adorned with shrubs and flowers. The table was laden with good things, and, although the proceedings were necessarily of a quiet nature, the breakfast was a happy feature of the event. The Vicar occupied the chair, and in proposing the health of the bride and bridegroom he mentioned how very much pleasure and indeed help he had derived from his acquaintance with the Ussher family. He emphasised the serious nature of the event which they had seen performed, an aspect which was sadly overlooked in an age when divorce was all too prevalent. There would have to be mutual understanding, give and take, if there was to be mutual happiness, which fact he illustrated by telling a story of a rather humorous incideut which pccured a few years ago. All present desired to express their good wishes for the future happiness and health of the newly-married couple. The usual other toasts were honoured, and the National Anthem sung at the close of the proceedings. The happy couple motored to Invercargill en route on their honeymoon trip. They were the recipients of many lovely, useful, and costly gifts, which showed the esteem in wliich both were held. The bride travelled in a coat frock of dark blue gabardine with blue and grey hat to match. Congratulatory telegrams were read from many friends, including Mr Crawford's brothers: Robert, captain R.M.M.S. "Aorangi"; William, station holder, Cave; Oswald, factory manager, Eltham; and James, Government grader, at Patea. Among the guests were: Mesdames Rooney, McKay Johnston, and Blair, the Misses Blair, Crawford, Johnston, Wilson, and Twemlow, Messrs Blair (uncle of the bride), McKay, Wilson, and George and William Grant-Usshcr.

On their return from their honeymoon, another celebration was held in honour of George and Mary Ann.
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 28 April 1925 p2
Social Notes.
A large and happy crowd gathered at the residence of Messrs Crawford Bros., Fairfax, on Friday evening to welcome home Mr and Mrs George Crawford. A very enjoyable evening was spent in dancing, while songs were given by Messrs Hall, Smith, Crawford and Anderson. During the evening a presentation on behalf of the Fairfax factory suppliers was made. Mr T. F. Smith, in making it, spoke of the many sterling qualities of Mr Crawford, and wished them health, happiness and prosperity. Messrs Helm, Tait and Hall added their good wishes, after which Mr Crawford replied. A plenteous supper was then partaken of, Mrs George Crawford and Miss Crawford doing all in their power to make the evening enjoyable. In the early hours, after dancing themselves tired, the happy crowd sung "Auld Lang Syne" and after the usual few words all departed for their various homes well satisfied with the evenings outing.

George was a farmer in Fairfax, Southland. He initially farmed with his brother, Hugh, and in 1923, when his brother joined the Southland Farmers' Co-op, he took over the farm on his own.
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 21 August 1923 p2
Mr H. Crawford, of Fairfax, who, with his brother, has carried on farming pursuits for the last few years, has taken a position with the Southland Farmers' Co-op Association, and takes over the Otautau Agency about the beginning of the month. Mr George Crawford will carry on the farm in his own interests.

Notes: Known as Missy or May

Death: 1926


William Neville Grant-Ussher

Birth: 24 May 1888

Father: William Neville Grant Ussher

Mother: Jane Margaret (Blair) Grant-Ussher

William was known as Tim.
Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle 21 December 1926 p3
Alleged Theft.
  William Grant-Ussher was charged in the Invercargill Police Court, last Tuesday morning, before Messrs James Ward and Noble J's P., with having received 49 16s 7d on terms requiring him to account for same to the Wallace County Council, and with having fraudulently omitted to do so.
  Accused had been employed by the Wallace County Council to oollect the dog tax in certain ridings. He collected the money all right but kept it himself.
  Constable Boyle, of Nightcaps, gave evidence as to an interview he had with accused on November 29, when he made a statement admitting offence.
  Accused did not wish to say anything but pleaded guilty to the charge and was committed to the Supreme Court for sentence. He was released on bail in his own cognisance of
100 and in one surety of 100.

Death: 1931, in New Zealand, aged 43

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