Florence Davis

Florence Davis is one of the many women who signed the 1892 women's suffrage petition, but appears not to have signed the better-known 1893 suffrage petition.

Biography contributed by her grandson, Brian Davis

My grandmother Florence Davis was born in Deptford Kent on 26 November 1858 oldest child of James Holloway, fitter and turner, and his wife Emma Reeve. The family moved around England but were settled in Hammersmith London by 1881 where Florence met and married carpenter John Davis. Two children, Win and Ivo, were born in London before the family emigrated to New Zealand in 1886, Ivo dying on the voyage. They settled in Mount Eden Auckland, John prospering as a builder and contractor. Five more children were born in Mount Eden, the couple buying a number of properties in the area, some being registered in Florence’s name, possibly for electoral advantage as John was very active in local body politics. The family moved to Takapuna in 1916/17 into a two storey wooden home built by John Davis.

Florence was active in the Takapuna Methodist Church and died at her home in 1953, aged 94.

Of her six surviving children, Win stayed home, looked after her parents and effectively brought up her younger siblings. Stan. had a long career in the Union Steamship Co retiring as manager of the Wellington Branch office. Florence Mary (Dorrie) worked for much of her life in Auckland business offices, Alan followed his father into the building trade while Geoff studied law in Auckland, went on his OE, marrying and having two sons, including the writer. He returned to Auckland from Cardiff, Wales in 1942 as Professor of Law. Gwen married in 1932 but the marriage was short lived.

 

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