Given names: 
Elizth M.
Given address: 
Sheet No: 156

Notes provided by Helen Edwards, who has carried out extensive research on the women who signed Sheet 156, including mappig where they lived. Download pdf of this research here.

Elizabeth MacKenzie Borrows, nee Huie [Elizth M. Borrows, Roslyn] (No. 17)

Land description: Allotment 12, Block 2, Township of Roslyn (renting). Address: (24) Michie Street. Age in 1893: 53 years.

Elizabeth (Bessie) Huie was the daughter of Aberdeen accountant Alexander Huie and Eliza Gordon Edgar. She was born in Edinburgh in 1839 or 1840. After her father’s death in 1852, her mother and some of the children, including Bessie, emigrated to Geelong, Victoria. Her eldest sister, Margaret Gordon Burn, founded the Geelong Ladies College, and was appointed the first principal of Otago Girls’ High School in Dunedin in 1871. Bessie accompanied Margaret and her children to Dunedin and taught at Otago Girls’ High School from 1871 to 1877. Her first position was as the resident music governess, and she later taught English. When Mrs Burn planned to go on leave in 1877, she recommended Miss Bessie Huie as Acting Lady Principal. Bessie’s sister Agnes taught French and German at the school and Margaret Burn’s daughter Annie Allan was a junior teacher.

In February 1880 Bessie married Glasgow-born doctor Robert Borrows, Staff Surgeon of the Royal Navy. Their only child, Marion Angus, was born in 1881, when her mother was about 41. Robert was killed in a buggy accident in November that year, at the age of 49, after eighteen months of marriage. Bessie was renting a house in Michie Street, close to her sister and family, when she signed the petition, but later moved a couple of blocks north to High street (Highgate). She died in Dunedin in 1914, aged 74, and is buried in the Northern Cemetery. Margaret Gordon Burn and her daughter Annie McLeod Allan signed Sheet 113 of the petition.

Wallis, Eileen. A most rare vision. Otago Girls’ High School Board of Trustees, 1995.

Click on sheet number to see the 1893 petition sheet this signature appeared on. Digital copies of the sheets supplied by Archives New Zealand.

How to cite this page

'Elizth M. Borrows', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 16-Oct-2018

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