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Sheet No: 29

Biography contributed by Tim Brosnahan

Honorah Toohey (born 16 September 1868; died 20 June 1961)

Her parents Matthew and Mary Toohey (nee Eagleton) moved to Leithfield, Canterbury to farm shortly after getting married in Christchurch. The nine children of the marriage were all born in Leithfield.  Honorah (Nora) was the eldest girl, and she and her younger sister Marie signed the petition. Honora had several suitors wanting to court her, and sought the advice of the Parish priest. His reply was 'Well, Pat Brosnahan's a fine man'. Pat had been visiting relatives in nearby Amberley and like Nora, was a staunch Catholic. Together, they started a life together at Rosewill, South Canterbury which had recently been broken up from a large estate. Nora’s brother William Toohey also started a farm in South Canterbury at Lyalldale.

Honora Toohey was born on 16 Sep 1868 in Leithfield, died on 20 Jun 1961 in Timaru at age 92, and was buried in Temuka.


Other names for Honora were Nora and Hanoria Toohey.

Noted events in her life were:

  • She was educated in 1875 in Leithfield.
  • She resided in 1896 in Leithfield. She put her occupation as "domestic duties".
  • She resided at King Road in 1954 in Rosewill, Timaru.
  • She resided at 20 Newman St Timaru in 1961 where she died; she was living there with her daughter and son-in-law

Honora married Patrick Brosnahan, son of John Brosnahan and Hanorah O'Driscoll, on 26 Apr 1898 in Brackenbridge, Amberley.

Marriage Notes: Brosnahan - Toohey. April 26, at Brackenbridge, by the Rev Father Treacy, Patrick Brosnahan, of Temuka, to Honoria (Norah), eldest daughter of Mr M. Toohey, Leithfield. (Lyttelton Times; 9th May 1898)

Her death record has her marriage place as 'Brackenfield, Mount Grey' but this was the name of the farm where the church was built.


Honorah Brosnahan.

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

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