Given names: 
M. E.
Given address: 
Bluff Harbour
Sheet No: 341

Originally transcribed as H E Bertrand

Biography contributed by Katherine Blakeley

Mary Elizabeth Labatt was born in 1854 in Victoria, Australia – the daughter of Edmund Albert Labatt and Elizabeth Jane Elliot.

She married James Robert Bertrand, H M Customs, at St John’s, Westport on 6 December 1871.

They had five children, one who died in infancy - the family moved to Bluff in the mid 1870s.

In 1882, at a concert in the Athenaeum hall in Bluff to raise funds for a new organ, Mary’s 'rendering of “My laddie far away” and “Beautiful Isle of the Sea” was very pleasing and much appreciated.'

Mary signed the suffrage petition at Bluff.

James died at their home in 1910 and Mary died at her daughter’s home on 25 March 1917, they are buried in the family grave in the Bluff Cemetery.         

Her obituary said 'her bright and cheery disposition kept her in the centre of social activities, and herself and family had a full share in making the history of the place.' She 'actively associated herself in the formation of such desirable institution as the Athenaeum etc., her main work was, however in connection with the interests of St. Matthew’s Church, in which for many years she was president of the Ladies’ Guild, discharging her duties with conspicuous ability.'


BDM online NZ

Otago Nominal Index

Papers Past

Invercargill City Council

Victoria University

BDM Victoria

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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