Given names: 
Mary Jane
Given address: 
Dome Valley
Sheet No: 379
Dome Valley
Auckland region

Biography contributed by Bernadette Siebert

Mary Jane Phillips is the daughter of Isaac and Ann Phillips. Isaac Phillips was born in 1836 in Theddlethorpe, Lincolnshire, England. He married in 1857 in Great Grimsby, Lincolnshire to Ann COULAM. They had two children in England they brought out to Melbourne, Australia in 1861 aboard the ‘Donald Mckay’, and then followed his brothers who were farming near Warkworth, NZ. Then a further eight children registered in Mahurangi.

Mary Jane was born in 1872 the ninth child of Isaac and Ann Phillips.

In January 1897 Mary Jane probably attended a wedding at the Dome Valley Wesleyan Church between her brother George Phillips and Elizabeth Wedding, both from local families. Three years later, in 1900 Mary Jane married Henry Wedding. So,  brother and sister married brother and sister. For a time they lived in the Dome Valley but by 1905 they were living in Salisbury Street, Parnell, Auckland where Henry was a shipwright. They had four children:

  • Henry Wilfrid (1901-1940)
  • Edith Mary (1903-1970)
  • Alma Barbara (1905-1975)
  • Adrian Philip (1914-1975)

Sometime after 1911 the family moved to their last address at Koraha Road in Remuera. Henry was admitted to the Mental Hospital, Avondale and died there in 1921 aged 58 years. The coroner’s verdict was exhaustion from chronic brain disease and cardiac failure. Mary Jane lived on at the same address with her daughter, until her death in 1931.

Mary Jane made a will and appointed her son Henry Wilfrid, a schoolteacher as executor. The will was written just one week before her death. One of the witnesses said that the testatrix was in bed and unable to sit up which accounted for the shakiness of her signature, but that she fully understood when the will was read to her. Her first directive was that her house in Koraka Street, Remuera was to remain unsold as long as an unmarried child wanted to live there. Her daughter Edith was a nurse and never married. The effects were valued under £2200 and to be shared equally. Henry and Mary Jane are buried together in the Purewa Cemetery, Auckland. The local newspaper reported, 'We also regret to note the death of Mrs Henry Wedding who for many years resided at Dome Valley, and for some time was organist of the Methodist Church.'

Mary Jane is the daughter of Ann Phillips #379 on the petition


Historical BDM

Archway National Archives 

NZ Herald 27 Jan 1897

Auckland Star 27 1931

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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