Topic: John Chidley Reynolds (1846-1876)

Topic type:

John Chidley Reynolds died of pneumonia on 24 March 1876 in Ohinemutu. His body was moved to Tauranga and he was buried in Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā). He does not have a headstone.

John Chidley Reynolds  was born at South Sydenham in Devon, England on 12 March 1846. His parents were William and Elizabeth Reynolds (nee Chidley).

On 5 February 1868 John arrived in New Zealand with his parents and siblings on board the ship 'Maori'.

The 'Maori' was a 703-ton sailing ship under Captain D T Roberts which became caught up in 'The Great Storm of 1868'. After experiencing severe gales on 25 December 1867, on 31 January 1868, during the voyage from London to Auckland, the 'Maori' was caught up in a cyclone to the north of New Zealand near the Three Kings Islands. By 6pm the barometer had fallen and the sea was heavy with a strengthening gale.

The gale continued to strengthen throughout the evening and by midnight those on board were experiencing violent squalls and rain. Throughout the following day the wind turned towards the south and increased in intensity. By 2 February the wind had died away as the ship reached the centre of the cyclone, but by 2pm began to return to cyclonic strength. By the 3rd of February the weather had improved significantly and the ship reached New Zealand safely on 5 February 1868. 40 people had been killed as the storm swept across New Zealand.

John joined the Cambridge Cavalry Volunteers in January 1872 but did not serve. 

National Archives in Wellington hold a letter dated 10 January 1873 which is signed by J C Reynolds as Secretary of the Cambridge District Board.

John died of pneumonia at Ohinemutu in Rotorua on 24 March 1876 (reg. 1876/471). He was buried in Tauranga's Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā) on 28 March 1876. The Bay of Plenty Times reported:

In our telegraphic columns on Saturday last, a short notice appeared that Mr John Reynolds, of Cambridge, had died at Ohinemutu on Friday morning The deceased gentleman, who was in the prime of life, was visiting the Lakes in the company of some friends, but was taken suddenly ill at Ohinemutu, and expired in a few days. The remains of the deceased were brought to town on Saturday with the intention of taking them to his late home in the Waikato, where his friends reside, but some obstacle arising, the deceased was buried in the Tauranga Cemetery at Archdeacon's Point, yesterday morning; a large number of the residents in the district attending the funeral, among who were several of the personal friends of the deceased now residing in Tauranga (29 March 1876, p. 2).

There is no headstone for John in Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā).



Bay of Plenty Times (29 March 1876, p. 2).

Births, Deaths and Marriages Online (New Zealand).

Cambridge Museum: Biographies - Q and R. 

Daily Southern Cross (6 February 1868, p. 2): Arrival of the Ship Maori from London.

Daily Southern Cross (6 February 1868, p. 2): The Ship Maori in a Cyclone.

Ministry for Culture and Heritage: Killer storm sweeps the country.

Wikipedia: Great storm of 1868.

Discuss This Topic

There are 0 comments in this discussion.

join this discussion

John Chidley Reynolds (1846-1876)

First Names:John Chidley
Last Name:Reynolds
Date of Birth:12 March 1846
Place of Birth:South Sydenham, Devon
Country of birth:England
Date of death:24 March 1876
Place of death:Ohinemutu, Rotorua
Place of burial:Tauranga - Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā)
Date of Arrival:5 February 1868
Name of the ship:Maori
Fathers name:William Reynolds
Fathers date of birth:1821
Fathers place of birth:Advent, Devon, England
Fathers date of death:28 September 1891
Fathers place of death:Cambridge, New Zealand
Mothers name:Elizabeth Chidley
Mothers date of birth:1823
Mothers place of birth:Milton Abott, Devon, England
Mothers date of death:06 October 1909
Mothers place of death:Bootle, Cumberland, England