Another old and respected colonist passed away rather suddenly yesterday in the person of Mr Thomas Preece. The deceased gentleman, whose age was seventy-eight years, had been in fairly good health almost up to the time of his death, but early yesterday morning he was taken ill and died within a very short time of failure of the heart's action.
died on 16 January 1898 at 39 Hereford Street, Linwood, Christchurch aged 78 years.THOMAS PREECE.
Press, Volume LV, Issue 9937, 17 January 1898, Page 1
Mr Preece was born in Worcester, England, and came to the colony by the first direct steamer, the Lord Worsley, in 1858, and first settled in Lyttelton. After being there for a few years, he removed to Christchurch and carried on an auctioneering and produce business on the site of the premises at present occupied by Messrs Tonks, Norton and Co.
About fourteen years ago he sold out his business, and since then he has led a retired life. Three years ago he paid a visit to his native land, on the death of his wife, and returned much unproved in health.
Although Mr Preece never took any active part in politics, being of a retiring nature, he was a man of liberal mind and did a good deal for his adopted country. He was amongst the earliest Freemasons here, and for some years held a prominent position in the Craft. Mr Preece, of Messrs Standish and Preece, is the only son, and Mrs Isaac Gibbs the only daughter. The funeral will leave Mr Gibbs's residence, Papanui Road, for the Papanui Churchyard, at 4 p.m. to-day.
Star, Issue 6079, 17 January 1898, Page 2
Funeral. The funeral of the late Mr Thomas Preece took place at the Papanui Churchyard yesterday afternoon. The hearse left the residence of Mr I. Gibbs, son-in-law of the deceased, and the coffin was covered with floral tributes sent by friends.
Amongst a number of beautiful wreaths there was one from the employes at Messrs Standish and Preece's photographic studio. Amongst those present were the Hon J. T. Peacock, the Rev Canon Knowles, Messrs H. R. Webb, J. Page, J. C. Wilkin, J. O. Amyes, E. Morgan, H. Lodge, H. Embling, H. S. Hill, J. J. Kinsey, R. Deacon, Wilcox (2), and Dr Jennings.
Star, Issue 6080, 18 January 1898, Page 3
His wife Anna died on 1 November 1894 at the residence of her son-in-law Isaac Gibbs, Merivale aged 70 years.
Press, Volume LI, Issue 8960, 26 November 1894, Page 3.
MRS ISAAC GIBBS. Very general regret was expressed in Christchurch to-day at the intelligence that Mrs Gibbs, wife of Mr Isaac Gibbs, manager of the New Zealand Shipping Company, had died yesterday; and flags were hoisted half-mast at many of the business premises in town.
The deceased lady was a daughter of the late Mr Thomas Preece, and was widely and deeply respected on account of her kindliness, and extensive, though unobtrusive, charity. She was for many years treasurer and secretary of the Ladies' Working Society in the parish of Merivale, and was a member of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and one of the first members of the Christchurch branch of the St John Ambulance Association.
She had been in ill-health for many months, and her death was accelerated by an attack of influenza. The funeral will take place at 2 p.m. tomorrow. A memorial service will be conducted by the Rev H. Airay Watson at St Mary's, Merivale, at 3 p.m. on Sunday.
Star, Issue 6143, 1 April 1898, Page 3