Springfield – St Peter’s Church and Kowai Pass Cemetery

*** COMPLETE ***

The rural cemeteries of Canterbury, on New Zealand’s South Island, are often in secluded, scenic locations.

Springfield Cemetery, serving the populations of Springfield and the surrounding farming area of the Malvern Hills (including Annat, Kowai, and Sheffield), is no exception.

All records prior to 1903 have disappeared, having either been lost or destroyed in a fire. The earliest known burials (from headstone inscriptions) are:

1876 – Methodist block

1878 – Presbyterian and Anglican blocks

1881 – Catholic block.

Memorial plaques can be found both inside the church and the lychgate – these are listed and illustrated in the St Peter’s Church blog post.


High-resolution photographs of the grave are available, plus one or two of the cemetery/church if applicable. This includes a full transcription for those stones that are hard to read or eroded.

Please consider a small donation to keep the site and the work going

Email me for gravestone images: moorfnz@gmail.com


ANDREWS, Ruth Evelyn (d. 25th December, 1992)

ATKINSON, Elizabeth Helen (d. 3rd April, 1953)

ATKINSON, Frederick Ashley (d. 28th April, 1986)

ATKINSON, J H – on South Africa 1901 War Memorial

ATKINSON, Thomas (d. 27th January, 1897)

ATKINSON, William John (d. 16th July, 1923)

BARKER, Beaven Shirley (d. 27th May, 1992)

BARNES, Thyra Merle (d. 8th December, 1972)

BERRY, Agnes (d. 31st July, 1913)

BLACKLEY, J C (d. 6th March, 1922)

BONNOR, Charlie (d. 13th December, 1894). Buried with his brothers and sisters.

BUTLER, Edward (d. 27th August, 1912)

BUTLER, Philip Nathan (d. 8th November, 1887)

BROOMFIELD, Annie Helena Landstra (d. 7th November, 1911)

BROWNLEE, Annie (d. 15th January, 1906)

BRYSON, Mathew (d. 1910)

BRYSON, Rebecca (d. 1953)

BRYSON, Robert (d. 1929)

BUTTERFIELD, Joseph (d. 1st December, 1928)

BUTTERFIELD, Sarah (d. 23rd February, 1887)

CARRINGTON, Gerard Nelson (d. 22nd August, 1926). Grave plot also has a memorial plaque from the Canterbury Mountaineering Club.

CARSON, Eva Maud (d. 2nd April, 1978)

CARSON, William (1883 – 1950). Buried with “wee Sybil aged 8 months”.

COLLIER, Janice Hazel (d. 30th March, 1999)

COLYER, Maria (d. 14th April, 1918)

COUMBE, Mary (d. 26th August, 1907)

CRAIGHEAD, Helen (d.  5th January, 1892). Mother of David Craighead, farmer at Russell’s Flat. Helen and her husband John (also this headstone) came over to New Zealand from England aboard the “Cashmere” in 1851. The passenger list shows the family as: Helen (44), John (44 – Ploughman), Alexander (11 – Farm Labourer), Margaret (8), Thomas (5), David (2).

CRAIGHEAD, Mary (d. 1st December, 1878)

DACOMBE, Arnold Nelson (d. 1 March, 1991)

DAVIS, James (d. 3rd June, 1883)

DINGWALL, Donald David (d. 6th March, 1986)

DORMAN, Gordon (d. 17th August, 1993)

DORMAN, Harold (d. 8th February, 1918)

DORMAN, Jean (d. 10th April, 1930)

DORWARD, Colin McKenzie (d. 26th January, 1924)

DOUGLAS, Agnes (d. 10th December, 1885)

DRUMMOND, Harry (d. 24th December, 1915)

DUNCAN, Alexander John (Alister) (d. 29th October, 2007)

DUNCAN, Christine Ann (d. 21st September, 1979)

DUNCAN, Jean Heather (d. 27th August, 2002)

ELSON, W P (Bill) (d. 1st February, 2002)

EVANS, Christina (d. 24th June, 1896)

FAULKNER, William Henry (1899 – 1981)

FECHNEY, Mary (d. 27th August, 1953)

FERGUSON, Henry Herbert (Harry) (d. 29th May, 2001)

FERGUSON, John Jones (d. 20th August, 1900)

FERGUSON, John Ogden (d. 14th February, 1983)

FERGUSON, Lester Atkinson (d. 13th November, 1991). Brigadier in the 23rd Battalion (Reg No. 19356)

FERGUSON, Reg (1908 – 1946)

FERGUSON, Thomas Knott Anderson (d. 4th December, 2007)

FERGUSON, Violet Louise (d. 1885 – 1938)

FISHER, Alfred (d. 1940)

FISHER, John (d. 10th November, 1903)

FISHER, Robert (d. 11th March, 1883)

FOSTER, George (d. 20th March, 1916)

FRASER, George Edward (d. 13th August, 1942)

FRASER, John (d. 17th April, 1893)

FRASER, John (d. 10th January, 1917)

GAMBLE, William Johnson (d. March, 1962)

GIBSON, Jean & Daphne (no date)

GIBSON, William (d. 3rd December, 1965)

GILLETT, Arthur G F (d. 6th February, 1937)

GILLETT, James (d. 25th March, 1919)

GOLD, Johann, (d. 7th October, 1919)

GOLD, William (d. 18th September, 1919)

GREENING, Charles Cornelius Traves (d. 18th February, 1977)

GREENING, Mervyn Charles (d. 28th November, 2008)

GUY, Alice (d. 15th June, 1904)

GUY, Annie (d. 8th October, 1903)

GUY, Thomas (d. 16th October, 1919)

HALL, Reginald William (d. 1st March, 2003). Priest.

HALL, William (d. 30th December, 1919)

HALLIDAY, Sarah (d. 20th May, 1925)

HAY, Barbara C (d. 1969)

HAYES, George W (d. 21st December, 1961)

HAYES, Mary Jane (d. 8th November, 1918)

HENDERSON, Jeanne Gordon (d. 1998)

HENRY, Arthur (d. 1st Nov, 1924). Born at Carmeen, County Monaghan, Ireland, and came to New Zealand aboard the ship “Carisbrook Castle,” with his father, the late Mr. John Henry, of Russell’s Flat, who died in 1892.

HENRY, David (d. 8th November, 1893)

HENRY, Elizabeth (d. 1941)

HENRY, Emma Lee (d. 28th June, 1927)

HENRY, James (d. 1947)

HENRY, John (d. 3rd December, 1891)

HENRY, Robert

HENRY, Thomas (d. January 1906)

HENRY, Thomas (d. 27th October, 1910)

HENRY, Thomas (d. 4th August, 1932)

HENRY, William (d. 19th May, 1896)

HOBSON, George Henry (d. 1881)

HOGLUND, John (d. 20th February, 1939)

HOGLUND, Leonard James (d. 21st June, 1960)

IRVINE, Eileen Norah (d. 3rd August, 1927)

JAMES, James Thomas (d. 15th May, 1974)

JAMES, Rowena Tracy (d. 1st May, 1991)

JOINES, Elizabeth Agatha (d. 1924)

JOINES, Thomas (d. 2nd December, 1917)

JOHNSON, Bridget (d. 7th February, 1954)

JOHNSON, Peter Richard Mayott Darval (d. 24th June, 1983)

JOHNSON, Rose Eleanor Clare (d. 18th September, 1987)

JOHNSON, Virginia Norah (d. 17th August, 1995)

JOHNSTONE, Frederick Thomas (d. 4th August, 1892)

KAIN, Annie Isabella (d. 10th March, 1893)

KAIN, Rachel (d. 26th May, 1902)

KAIN, Thomas (d. 25th April, 1918)

KEANE, Andrew (d. 16th December, 1943)

KEANE, Bessie (d. 3rd November, 1897)

KEANE, Catherine (d. 12th February, 1906)

KEANE, Catherine (d. 8th  February, 1946)

KEANE, Hugh (d. 10th May, 1903)

KEANE, Margaret (d. 10th September, 1940)

KEANE, Mary (d. 21st September, 1947)

KEANE, Natalie (d. 24th August, 1886)

KEANE, Sarah (d. 30th July, 1937)

KEANE, William P (d. 23rd March, 1934)

KELLY, John (d. 4th December, 1910)

KELLY, John (d. 13th March, 1959)

KELLY, Margaret Grace (d. 21st June, 1954)

KELLY, Mildred Mary (d. 11th December, 1990)

KEYS, Helen Lucy (d. 18th October, 1890)

LAWSON, Frederick Louis (d. 18th June, 1950)

LEARY, Catherine (d. 1903)

LINDLEY, Louisa (d. 12th August, 1881)

LOHREY, Philip Henry (1929 – 1999)

LONG, Thomas (d. 26th March, 1902)

MANN, John Charles (d. 9th May, 1920)

MATIER, John (d. tba – damaged by earthquake)

MATTHESON, Jessie (d. 9th May, 1892)

McCURDY, Ivy Gwendoline (d. 20th June, 1988)

McCURDY, Martha Jane (1871 – 1942)

McILRATH, Hamilton (d. 24th July, 1915). Born at Killinchy, County Down, Ireland, in 1839. Came to New Zealand in 1863 via Melbourne. Married Eliza Jane Atkinson.

via New Zealand Electronic Text Centre

McILRATH, Harriet Ellen (1880 – 1898)

McINTYRE, Harold George (d. 21st May, 1896)

McKAY, Daniel Forbes (d. 25th July, 1929)

McKAY, Robert (d. 14th October, 1881)

McKAY, William and Donald (no dates given)

McLEAN, Gertrude Alfreda (d. 24th March, 2000)

McLEOD, David (d. 20th May, 2000)

McMULLAN, Margaret (d. 2nd July, 1897)

McMULLAN, Margaret Mary (d. 2nd May, 1998)

MENZIES, Alvin James (d. 9th June, 1975)

MILLAR, Arnold James (d. 20th February, 1995)

MILLAR, Hugh Alexander (d. 1942)

MILLICENT, Edward Francis (d. 14th March, 2005)

MILLIKEN, David Maurice (d. 23rd June, 1999)

MILLIKEN, John (d. 16th September, 1920). John Milliken arrived in New Zealand in 1881 with his wife Elizabeth. They had 12 children, 6 of which appear to have been born in New Zealand – Ivy Iloine (1890), Nina Sylvaline (1892), William Thomas (1894), Gladys Amelia (1896), Myrtle Doris (1900), Albert Edward (1902).

MILLIKEN, Lance Eliott (d. 10th December, 1945)

MILLIKEN, Leslie George (d. 18th July, 1983)

MILLIKEN, Robert Eric (d. 17th April, 1943). Killed in action.

MILLIKEN, Vina Sylvia (d. 24th April, 1970). Born Nina Sylvaline (NZ BMD) 1892.

MILLIKEN, William John (d. 2nd July, 1985)

MILLIKEN, William Thomas (d. 28th March, 1918). Killed in action in Palestine.

MONTGOMERY, Helena (d. 1904)

MOORE, W J – on South Africa 1901 War Memorial

MORRIS, Samuel (d. 16th March, 1909). Strangely, two headstones, both identical, lie on the spot – broken in the recent earthquake.

MORTEN, James G (d. 23rd February, 1892). Born in Boston, USA. Headstone erected by the Brothers of the Masonic Lodge (Malvern), of which he was a member.

NAISMITH, Charlotte Elizabeth (d. 30th August, 1912)

NAISMITH, Daniel (d. 28th October, 1945)

NAISMITH, Margaret (d. 14th November, 1920)

NAISMITH, Mary Anne (d. 5th June, 1943)

NEWMAN Family Stone – Edward Henry d. 1935, Catherine Margaret (nee Poole) d. 1960, Catherine Anne d. 1968, and Edward Spencer d. 1968.

NEWNHAM, William Frederick (d. 6th November, 1905)

NIMMO, Agnes (d. 23rd June, 1919)

NIMMO, Agnes (d. 23rd June, 1961)

NIMMO, Christina (d. 26th January, 1952)

NIMMO, David (d. 28th March, 1917)

NIMMO, Hugh (d. 18th September, 1967)

NIMMO, John (d. 1941)

NIMMO, John Findlay (Jack) (d. 6th September, 1989)

NIMMO, Margaret May (d. 16th January, 1984)

NUTT, Jemima (1887 – 1984). Nee Milliken

NUTTALL, Polly (d. 1886 – aged 16 months)

ODGERS, Annie – aged 6 (no other dates given)

ODGERS, Annie (d. 17th August, 1934)

ODGERS, Edward (d. 26th August, 1917)

OSHAUGHNESSY, William (d. 30th June, 1912)

PASCOE, Arnold Paul (d. 11th September, 1976)

PATERSON, Ena Elizabeth (d. 2005)

PINER, Annie Isabel (d. 3rd April, 1923)

PINER, Robert William (d. 14th April, 1903)

POPPLE, William Terrington (d. 22nd June, 1925). Born in the East Riding of Yorkshire, in 1841. He came to New Zealand in 1862 aboard the ship “Queen of the Mersey”, eventually settling in Sheffield in 1871. He married Mary Ann Leigh in 1871.

Son William Terrington Popple – Defence Force Personnel File 
Son George Leigh Popple – Cenotaph record.

POULTON, Eric George (d. 28th September, 1977)

POULTON, George (d. 9th February, 1983)

PRATT, Alfred (d. 20th March, 1944). Fell in battle at Cassino, Italy.

PRATT, Richard Thomas (d. 27th March, 1922). Member of the Canterbury Regiment.

PURNELL, Ellen (d. 19th August, 1901)

QUINN, Francis William (d. 5th April, 1904)

RAE, Charles (d. 22nd August, 1921)

REDFERN, Charles William (d. 24th August, 1891). Husband of Mary Courtney

REDFERN, Mary (d. 26th December, 1891)

REDFERN, Olive (d. 1st September, 1891)

REID, James Steer (d. 2nd June, 1938)

RICE, James (d. 11th February, 1911)

ROBINSON, Leonard Peter (d. 29th December, 1959)

RODGERS, Cornelius Henry Valentine (d. 12th April, 1941). “He journeyed to Mt Torlesse as a baby in a bullock dray”.

RODGERS, William (d. 5th October, 1889). Was one of the first settlers, who purchased land in the Kowhai Bush towards the end of the 1850s, along with Henry Williamson (see below).

ROYCROFT, Eliza (d. 7th January, 1915)

RUSHTON, Edward Philip (d. 1949)

RUSHTON, Francis Henry (d. 27th July, 1924)

RUSHTON, Rose Hannah (d. 6th July, 1934)

RUSHTON, William (d. 12th August, 1909)

RUTHERFORD, Agnes May (d. 16th October, 1883). Infant daughter of George and Agnes Rutherford (below).

RUTHERFORD, Agnes Miller (d. 21st January, 1884). Died age 23. Nee Barr.

RUTHERFORD, George (d. 22nd December, 1918). Born in Australia (Victoria) in 1850, and came to New Zealand with his parents in 1860. Educated at Christ’s College, was on his father’s run at Leslie Hills for some years, and then moved to the Dalethorpe station at Russell’s Flat in 1873. George married Miss Agnes Miller Barr in 1877.

via New Zealand Electronic Text Centre

RYAN, F J – on South Africa 1901 War Memorial

SEARLE, Elizabeth Agnes (d. 28th March, 1949)

SEARLE, Ellie Ellen Imelda (d. 6th April, 1989)

SEARLE, Fanny (d. 1942)

SEARLE, Frederick (d. 2nd November, 1925)

SEARLE, Frederick Charles (d. 1st February, 1917)

SEARLE, Jim Ellis (d. 25th May, 2007)

SEARLE, Simon Frederick (d. 1976)

SHANNON, David (d. 12th January, 1951)

SHAW, Leslie George (d. 26th August, 1988)

SMART, Muriel Iris (d. 31st July, 1979)

SMITH, Desmond Edward (1910 – 1968)

SMITH, Edwin (1890 – 1966)

SMITH, Ellen (d. 13th May, 1959). “Last surviving daughter of West Coast pioneers”

SMITH, Harold Dowling (d. 10th January, 1932). The son of Mr Harry Smith a school inspector formerly of Greymouth, Harold (27) a school teacher) died in the vicinity of Harman’s Pass while on a tramping trip from the West Coast to Canterbury with two fellow school teachers. According to newspaper reports of the day Charles Bernard Robbins (27), was found to have sustained injuries from a bad fall after which he fell in the stream and drowned or froze to death, while Harold Smith had frozen to death after losing his pack in a blizzard. The third tramper, Keith Loney (26), was found safe by searchers thanks, he says, to an extra blanket he’d packed. Loney related his story of survival to the newspapers.

SMITH, Mary (d. 12th November, 1947)

SMITH, Robert (1892 – 1962)

SMITH, William (1888 – 1958)

SYMMANS, Harry Robert (d. 14th June, 1879)

TAYLOR, Emily (d. 25th April, 1920). Buried with several of her young children.

TEAL, Grace Mary (d. 1884 – 1976)

THOMAS, Frederick (d. 4th August, 1892)

THOMAS, John (d. 1944)

THOMSON, James B (d. 17th September, 1897)

TRAVES, Charles (d. 9th March, 1924)

TYSON, Jack (d. 18th March, 1991)

WALLES, Henry (d. 5th December, 1901)

WALLES, Jessie (d. 6th September, 1895)

WALLES, Thomas Charles (d. 22nd August, 1898)

WALLES, Thomas Charles (d. 17th March, 1909)

WASON, John Thomas (d. 24th March, 1954)

WATSON, George Albert (d. 18th April, 1921)

WATSON, William (d. 4th October, 1888)

WHITE, Harold H (d. 20th June, 1983)

WHITTINGTON, Thomas (d. 11th March, 1957)

WILKS, Charles Earl (d. 13th March, 1984)

WILLIAMS, Gilbert (d. 27th April, 1954)

WILLIAMS, Simon Thomas (d.  29th April, 1914)

WILLIAMS, William Martin (d. 25th March, 1927)

WILLIAMSON, Henry (d. 1st July, 1900). Along with William Rodgers (see above) was one of the first settlers in the region.

YEOMAN, Mary (d. 17th October, 1925)


13 thoughts on “Springfield – St Peter’s Church and Kowai Pass Cemetery

  1. Great effort! Well done…. i know how much work goes in to editing this sort of thing! Keep up the terrific work, it’s appreciated.

    Posted by Sarndra | December 6, 2010, 10:50 am
  2. Hello!

    I am from Sweden, and search for my relatives and their children in Auckland.

    My relative Charles John Johnson
    born 1865-06-20 in Oskarshamn, Sweden (Carl Johan Jonsson)
    Married Jessie from England.

    Their children:
    Robert Johnson
    Alma Johnson

    They had a fish-store, or something like that…

    Please, can you help me to find my relatives?

    Greetings from Sweden

    Gittane Iseland

    Posted by Gittane Iseland | April 3, 2011, 7:06 pm
    • Hi Gittane,

      A good place to start would be the records of Births, Death, and Marriages online. https://www.bdmonline.dia.govt.nz

      You could also try searching old New Zealand newspapers using Papers Past. The collection covers the years 1839 to 1945 and includes 61 publications from all regions of New Zealand. http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/cgi-bin/paperspast

      KiwiCelts website also has a good list of NZ family history resources: http://kiwicelts.com

      Best of luck in your search.
      Hunting Kiwis

      Posted by hleggatt | April 9, 2011, 7:39 am
      • Thank you so very much..

        Now I know a little bit more =
        Charles John Johnson married Janet Sharp 1895 (BornLaw/Married1 Norman)
        She died 1912, and he died 1946.
        Their children was
        Victor Laurence 1896-1951 and Alma Isabella 1899-1973.

        If someone know more about them and their life, please write to me.. Hugs and greetings from Sweden

        Posted by Gittane Iseland | May 19, 2011, 12:50 am
      • No problem – glad you found out more about your ancestors. If you can add any information about your ancestors’ gravestones on this blog please do let us know. 🙂

        Posted by hleggatt | May 19, 2011, 4:34 am
  3. Hello again!
    You asked me for more, and I was LYCKY!!!
    This is what I found:

    Janet Sharp (Law / Norman / Johnson) and Charles John Johnson lived on Shortland street, Auckland, when she died 1912. Her mother was Mrs Waddell from Thames,
    (and her father maybe Law???)
    She was married before, but her husband, James Nicholas Norman, died, only 37 years old.
    They had the children,
    Jennet Christina Norman born 1883
    and her brother, dvs William John Nicholas Norman born 1889.
    They were only 8 and 2, when their father died.

    Janet (sometimes Jeanette/Jannett..)
    and Charles John got two children,
    Victor Laurance Johnson, born 1896 and Alma Isabella Johnson, born 1899.

    When Janet died 1912, her children was
    29, 23, 16 and 13.. and maybe she had one more child?

    Victor Laurence was a marine engineer, the same as his brother-in-law, Joseph Alfred Anderson (Ilmo), the husband of Alma Isabella.
    Victor Laurence died 30nov 1951. He was cremated.
    He doesn’t have any stone in the Waikumete Cemetery, but his sister and her husband has one

    This is the plaque/stone:
    loved husband of Alma
    father of Desmond, Lorraine and Ross
    died 19 Sept 1957
    aged 66yrs.
    Also his loved wife ALMA ISABEL
    died 26 Jan 1973 aged 73yrs. R.I.P.

    Now, I loved to have some help to find Desmond, Lorraine and Ross…
    ANDERSON in Auckland..
    Can you help me???
    Maybe give them my e-mail-adresse???
    Have a nice life

    Posted by Gittane Iseland | June 1, 2011, 6:09 pm
  4. Greetings, It’s good to see all the effort and results you have put into recording these cemeteries..

    I supply an adjustment and update which I recommend for the gravestone of my grandparents at the St Peters Church Kowhai Pass Cemetery: –

    PINER, Annie Isobel (d. 3rd April, 1923) – [spelling on stone is “Isabel”]
    PINER, Charles Edward (d. 29th August, 1934) – [name omitted/overlooked]

    Keep up the good work – it’s appreciated.

    Posted by Ian E. B. PINER | November 16, 2011, 7:51 pm
    • Many thanks for the updates Ian, I will amend as necessary. As of yet I have not added the names of additional people on the headstones due to a) time limitations and b) I thought it would be nice for people to ‘discover’ the others on the headstones when obtaining the full photograph from me 🙂

      Kind regards

      Posted by hleggatt | December 12, 2011, 1:12 am
  5. See Charles and Elizabeth Mary Rae nee Mactigue, lived Kowhai Bush and buried Springfield.
    Connected by kin to; Maurice Leslie Rae born 12 March 1935 and a Commonwealth Games 100-200 metre Champion living New Lynn Auckland.

    Posted by Bilington | April 1, 2015, 7:18 am
  6. Hi I am looking for any information about my grandfather, John Nimmo born about 1877, parents are john William Nimmo and Jane. Jane settled in Picton 1911 and died in 1952. Thank you. Philip p.js30@hotmail.com

    Posted by Philip Sim | June 30, 2015, 8:50 pm
  7. Nothing on Nimmo as far as I can see

    Posted by Bassa | June 30, 2015, 9:18 pm

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