Mary Dreaver

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Mary Dreaver in 1934

Mary Manson Dreaver MBE (née Bain, 31 March 1887 – 19 July 1961) was a New Zealand politician of the Labour Party.


Parliament of New Zealand
Years Term Electorate Party
1941–1943 26th Waitemata Labour

She was born in Dunedin, the oldest of 13 children of Alexander Manson Bain and Hanna Kiely. She was a minister and president of the National Spiritualist Church of New Zealand, a journalist as Maorilander in the New Zealand Woman's Weekly, and a broadcaster on Radio 1ZB as Aunt Maisy.[1]

Dreaver sought selection by the Labour Party for the 1930 by-election in the Parnell electorate, but was beaten by Thomas Bloodworth.[2][3] She won the Waitemata electorate in 1941 when a by-election was held after the death of the previous Labour Party MP, Jack Lyon.[4] She was defeated in the next (1943) general election, by the National Party candidate, Henry Thorne Morton.[5]

She was the third woman to be elected to Parliament after Elizabeth McCombs and Catherine Stewart. She also was on several Auckland local bodies.[1]

She and Mary Patricia Anderson were the first two women appointed to the Legislative Council. They were appointed by the First Labour Government in 1946 (after a law change in 1941 to make women eligible); and they served to 1950 when the Legislative Council was abolished.[6]

In the 1946 New Year Honours, Dreaver was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire for services in connection with recruiting for the Women's Land Army.[7]

She died in Auckland on 19 July 1961. She was survived by her husband (by only three months), three daughters and two sons.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Laracy, Hugh. "Dreaver, Mary Manson - Biography". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 22 July 2012. 
  2. ^ "Parnell By-Election" CIX (75). The Evening Post. 29 March 1930. p. 11. Retrieved 11 August 2013. 
  3. ^ "Labour Candidate" CIX (79). The Evening Post. 3 April 1930. p. 10. Retrieved 11 August 2013. 
  4. ^ Wilson 1985, pp. 193, 213.
  5. ^ Wilson 1985, pp. 193, 221.
  6. ^ Wilson 1985, p. 152.
  7. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 37410. p. 161. 1 January 1946. Retrieved 30 November 2013.


New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
Jack Lyon
Member of Parliament for Waitemata
Succeeded by
Henry Thorne Morton