Henry Tancred (New Zealand politician)

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Henry Tancred
Henry John Tancred 1882.jpg
Henry John Tancred ca 1882
New Zealand Legislative Council
In office
Personal details
Born 1816
Died 27 April 1884
Christchurch, New Zealand
Political party Independent
Spouse(s) Georgeanna Richmond, married 1857, no children

Henry John Tancred (1816 – 27 April 1884) was a 19th-century New Zealand politician.

Early life[edit]

Tancred was baptised on 14 May 1816 at the Isle of Wight. His father was Sir Thomas Tancred, 6th Baronet and his elder brother was Sir Thomas Tancred, 7th Baronet.[1][2] He was educated at Rugby School. He served in the Austrian army and fought in Austria, Hungary and Italy. He was severely injured in a fall from a horse and had a speech impairment as a result.[1]

New Zealand[edit]

Back in England to recuperate, he became interested in the Canterbury Association and decided to emigrate. He arrived in Canterbury in December 1850 from Wellington on the Barbara Gordon, just prior to the arrival of the first Canterbury settlers.

He married Georgeanna Janet Grace Richmond in Nelson on 30 July 1857.

Political career[edit]

Provincial Council[edit]

Tancred was one of three candidates for the role of Superintendent in 1853.[3] The election was won by James FitzGerald.

He became a member of the Canterbury Provincial Council at its establishment in 1853 and retained membership until the abolition of provincial government in 1876. In 1866, he was elected speaker of this council.[1][4]

Member of the upper house[edit]

Tancred was a member of the New Zealand Legislative Council from 1856 to 1866.[5]

Member of the executive[edit]

Tancred was a member of three ministries. He was appointed as a minister without portfolio in the 2nd Parliament in the Sewell Ministry, from 18 April to 20 May 1856.[6]

In the first Stafford Ministry, which he joined on 5 August 1858 as a member of the executive council, he was appointed as Secretary for Crown Lands (19 August 1858) and three months later (3 November) Postmaster-General. He held those offices until the end of this government on 12 July 1861.[7]

In the 3rd Parliament, he was a member of the executive council of the Domett Ministry from 6 August 1862 until 6 February 1863.[7][4]

Member of the lower house[edit]

Parliament of New Zealand
Years Term Electorate Party
1867–1870 4th Ashley Independent

He was the Member of Parliament for Ashley in the fourth Parliament from 1867 to 1870, when he retired.[1]


Tancred died in Christchurch on 27 April 1884, aged 68 years.[1][8] He was buried at Barbadoes Street Cemetery three days later.[9][10] He was survived by his wife. There were no children from the marriage.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Parton, H. N. "Tancred, Henry John". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved 9 March 2010. 
  2. ^ "Sir Thomas Tancred". The Cyclopedia of New Zealand - Canterbury Provincial District. Christchurch: The Cyclopedia Company Limited. 1903. Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  3. ^ "Untitled". Lyttelton Times. III (133). 23 July 1853. p. 7. Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  4. ^ a b The Cyclopedia of New Zealand - Wellington Provincial District. Wellington: The Cyclopedia Company Limited. 1897. 
  5. ^ "The Hon. Henry John Tancred". The Cyclopedia of New Zealand - Canterbury Provincial District. Christchurch: The Cyclopedia Company Limited. 1903. Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  6. ^ Scholefield 1950, p. 31.
  7. ^ a b Scholefield 1950, p. 32.
  8. ^ "Deaths". The Star (4987). 28 April 1884. p. 2. Retrieved 23 August 2011. 
  9. ^ Greenaway, Richard L. N. (June 2007). "Barbadoes Street Cemetery Tour" (PDF). Christchurch City Libraries. p. 4. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  10. ^ "Funerals". The Star (4990). 1 May 1884. p. 3. Retrieved 23 August 2011. 


  • Scholefield, Guy Hardy (1950) [First ed. published 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1949 (3rd ed.). Wellington: Govt. Printer. 
New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
Lancelot Walker
Member of Parliament for Ashley
Succeeded by
John Evans Brown