Hugh Finn

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Hugh Joseph Finn (1847 – 18 December 1927) was a 19th-century Member of Parliament in the Otago region of New Zealand.

Biography[edit]

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate Party
1879–1881 7th Wakatipu Independent

Finn was born in Kilkenny, Ireland, in 1847.[1] He was a younger brother of Peter Finn.[2] He was initially home-schooled and started attending Blackrock College in Blackrock near Dublin from the age of twelve. He then attended the Jesuit College in Amiens, France, and finally the Melbourne Church of England Grammar School in Australia. He went to the University of Melbourne for his tertiary education.[1]

He joined the practice of George Godfrey in Melbourne as a clerk and passed his law exam.[1]

In March 1874, he emigrated to New Zealand and arrived in Dunedin.[1] In August of that year, he was admitted as a barrister and solicitor to the Supreme Court of New Zealand.[3] He practised as a barrister in Queenstown.[4] He was also manager of the Gladstone Gold-Mining Company.[5] In early 1875, he travelled in New Zealand with judge Robert Molesworth from Victoria.[6]

Finn got married to Lizzie McLean, daughter of John McLean of Kurow Station, on 20 February 1877 at Lawrence.[7] They had a son in July 1878.[8]

He stood for a county council election in November 1878 in the Kingston Riding and was beaten by 43 votes to 12.[9] He contested the 1879 election as a supporter of George Grey[10] against Henry Manders (the incumbent) and William Mason[11] (a prominent architect who had moved to Queenstown in 1876).[12] Mason won the show of hands at the nomination meeting.[13] Thomas Fergus had also considered contesting Wakatipu, but he decided against it.[14] Finn, Mason and Manders received 266, 236 and 143 votes, respectively.[15] The Dunedin Herald commented after the election that Wakatipu voters had had a difficult choice between the incumbent Manders ("he had cut such a sorry figure [in Parliament] before"), Mason (who was supported by large land owners, which kept people from obtaining land for farming) and Finn (who was in a serious dispute with Queenstown's Resident Magistrate before the election). In the end, the voters decided for Finn, "the least of three evils".[16] Finn represented the Wakatipu electorate from 1879 until the end of the parliamentary term in 1881, when he retired.[17]

He later moved to Gisborne and practised there. He died in Tauranga on 18 December 1927.[18][19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Cyclopedia Company Limited (1902). "Gisborne". The Cyclopedia of New Zealand : Auckland Provincial District. Christchurch: The Cyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 4 July 2012. 
  2. ^ "Mr Peter T. Finn". Poverty Bay Herald. XXXVIII (12446). 4 May 1911. p. 5. Retrieved 1 July 2012. 
  3. ^ "News of the Week". Otago Witness (1187). 29 August 1874. p. 14. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  4. ^ "The Otago Daily Times". Otago Daily Times (3913). 1 September 1874. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  5. ^ "Advertisements". Otago Daily Times (5096). 18 June 1878. p. 1. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  6. ^ "Untitled". Southland Times (2062). 1 February 1875. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  7. ^ "Marriage". Otago Daily Times (4685). 22 February 1877. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  8. ^ "Births". Otago Witness (1989). 13 July 1878. p. 16. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  9. ^ "Telegrams". Otago Witness (1410). 30 November 1878. p. 17. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  10. ^ "Election Intelligence". The Evening Post. XVIII (49). 26 August 1879. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  11. ^ "Otago News". West Coast Times (3231). 8 August 1879. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  12. ^ "Nominations". The Press. XXXII (4400). 6 September 1879. p. 3. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  13. ^ "Other Election Items". Colonist. XXII (2597). 6 September 1879. p. 3. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  14. ^ "Miscellaneous". Otago Witness (1449). 30 August 1879. p. 11. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  15. ^ "Election News". North Otago Times. XXVIII (2301). 16 September 1879. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  16. ^ "News of the Day". The Press. XXXII (4416). 25 September 1879. p. 2. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  17. ^ Wilson, James Oakley (1985) [First ed. published 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1984 (4th ed.). Wellington: V.R. Ward, Govt. Printer. p. 196. OCLC 154283103. 
  18. ^ "Personal Matters". The Evening Post. CIV (147). 19 December 1927. p. 11. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  19. ^ "Death". Bay of Plenty Times. 19 December 1927. p. 2. Retrieved 25 October 2016. 
New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
Henry Manders
Member of Parliament for Wakatipu
1879–1881
Succeeded by
Thomas Fergus