Te Aro (New Zealand electorate)

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Te Aro was a parliamentary electorate in Wellington, New Zealand from 1881 to 1890. It covered the southern area of the central business district. During the three parliamentary terms of its existence, the electorate was represented by three Members of Parliament.

Population centres[edit]

The previous electoral redistribution was undertaken in 1875 for the 1875–76 election. In the six years since, New Zealand's European population had increased by 65%. In the 1881 electoral redistribution, the House of Representatives increased the number of European representatives to 91 (up from 84 since the 1875–76 election). The number of Māori electorates was held at four. The House further decided that electorates should not have more than one representative, which led to 35 new electorates being formed, including Te Aro, and two electorates that had previously been abolished to be recreated. This necessitated a major disruption to existing boundaries.[1]

The electorate was based on the inner suburb of Te Aro, which is located in the southern end of the central business district.[2] In the 1887 electoral redistribution, the Te Aro electorate lost much of its southern area to the newly formed Wellington East electorate.[3] In the 1890 electoral redistribution, the Te Aro electorate was abolished, and the area became part of the three-member City of Wellington electorate.[4]


The Te Aro electorate was represented by three Members of Parliament:[5]

Members of Parliament[edit]

Unless otherwise stated, all MPs terms began and ended at a general election.



Election Winner
1881 election Charles Johnston
1884 election
1887 by-election Francis Fraser
1887 election Andrew Menteath
(Electorate abolished in 1890; see City of Wellington)

Election results[edit]

1887 election[edit]

1887 New Zealand general election[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent Andrew Menteath 877 54.98
Independent Francis Fraser 718 45.02
Majority 159 9.97
Turnout 1,595

1887 by-election[edit]

1887 Te Aro by-election[7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent Francis Fraser 506 58.77
Independent William Travers 346 40.19
Independent J Nancarrow 9 1.05
Majority 160 18.58
Turnout 861

1884 election[edit]

1884 New Zealand general election[8]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent Charles Johnston 346 37.94
Independent Francis Fraser 332 36.40
Independent E Shaw 129 14.14
Independent J H Shaw 71 7.79
Independent O'Shea 34 3.73
Majority 14 1.54 -3.65
Turnout 912

1881 election[edit]

1881 New Zealand general election[9]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent Charles Johnston 397 37.45
Independent Shaw 342 32.26
Independent Stafford 321 30.28
Majority 55 5.19
Turnout 1,060



  • McRobie, Alan (1989). Electoral Atlas of New Zealand. Wellington: GP Books. ISBN 0-477-01384-8.
  • Wilson, James Oakley (1985) [First published in 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1984 (4th ed.). Wellington: V.R. Ward, Govt. Printer. OCLC 154283103.