Thomas William Rhodes

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Thomas William Rhodes
Thomas W Rhodes.jpg
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for Thames
In office
20 November 1911 14 November 1928
Preceded by Edmund Taylor
Succeeded by Albert Samuel
Personal details
Born(1860-04-25)25 April 1860
Parnell, New Zealand
Died30 August 1944(1944-08-30) (aged 84)
Wellington, New Zealand
Political party Liberal Party
Reform Party
OccupationNewspaper proprietor

Thomas William Rhodes (25 April 1860 – 30 August 1944) was a New Zealand politician of the Liberal Party, then the Reform Party. He changed his affiliation to the Reform Party in 1915.

New Zealand Constitutional monarchy in Oceania

New Zealand is a sovereign island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses—the North Island, and the South Island —and around 600 smaller islands. New Zealand is situated some 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and roughly 1,000 kilometres (600 mi) south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga. Because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long period of isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity of animal, fungal, and plant life. The country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington, while its most populous city is Auckland.

The New Zealand Liberal Party was the first organised political party in New Zealand. It governed from 1891 until 1912. The Liberal strategy was to create a large class of small land-owning farmers who supported Liberal ideals, by buying large tracts of Māori land and selling it to small farmers on credit. The Liberal Government also established the basis of the later welfare state, with old age pensions, developed a system for settling industrial disputes, which was accepted by both employers and trade unions. In 1893 it extended voting rights to women, making New Zealand the first country in the world to enact universal female suffrage.

The Reform Party, formally the New Zealand Political Reform League, was New Zealand's second major political party, having been founded as a conservative response to the original Liberal Party. It was in government between 1912 and 1928, and later formed a coalition with the United Party, and then merged with United to form the modern National Party.


Early life

Rhodes was born in Parnell. In 1887, he founded the Coromandel Country News. [1]

Parnell, New Zealand

Parnell is an upmarket suburb in Auckland, New Zealand. It is one of New Zealand's most affluent suburbs, consistently ranked within the top three wealthiest, and is often billed as Auckland's "oldest suburb" since it dates from the earliest days of the European settlement of Auckland in 1841. It is characterised by its mix of tree lined streets with large estates; redeveloped industrial zones with Edwardian town houses and 1920s bay villas; and its hilly topography that allows for views of the port, the Waitematā Harbour, Rangitoto Island and the Auckland Domain. To its west lies the Auckland Domain, to the south Newmarket, and to the north the Ports of Auckland.

Political career

New Zealand Parliament
1911 1914 18th Thames Liberal
1914 1915 19th Thames Liberal
19151919Changed allegiance to: Reform
1919 1922 20th Thames Reform
1922 1925 21st Thames Reform
1925 1928 22nd Thames Reform

He represented the Thames electorate from 1911 to 1928, when he retired. [2] He was Mayor of Thames from 1923 to 1927. [3] In 1935, he was awarded the King George V Silver Jubilee Medal. [4]

Thames is a former New Zealand electorate, in the Thames-Coromandel District. It existed from 1871 to 1946.

1911 New Zealand general election

The New Zealand general election of 1911 was held on Thursday, 7 and 14 December in the general electorates, and on Tuesday, 19 December in the Māori electorates to elect a total of 80 MPs to the 18th session of the New Zealand Parliament. A total number of 590,042 (83.5%) voters turned out to vote. In two seats there was only one candidate.

1928 New Zealand general election

The New Zealand general election of 1928 was held on 13 and 14 November in the Māori and European electorates, respectively, to elect 80 MPs to the 23rd session of the New Zealand Parliament.


Rhodes died at his home in 11 St Mary's Street, Wellington, on 30 August 1944, aged 84. [1] He was cremated on 1 September 1944 at the Karori Crematorium. [5]

Wellington Capital city in New Zealand

Wellington is the capital city and second most populous urban area of New Zealand, with 418,500 residents. It is located at the south-western tip of the North Island, between Cook Strait and the Remutaka Range. Wellington is the major population centre of the southern North Island, and is the administrative centre of the Wellington Region, which also includes the Kapiti Coast and Wairarapa. Its latitude is 41°17′S, making it the world's southernmost capital of a sovereign state. Wellington features a temperate maritime climate, and is the world's windiest city by average wind speed.

Karori Crematorium heritage building in Karori Cemetery, Wellington, New Zealand

The Karori Crematorium and its adjacent chapel are located in Karori Cemetery in the Wellington suburb of Karori. The crematorium was the first such facility in New Zealand, and it opened in 1909. The Karori Crematorium and chapel are registered by the New Zealand Historic Places Trust as Category I heritage items, with registration number 1399.

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  1. 1 2 "Obituary". The Evening Post . CXXXVIII (53). 31 August 1944. p. 6. Retrieved 8 January 2011.
  2. Scholefield, Guy (1950) [First ed. published 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1949 (3rd ed.). Wellington: Govt. Printer. p. 135.
  3. "Mayors and Councillors of Thames". THE TREASURY. Retrieved 8 January 2011.
  4. "Official jubilee medals". Evening Post . CXIX (105). 6 May 1935. p. 4. Retrieved 6 September 2015.
  5. "Details". Wellington City Council . Retrieved 8 January 2011.
New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
Edmund Taylor
Member of Parliament for Thames
Succeeded by
Albert Samuel