William Addis
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William John Addis (abt. 1856 - 1931)

William John "Jack" Addis
Born about in Auckland, New Zealandmap [uncertain]
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married 6 Feb 1889 in Opotiki, New Zealandmap
Descendants descendants
Died in Otahuhu, Auckland, New Zealandmap
Profile last modified | Created 23 Nov 2014
This page has been accessed 1,393 times.
William Worked as a Blacksmith.


William John "Jack Addis was born about 1856. His BDM NZ death record has death date as 11/12/1931 while his cemetery record is 12/12/1931.

Jack was a blacksmith and wheelwright. [1]. The site of his Opotiki shop is now the heritage Pattersons building:

"Patterson’s Building and the site it is on have associations with long-standing members of the Opotiki community: the Addis, Parkinson, McGrevy and Patterson families. … Patterson’s Building is within the curtilage of a former smithy owned by W J (Jack) Addis; this was to the northeast of the site of Patterson’s Buildings. “Dozens” of horseshoes have been found in the rear yard during the digging of drains and erecting a fence. The stables of the Royal Hotel were to the south, adjacent to the rear of Patterson’s Buildings and the building may be within the curtilage of their activities also. Addis’s blacksmith and wheelwright business was taken over in 1911 by Samuel Patterson. … In Opotiki in approximately 1898, at the age of 13 years, Sam Patterson was apprenticed to Jack Addis as a blacksmith." [2]

Jack was Chairman of the Opotiki Town Board. [3] He was also an "Opotiki Mounted Rifle Volunteer." [4]

The Bay of Plenty Times announced Jack as a candidate for the Borough of Opotiki's first Mayor in September 1911. The other candidate was utimately voted mayor. "Mayor: H. E. Elliott (elected), 201; W. J. Addis, 166." [5]

The Addis family left Opotiki for Auckland in 1911 (after the blacksmith business was sold).

Son James Leonard Addis's marriage certificate gives his occupation as Grocer - Jack appears to have changed careers after relocating to Auckland.

Jack and his wife Jessie divorced in 1918.

This profile is a collaborative work-in-progress. Can you contribute information or sources?


  1. Addis Bros came to Opotiki in 1866 news article
  2. http://www.heritage.org.nz/the-list/details/7765
  3. NZ Gazette* [accessed at Auckland Central Library, Family Research Collection]. Refer source image - news article dated 14 Jan 1908.
  4. NZ Gazette* [accessed at Auckland Central Library, Family Research Collection]. Refer copy of source image.
  5. Paperspast website. NEW ZEALAND HERALD, VOLUME XLVIII, ISSUE 147691, 9 SEPTEMBER 1911, PAGE 7. BOROUGH OF OPOTIKI. https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/NZH19110909.2.45
  • BDM NZ Death Registration Number: 1931/12532, Family Name: Addis, Given Name(s): William John, Age at Death: 65Y. www.bdmhistoricalrecords.dia.govt.nz
  • Mangere Lawn Cemetery: Burial record. DETAILS OF A BURIAL IN Mangere Lawn CEMETERY. Deceased: ADDIS, William John; Last Address: Mangere; Place of Death: Not Given; Occupation: Retired; Gender: Male; Date of Death: 12/12/1931; Ethnicity: Not Given; Place of Birth: Auckland, New Zealand; Age: 65; Date of Burial: 13/12/1931 Sunday; Plot Location: SOUTH. Plot 451; Burial Depth: Ordinary Depth; Register Entry No.: 403
  • Mangere Cemetery B04.22. Microfiche 757-761. [Auckland Central Library, Family Research Collection]. Mangere Burials: "ADDIS Alice Maud - 83 yrs, widow, d 25 Apr bur 27 Apr 1973. b. London; Edward - 56 yrs, d 18 May bur 20 May 1977. b. London; George - 48 yrs, d. 13 Feb bur 16 Feb 1967. b. England; Jessie - 70 yrs widow. d. 10 May bur 12 May 1935. b. NZ; William John - 65 yrs d. 12 Dec bur 13 Dec 1931. b. Auckland."
  • Volunteer Officer Appointed. NZ Gazette [accessed at Auckland Central Library, Family Research Collection]. Refer source image. "Defence Office, Wellington 24 September 1902. His Excellency the Governor has been pleased to approve of the following appointment: - 'Opotiki Mounted Rifle Volunteers'. William John Addis to be Lieutenant. Date of Commission, 4th June 1902. WM Hall-Jones, Acting Minister of Defence".
  • NZ Gazette "The official Government newspaper and authoritative journal of constitutional record, published since 1841".
  • Heritage NZ website http://www.heritage.org.nz/the-list/details/7765
  • New Zealand, Electoral Rolls, 1853-1981 (ancestry.com). Electoral Year: 1896, District: Bay of Plenty, Region or Province: Bay of Plenty. 17, Addis, Thomas, Opotiki, farmer, freehold, Lot 428, Opotiki; 18, Addis, Julia, Opotiki, domestic duties, residential; 19, Addis, William John, Opotiki, blacksmith, residential; 18, Addis, Jessie, Opotiki, domestic duties, residential.
  • New Zealand, Electoral Rolls, 1853-1981 (ancestry.com). Name: Urba Agnes Addis, Electoral Year: 1919, District: Manukau, Region or Province: Auckland, 38 Addis, Jessie, Yerbury Villa, Amy Street, Ellerslie, married, 40 Addis, Urba Agnes, Amy Street, Ellerslie, spinster, 41 Addis William John, Amy Street, Ellerslie, no occupation.
  • New Zealand, City & Area Directories, 1866-1954 (ancestry.com): 1894-1895, Wise´s New Zealand Post Office Directory p.545. Opotiki. Addis William J, blacksmith. https://www.ancestrylibrary.com.au/interactive/1845/32549_224444__0001-00018
  • Auckland Council website. Index Title Takapuna Borough Council Building Permit Register Index Database 1913-1932. Name of Owner: ADDIS, W J. Name of Builder: SAVAGE, C W. Where Property Situated: Northumberland Avenue. Section (legal description) 11 of 5/8 of 20/23. Date: 20.09.1928. Type of Permit: Dwelling. Permit Number 217. Number of Permits Issued for the year: 61. Archives Reference TCC 427 Item No: 1. Series Title: Building Permit Registers. Record Title: Building Permit Register. http://www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/dbtw-wpd/exec/dbtwpub.dll

Paperspast Articles

  • Paperspast website. Grey River Argus, Volume XXXVII, Issue 6360, 8 February 1889, Page 2. "MARRIAGE. Addis— Foxcroft. On the 6th February, W. J. Addis, blacksmith, Opotikl, to Jessie, third daughter of Mr T. Foxcroft, tinsmith, Greymouth." http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz
  • Paperspast website. NEW ZEALAND POLICE GAZETTE, VOLUME XIV, ISSUE 20, 24 SEPTEMBER 1890. "Incendiarism. At midnight on the 27th ultimo the blacksmith’s shop of William J. Addis, Opotiki, was discovered on fire by the police, and extinguished before any damage was done. A quantity of small wood and pieces of boards were found on the top of some bags of coal which stood against the wall on the outside of the building, and some matches were found at the place. The building is valued at £70, and insured for £25." https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/periodicals/NZPG18900924.2.2
  • Paperspast website. Bay of Plenty Times, Volume XXIV, Issue 3758, 5 October 1898, Page 2 "OPOTIKI: To the prompting of the local paper many thanks are due, and it may claim the credit for bringing out a goodly array of contestants for honours on the Town Board. No less than nine candidates to fill five seats faced the music. The polling was a record one, over 300 papers being given out. For the information of your readers I herewith append the names and number of votes polled for each successful candidate: W. J. Addis, 173 J. C. Arthur, 165 D. McDonald, 154; J. Bell 182; J. T, Tabb, 130." https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/BOPT18981005.2.8
  • Paperspast website. New Zealand Herald, Volume XLII, Issue 12808, 7 March 1905, Page 5. "FIRE AT OPOTIKI. THE INSURANCES. Opotiki. Monday. At midnight on Saturday a fire broke out at the rear of the ironmonger's shop of Mr. W. J. Addis, the shop being completely gutted. The absence of wind, and the energetic and directed efforts of the bucket brigade, saved McGrevy's buildings. Had it not been for the prompt discovery of the fire, and the action of the bucket brigade, the whole of the- southern portion of the town might have been destroyed. Great damage resulted through, the removal of goods from the adjoining five shops. The insurances as far as is known, are as follows:—W. J. Addis (ironmonger), New Zealand office, building £100, stock and fixtures £250; Rostgard Brothers (drapers), Royal Insurance, stock £800; F. H. Bell (grocer). South British, stock £150; McGrevy Brothers' buildings, North British i and Mercantile, £650, stock, in Victoria office, £550." http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz
  • Paperspast website. Bay of Plenty Times, Volume XXXIX, Issue 5697, 1 September 1911, Page 4. "PERSONAL NOTES. Mr W. J. Addis and Mr H. E. Elliott will be the only candidates for the Opotiki Mayoralty." http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz
  • Paperspast website. AUCKLAND STAR, VOLUME LXII, ISSUE 294, 12 DECEMBER 1931. DEATHS. December 11, 1931 at a private hospital, Auckland, William John, aged; 65 years. The funeral will leave the residence of his son, Mr. E. H. Addis, . Kirkbride Road, Mangere, at 3 p.m. tomorrow (Sunday), December 13, for Mangere Cemetery. A, devoted and loving father called to rest." https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AS19311212.2.5

See also:

  • Story by Carl Walrond, 'Food shops - Grocers', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Published 11 Mar 2010, updated 16 Sep 2016 (accessed 8 May 2020) https://teara.govt.nz/en/food-shops/page-1
  • OPOTIKI TOWN CENTRE HISTORIC HERITAGE STUDY PART ONE, Prepared for Opotiki District Council, New Zealand Historic Places Trust, Environment Bay of Plenty By Matthews & Matthews Architects Ltd, Lyn Williams, R A Skidmore and Associates Archaeology B.O.P. March 2006. "The urban area of Opotiki was constituted a borough on May 25 1882 but practised as a Town District. The first meeting of the Opotiki Town Board of Commissioners, with Mr King as Chairman, was on June 26, 1882. The Borough of Opotiki came into being on August 1, 1911. The first borough council was elected on 6th September 1911, the first mayor being Mr H.E. Elliott." https://www.boprc.govt.nz/media/32512/MatthewsMatthews-091119-OpotikiHertiageStudyPart1.pdf

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Categories: Blacksmiths | Mangere Lawn Cemetery, Mangere, Auckland