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T. Blake was born on 14 June 1849, apparently in Cowes, on the Isle of Wight, off the coast of England. His father was Timothy HUFFAM, a brewer by trade, and his mother Catherine BLAKE, from a family of brewers. T. Blake was the eldest of four sons. There may have been a sister, Mary (who would have been the youngest), but little is known of her. It is a fact however, that Catherine died on the 12th of February 1862, when T. Blake was just 12. It may have been this death, among other things, that compelled his father Timothy, to pack up his four sons and leave England, never to return.

T. Blake lived at Bark Bay with his three brothers and father from 1869 until about 1885, when on the 20th of June, he married Jane JACOBSEN. He was 36 and she was 21. They shared a common interest - painting, and some of their descendants display paintings by one or the other in their homes. T. Blake and Jane had five children - Julius Valentine Blake (Jule or Jules to the family), Dorothea, Runa, Iva and Blake. Both Jules and Dorothea died young - Jules in 1919 (aged 30) in Cologne, Germany during World War One, and Dorothea in 1912 as a result of influenza. She was only 21.

T. Blake wrote a series of articles for the Nelson Evening Mail in 1932. They show an intelligent and highly resourceful family.

Click here to read Number One detailing Early Memories (including viewing Donati's comet), Royalty at Church, Yachting at Cowes, an American Yacht Race and Naval Experiments.

Click here to read Number Two relating tales of The American Civil War, Gladstone, the Meteoric Shower of 1866, and Elections of 100 Years Ago.

Click here to read Number Three where T. Blake writes of the Trip to New Zealand and arrival in Bland Bay, a Visit to Stoke, and a Comparison of the new country to the old.

Read T. Blake's Obituary
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