Maishman Family

Page 3

Issue 10 Christmas 2003



Ivy Rubie was born Ivy Thorington at 24 Harpour Road, Barking, Essex (London East End) on 25 January 1908. She was the eldest daughter of Sydney Brown and Florence Elizabeth Thorington (née Seymour). Her father came out to New Zealand three years later in 1911, following the lead of his elder brother George Thorrington, to find work and a year later, still when Ivy was about 4 years old, she and her mother and younger brother Sydney Stephen (born 30 Nov 1909) followed on the "Arawa" arriving in Welington in February 1913. They journeyed to Auckland by train. Note that Ivy's grandfather had died five days before her brother Syd was born and her grandmother had died a few years before having contracted Typhoid from drinking contaminated water from a well, so there was little to keep them in England. Ivy's sister, Win was born later that year on 9 November 1913. Her father drove a horse and dray, when he first came to NZ, carrying cargo from the wharves. He later became a Motorman on the Trams. They settled initially in Eden Crescent for about five years and later moved to Grey Lynn where for most of her youth she resided with her parents at 49 Sackville St.
Following her formal education she was said to have worked for a time as a Milliner. She worked at the offices of Adams Bruce Ltd as a Bookkeeper for six years from about 1924 until 14 February 1930. Lewis Eady Ltd then employed her for four months in Bookkeeping up until 14 June 1930. From then until her marriage she was a Bookkeeper at T.W. Hutton, which was a clothing and costume manufacturer. This diversity of occupation and education demonstrates something of the wide range of skills she possessed. On 24 September 1930 she joined the International Order of Good Templars.

On 16 March 1931 she married John (Jack) Henry Rubie, who was a Petty Officer Stoker with the Royal Navy in NZ, at the time on the HMS Diomede. In the few months after they were married, until Jack finished in the Navy in August 1931 with the rank of Chief Petty Officer, Ivy and her brother lived on her father-in-law's farm in Kaukapakapa. This was depression times. Jack and Ivy farmed for a time in the King Country near to Jack's family in Raetihi and later moved back to Kaukapakapa to farm and purchase from Jack's father the 100 acre property north of the village. In July 1933, 3 months before Syd was born, the farmhouse in Raetihi was burnt to the ground destroying virtually all their possessions. They moved to Kaukapakapa about 18 months after Syd's birth (4 November 1933). During the farming years in Kaukapakapa Ivy and Jack had 3 more children Des (born 21 May 1938), Edith (born 25 April 1942) and Stephen (born 21 May 1949). The farm was primarily dairy and pigs but later they added bees and ducks and still later began to specialise in poultry. During most of this time the family attended the Kaukapakapa Methodist Church and Ivy was also active in the Women’s Division of Federated Farmers. Their retirement years were spent at 43 Trigg Rd Huapai from 1962 where an extensive vegetable and flower garden was developed. Ivy and Jack were robbed of their 50th wedding anniversary by little more than a year when Jack died on 2 January 1980. Ivy continued to live on the property enjoying her garden, craft activities and many friends until a few years ago when she moved to Taupo to live with her daughter Edith in order to rest out her declining years. She had a particular love for Fox Terriers and had "Sam" as an inseparable companion for a number of years at Trigg Rd and in Taupo.

Ivy remained active in arts and crafts until Easter of this year when her health began to deteriorate. Her life was generally a very happy one despite the Great Depression years and two World Wars and was characterised by her love for her saviour Jesus Christ as she had become an active Christian at the Billy Graham Crusade at Carlaw Park in the late 1950's and she was subsequently baptised at the Auckland Baptist Tabernacle. Her one regret was that she never returned to her birthplace even though she made several overseas trips, which included Canada, Australia and Norfolk Island.

A remarkable, thirteen grandchildren, thirty-five great grandchildren and four great, great grandchildren survive Ivy (in addition to her own four children).

Her life spans almost a century of technological advancement from the last days of the horse and cart to the transition to the automobile, past the advent of the atomic bomb, the landing of men on the moon through to this present computer-oriented and sophisticated age of medical achievement. Over her life she developed and displayed a character that embodies all that is best in the love of a daughter, wife and mother, for her parents, her husband and her family.

Ivy died peacefully at her daughter’s home on 19 May 2003.

Written by Steve Rubie May 2003