Henry and Eliza Murcott


Henry and Eliza Murcott nee Harman: Seaview Cemetery Block 2 Plot 31 & 32

Henry Murcott, was born in November 1888 to Lucy Murcott at Aniseed Valley, Nelson.  He was the youngest of Lucy's four children, who were raised by Lucy on her father's farm. Henry went to Wairoa Gorge School situated at Garden Valley then River Terrace School.


The headstone of Henry and Eliza Murcott. Seaview Cemetery

About 20 September 1901, at the age of about fifteen, Henry lost his arm as the result of a shooting accident.  He took a muzzle loading gun to school to shoot birds, and placed the gun in a bush on the way to school.  When returning to retrieve it he picked up the gun by the barrel and the trigger went off.  A man on the other side of the river heard the screams and came to the scene cutting off his arm with a pocket knife and tied a shoe lace around the stump, then he took Henry to Nelson Hospital by horse and cart.

Henry married Eliza Jane Harman at St John's Church Wakefield in July 1913. They farmed at Mount Heslington, then they purchased a farm at the end of Teapot or Garden Valley in 1918. Henry managed to farm, drive a car and served on several education committees despite one arm. He died on 25 August 1951 at Nelson Hospital, aged 62.

st johns wakefield

St Johns Church Wakefield

Eliza Jane Harman was born at Brightwater, Waimea South, on 13 February 1888, the daughter of Henry and Eliza Ann Harman. The River Terrace School records show Eliza Jane commenced school aged five, and left school on 19 November 1903, aged 14 years, with her next destination recorded as "home”.

Eliza and Henry had four children and the girls, Violet and Gwen later lived in the family bach at Monaco. From there they biked to work in Nelson, where both worked in offices as shorthand typists. When the sisters had a party, if the tide was in when it was time for the guests to go home, the party just had to keep going as the tide was well up the drive and over the sandy road -  just as it is today.

Eliza died on 7 May 1951 at Monaco where she and Henry were living with their daughter Gwen.

2017 (updated 2021)

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