James Ibbs Lawson[1]

Male 1861 - 1896  (35 years)


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  • Name James Ibbs Lawson 
    Born 7 Feb 1861  Ulverstone, Lancashire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Will 18 Jul 1891  Invercargill, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Died 2 Jul 1896  Wanganui, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 4, 5, 6, 7
    Address:
    Pohangina Bridge 
    Probate 18 Aug 1896  Wanganui, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  [8
    Obituary 1 Jan 1897  [9
    _UID B59A509F65B242CFB882B17CB1A37554EAD1 
    Person ID I3732  Treefive
    Last Modified 3 Oct 2013 

    Father John Lawson,   b. 28 Aug 1830, Darlington, County Durham, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1916, Auckland, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 85 years) 
    Mother Emma Stansfield,   b. 1 May 1834, Bury, Lancashire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1913, Auckland, New Zealand Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 78 years) 
    Married Abt 1857  England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F1268  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 


    • James’ life story, as much as is known, is well covered by his obituary and a description of the contents of his will.

      Obituary of James Ibbs Lawson as printed in Minutes of the Proceedings of the Institute of Civil Engineers, Volume 127, Issue 1897, page 390
       
      JAMES IBBS LAWSON was born at Ulverston on the 7th February, 1861, partly educated at the Merchant Taylors’ School, Great Crosby, near Liverpool.  In 1872 his father, Mr. James Lawson, left England to settle in New Zealand, and the subject of this memoir completed his schooling at Christ’s College, Christchurch, in that colony.  In May, 1876, he was articled to Mr. Charles Napier Bell, and was employed on the execution of extensive sewerage works for the City of Christchurch.  On the expiry of his pupilage Mr. Lawson entered the mechanical branch of the New Zealand Railways, and worked in the shops at Christchurch until August, 1880, when he was transferred to the Maintenance Department, under Mr. J. H. Lowe.  There he was engaged in general railway work,the experience thus gained fitting him for the responsible position of assistant engineer to the Southland division, to which he was appointed in 1886, with the charge of 267 miles of railway and the control of the working staff.  In 1888 he was advanced to resident-engineer of the same district. His devotion to his duties was so marked that he was specially indicated for promotion, and, at the time of his death, he had been for four years district-engineer of the Napier-Taranaki section, with responsible charge of 407 miles of open railway.
      A sad accident brought Mr. Lawson’s promising career to an end.  On the 2nd Jul, 1896, in company with Mr. Lowe, the chief engineer, he inspected the permanent way, which had been considerably damaged by severe floods in the Hawkes Bay district, and entered an express train at Kaikora intending to proceed to Palmerston.  As the train approached the long bridge spanning the Pohangina River, near Ashurst, Mr. Lawson stepped on to the platform of the carriage for the purpose of examining the structure while passing over it.  He leaned too far forward and, his head coming in violent contact with a portion of the bridge, he was wrenched from the platform and hurled into the river below, his body not being recovered.
      Mr. Lawson was elected as Associate Member on the 6th December, 1887.

      [NOTE: The body was found on 12 January 1897 by a 15 year old boy fishing in the Manawatu River.  The inquest on 14 January found that the body was that of James Ibbs Lawson and that the cause of death was falling off a railway carriage whilst crossing the Pohangina Railway Bridge.]

      Will of James Ibbs Lawson

      James made his last will on 18 July 1891 at Invercargill. He appointed his brother William Merchant Lawson and his brother-in-law Arthur Hughes Turnbull of Christchurch, Manager of the Farmers Co-operative Society, as the executors of his will.  In the will, he gave:
       
      to his mother Emma - all money due under his life assurance policy;
      to his sisters Annie and Nell - fifty pounds each also all compensation money due to him by the New Zealand Government, to be divided equally between them but if the Government failed to pay the compensation money, he gave 150 pounds to each of them;
      to his niece Marjorie Turnbull - the daughter of his Sister Caroline, his freehold property at Hornby junction near Christchurch;
      to his brother Fred - his freehold property at Half Moon Bay, Stewart Island, also all his engineering books, plans, pamphlets and drawing instruments;
      to his brother William - his watch, chain and appendages, gun and two theodolites.
      to his brothers William and Fred, jointly share and share alike - all his real and personal property not already otherwise disposed of.

  • Sources 
    1. [S831] TRE068 Family tree Lawson, John and Stansfield, Emma, TRE068.

    2. [S832] WIL011 Will - Lawson, James Ibbs, WIL011., James Ibbs Lawson; 18 July 1891.

    3. [S837] DTH040 Death Lawson, James Ibbs, DTH040.

    4. [S838] DTH098 Death notice Lawson, James Ibbs, DTH098., Death notice for James Ibbs Lawson; about 22 July 1896.

    5. [S839] DTH117 Death - In Memoriam notice - Lawson, James Ibbs, DTH117., In Memoriam - James Ibbs Lawson; 2 July 1996; 3 July 1896; section 4 page 7 (2 Jul); section 6 page 9 (3 Jul).

    6. [S841] DTH133 Death report - Lawson, James Ibbs, DTH133., Report on death of James Ibbs Lawson; 3 July 1896; Report titled "Shocking death of a Railway official".

    7. [S842] DTH134 Death notice Lawson, James Ibbs, DTH134., Offer by John Lawson of reward for recovery of the body of his son James Ibbs Lawson; 7 July 1896.

    8. [S832] WIL011 Will - Lawson, James Ibbs, WIL011., James Ibbs Lawson; 18 July 1891; Probate granted in the District Court at Wanganui on 18 August 1896.

    9. [S843] OBT017 Obituary Lawson, James Ibbs, OBT017., Obituary, James Ibbs Lawson, 1861-1896; 1 January 1897; Minutes of the Proceedings - Institution of Civil Engineers (/contents/serial/imotp), Volume 127, Issue 1897, 1 Jan 1897, page 390, E-ISSN: 1753-7843; Author: unknown.