John JOHNSTON is assumed to have been born at Ardrossan,Ayr, Scotland c1841. This was before birth registrations were introduced in Scotland and parish and census records have not produced any evidence to corroborate this. His Death certificate says he was in New Zealand for 42 years, which means he arrived c1862. He married Jane Harriett BALL 4 August 1864 and gave his age as 24. The witnesses to the marriage were William BALL, carpenter, Catherine BALL and Thomas SCAIFE.
"Nelson Colonist" Newspaper
'On 4 August 1864 at Nelson, by Rev W KIRK, Mr John JOHNSTON to Jane Harriett, daughter of Mr William BALL,Washington Valley,Nelson.
Their children were:
William Henry born 1865;died 1913,Takaka
Clara Alice born 1867 (my Great-Grandmother);married William Charles PARKER
Most of the information I know about John comes from his Obituary.
John JOHNSTON's OBITUARY (from"Nelson Evening Mail" 21 November 1904)
'The death is announced of Captain John JOHNSTON who passed away at his residence,Washington Valley, yesterday, at the age of 64. The deceased, who was a native of Scotland, came to New Zealand" in one of HM vessels in 1862, after serving in the China War. He has followed the sea nearly all his life, and was recognised amongst the profession as a first class seaman. Captain JOHNSTON has been master of several vessels trading on the New Zealand coast. He served in the Nelson Pilot boat in 1868 and was subsequently a petty-Officer in the Port Naval Brigade. As a mark of respect to the deceased,the flags at the port and on shipping were at half-mast today.
The late Captain leaves a widow and large family to mourn their loss'.
He married before 1875 so was not required to give information about his parents for his marriage Certificate. His Death Certificate has "not known'' in the place for information about his parents.
"Nelson Evening Mail" Wednesday November 23 1904
JOHNSTON On November 22nd 1904, at his late residence Washington Valley after a short illness, captain John JOHNSTON, native of Ardrossan,Scotland aged 63 years.
Jane 's Death Notice
'On 3rd October at her residence, Washington Valley, Jane Harriett,relict of the late captain John JOHNSTON, in her 69th year. She arrived with her parents on the "Palmyra". She is survived by four sons,William,Takaka; Arthur,Dunedin; John Edward,Palmerston North; Lionel John,Marton;and three daughters, Mrs Charles PARKER, Waipawa; Mrs Mark LEVY,Nelson' Mrs Henry Kirby,Masterton.'
Camelia Helen (sometimes recorded as Helen Camelia) born 6 Nov 1872?,married Henry A KIRBY;died 26 February 1913. ("Nelson Colonist" 'Helen Camelia, daughter of Mr J JOHNSTON, to Henry Austin KIRBY of Christchurch,son of Mr Osmyn KIRBY')
Maud Catherine born 1873;married (1) Mark LEVY 31 March 1902, (2) Bill STALKER;died 20 October 1948. ("Nelson Colonist" 31 March 1902, Mark J LEVY to Maud JOHNSTON). Buried 23 October 1948,Wakapuaka Cemetery,Nelson.
John Edward born 1874
Sarah Ann born c1877;died 14 September 1897
Henry Warren, born 1880;married Violet FAHY.("Nelson Colonist" 'on 5 August 1908, Henry Warren JOHNSTON, Captain of SS "Barckley" to Violet FAHY of Otago. [Camelia was a bridesmaid]
Lionel Andrew born 19 Dec 1889;died 6 August 1967,Palmerston North. His child was Thora, who married Peter QUIRKE. Their child is Keith QUIRKE.
Herbert Arthur married Annie Louisa FOULDS 1918;died 21 July 1962.
In the 1882 Freeholders, John was listed as a Mariner of Melson, with property to the value of 150 pounds.
John is listed in the New Zealand section of the Register of British ships as the Master of "Elsie".