CYCLOPEDIA OF NZ 1897
FRASER, De Gennes
Rear: Don Fraser [son of Valentine & Alice Fraser], Valentine Fraser [son of De Gennes Fraser], De Gennes Fraser, Archer Lovat Fraser [son of De Gennes Fraser]
Centre: Isabel Fraser [daughter of Valentine & Alice Fraser], Alice Fraser, Jean Fraser [daughter of Archer & Lillian Fraser], Amy Isobel Fraser [Williams], Lillian Nelson Fraser [Watt]
Front: Marie Fraser [daughter of Archer & Lillian Fraser], Henry De Gennes Fraser [son of Archer & Lillian Fraser].
Photo courtesy of relative.
Mr. De Gennes Fraser is Engineer to the Pahiatua County Council, and, like his brother officer, Mr. Moore, his appointment dates from the declaration of the county. Mr. Fraser is the son of the late Colonel Thomas Gamble Fraser, of the One Hundred and First late Bombay Fusiliers, and was born at Kurachee, in British India. He was educated at the Marlborough College, England, finishing at Sydney College, Bath. He studied for his profession under his cousin, Colonel Thomas Fraser, of the Royal Engineers. At the early age of eighteen Mr. Fraser passed his examinations as an engineer, and subsequent to his arrival in New Zealand gained his certificate as a surveyor. Arriving in Dunedin in the year 1870, he joined the Government Survey Department some two years later, and was for nine years under Mr. J. W. A. Marchant, then Chief Surveyor of the Wellington District. After this Mr. Fraser had large experience in the Taranaki District, surveying chiefly from the
Waitotara northwards. At this time he had charge of a party that met some difficulty with the natives. It was the cook of Mr. Fraser's party, John McLean, who was murdered by the native Hiroki, who escaped to Parihaka, and was not captured until the taking of that Maori stronghold. From 1882 to 1886 Mr. Fraser was engaged in private contract work, and, in conjunction with Mr. Edward Tregear, surveyed and formed many of the roads of the Waitotara and Waverley districts. For three years Mr. Fraser was employed by the Government on the West Coast Commission service, surveying the native reserves, under Sir Wm. Fox, after which he was engaged in conjunction with Mr. Norman McDonald, in private contracts at Hunterville and Hawera, and then at the Tiraumea Special Settlement, the Woodville-Mangahao and the Woodville Mangatainoka districts. In his present position Mr. Fraser has formed about 135 miles of road in the Pahiatua County, and has designed and constructed no less than fourteen large and important bridges. The Ngaturi bridge over the Tiraumea, which has just been completed, is 244 feet long, which is taken in two spans of 122 feet each. At the time of writing a bridge is being thrown across the Mangahao river, in
three spans, two spans of forty-three feet, and a centre one of 120, and a similar one over the Tiramea, about three miles north of Ngaturi bridge. During the time that Mr. Fraser has held office upwards of £60,000 has been spent in the construction of roads and bridges in this district. Mr. Fraser's certificates and testimonials are of a very high order indeed, and bear the signatures of Mr. G. W. Williams, Chief Surveyor of the Southland district, Mr. J. W. A. Marchant, Chief Surveyor of the Canterbury district, Mr. Thomas Humphries, Chief Surveyor of the Napier district, Mr. H. Lufkin Skeet, Chief Surveyor of the West Coast Royal Commission, etc. Mr. Fraser is also a member of the New Zealand Institute of Surveyors, is licensed under the Land Transfer Acts, and holds a certificate of authorisation from the Surveyor-General. The Pahiatua County Council is to be congratulated on retaining the services of a gentleman so well qualified by experience to watch over the interests of the district.
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