William John Hooper was born on the 8th January 1853 in Chipping Ongar, Essex, England. Son of John Thomas Hooper and Rebecca Page. He is listed on the passenger list for the 'Ann Wilson' which sailed into Wellington Harbour on the Sunday afternoon of 28th March 1857. It was an ill fated voyage and William's sister Sophia Rebecca Hooper is believed to have died at sea during the voyage. It is not know if William attended a School in Wellington prior to the family moving to the Wairarapa. In fact little information can be found on William but it is known that his father John Hooper attained a Crown Land Grant on 23rd November 1867 in the Wairarapa area. John, Rebecca and their son become one of the early settlers of the Carterton district of New Zealand.

          The site for the settlement of Carterton was selected by Isaac Earl Featherston and John Roy as suitable under the Small Farmers Association's settlement scheme. The final plan was selected by a committee of the Provincial Council in February 1857. It was not until 1875 that a town board was established and in 1887 Carterton became a borough. Most of the sites at Carterton were 10acre allotments. At times father and sons were able to acquire allotments side by side which allowed them to combine the two allotments and form a larger more viable farm. Times were not easy and many of the new settlers in Masterton and Greytown worked at small businesses, based on a persons trade, as well as operate their farms in an endeavour to make ends meet. Settlers at Carterton turned to the Government to provide work, for extra income, on building the new roads. Dairy farming was proving profitable and new dairy factories were being established in the Wairarapa district. At one time there was 60 different dairy factories operating during the early years.


                                                                               High Street Carterton abt 1876 (near Toll-Gate)                            High Street Carterton 1910

          William John Hooper married Charlotte Compton on the 10th June 1879 in the home of Maria Compton (nee Cain) who was the mother of the bride, in Masterton. Her father was William Compton. William and Charlotte Hooper had fourteen children, twelve of whom survived into adulthood. It is believed all the children were born whilst the family were living on the farm in Dalefield Road, Carterton. The children attended the Dalefield School in the 1880's and 1890's and were the first generations to do so. The farm at Dalefield passed down through four generations. In the 1880's the farm would have been very primitive and much hard work went into turning the primitive land into a working farm.The lower paddocks were swamp and this was not drained until son, John Thomas Hooper, took over management of the farm in 1921. The farm house was a two story building with a shingle roof and was amongst the first to be built in the district. All the timber in the house was rough sawn with one wall left in it's original state. In later years a new farm house was built and stood nearby. Located on the boundary near the main gate was a blacksmith shop. We do not know if William John Hooper was responsible for establishing it but his son Edgar James Hooper b.1892 worked as a blacksmith in Martinborough and elsewhere and it is understood he learnt the trade at the Dalefield farm. In their retirement years, William and Charlotte built a house in High Street, Carterton and spent the remainder of their years living there.

Charlotte Hooper (nee Compton) in her lovingly tendered garden at High Street, Carterton






William John Hooper (1853-1927) William married 1879 Charlotte Compton (1859-1929)  

            1) Alice May Hooper  (1880 - 1956) married Leonard Matthew Gaskin (    -    )

            2) John Thomas Hooper (1882 - 1930) married Jessie Marion Allen (    -    )

            3) Joseph William Hooper  (Joe)  (1884-1958) married  (1) Pearl Harvey (    -    )  HELP

                                                                                       (2) May (possibly Beatrice) Unknown (    -    )

            4) Walter Henery Hooper  (Wally)  (1885-1959 married Evelyn Ellery Tacon (    -    )

            5) Violet Lucilla Hooper  (1887-1965) married James Kennedy (    -    )

            6) Rose Eveline Hooper  (1890-1960) married  (1) James (Jim) Chandler  (    -     )

                                                                                                    (2) Percival Thomas Roband (    -    )

           (7) Hannah lily Hooper  (1893-1966) married Thomas R. Osbourne  (    -    )

           (8) Edgar James Hooper  (1892-1974) married Alice Maud Reading (    -    )

           (9) Clara Daisy Hooper  (Daisy)  (1895-1972) married James Miscall  (    -    )

         (10) William Frank Hooper  (Frank)  (1897-1980) married Emily L. Sewell (    -    )

         (11) Herbert George Hooper  (1899-1977) married Muriel Violet Chandler  (    -    )

         (12) Ernest Hooper (1901-1901) twin died 14 days old

         (13) Albert Hooper (1901-1901) twin died 16 days old

         (14) Catherine  (Kath or Katherine)  (1905-1980) married Lyle J. Chandler  (    -    )



William and Charlotte's Headstone at Clareville Cemetery, Carterton


          William John Hooper died on 28th of Febuary 1927 aged 74. Charlotte Hooper died on 31st August 1929 aged 70. They are buried in the same grave at Clareville Cemetery, Carterton, New Zealand. Charlotte's last two children were twins born about 31st July 1901. Both babies died. Ernest died at 14 days old. Albert died at 16 days old on the 15th August 1901. The interment date for both babies is given as the 15th August 1901 in Plot 23 at the Clareville Cemetery. Sadly their grave is unmarked.  








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