HISTORIC TE AUTE.
Relations, connections, and old friends of the Williams family assembled at Te Aute on Wednesday the 27th inst. to express their affectionate congratulations to Mr. Allen Williams, on the 80th anniversary of his birth. The picturesque old house nestling at the foot of the tree-clad hill, the spacious lawns, the glowing ﬂower beds, the noble trees, formed a worthy setting for so interesting a gathering.
Mr. and Mrs. Williams received their guests on the front lawn. While tea was being served, the 80 candles were lit by his grandchildren, while the great-grandson, in sturdy indifference to his surroundings, climbed up and down the verandah steps.
Mrs. Ellison, of Te Aute, on behalf of his Maori friends, presented Mr. Williams with a richly carved aka-ake walking stick, such as are used by the old rangatiras to lean on rather than to walk with. She said it was an offering to one who had been a father to her people, a trusted friend and adviser in all their troubles and difficulties for over 50 years.
Mr. Williams in characteristic and witty vein thanked the assembled guests for their congratulations, and in the course of his remarks said that this was the third outstanding birthday in his life, the ﬁrst one being some 80 years ago and he could hardly remember it.
His health was then drunk with musical honours and old and young joined in hearty cheers for Mr. and Mrs Allen Williams. As one of the guests remarked, “Our host has had an outstanding inﬂuence in this young country, a perfect gentleman in the true sense, a leader of men, honourable to a degree and with a keen sense of humour, he has left his mark on the characters of all who have come within his inﬂuence and it is seldom that appearance and character are so ﬁtly blended, for at 80 years of age he stands erect – a noble ﬁgure of a man.”
Amongst those present were: Miss Marianne Williams, Miss Lydia Williams, the Bishop of Waiapu, Miss Sdith [Edith] Williams, Mr. and Mrs. F. W. Williams, Mr. and Mrs. Ellison, Mrs. Thompson, Mrs. Brightwell, Mr. and Mrs. George Williams, Mr. and Mrs. Gilbertson, Mr. and Mrs. Greville Warren, Major and Mrs. Warren, Miss Keith, Mr. George Nelson, Miss Gardiner, Mrs. W. T. Williams, Mr. Kettle, Mrs. Fitzroy, Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Williams, Miss Hilda Williams, Rev. S.R. Gardiner, Misses Ellen, Emma and Ada Williams, Mr. Robert Brathwaite, Mr. Brian Williams, Dr. and Mrs. Wilson, Mr. and Mrs. Thos. Crosse, Mrs. Sunderland and her three boys, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Nelson, Mr. James Nelson, Mrs. C. H. MacLean, Miss Sally MacLean, Mrs. Alick Williams, Miss Sally Williams, Mr. Arthur Cooper, Mr. Charles Nairn, Mr. and Mrs. Sam Williams, Mr. and Mrs. Norman Avery, Miss Lubbrook [Ludbrook], Mr. and Mrs. Athol Williams, Mr. John Miller, Mr. and Mrs. Colin White, Canon Arthur Williams, Mr. Loten, Mrs. Neild, Miss Neild, Mrs. Coleman, Miss Marjorie Williams, Mr. and Mrs. John Chambers, Miss Chambers, Mr. and Mrs. H. M. Campbell, Mr. Herrick, Miss Fitzroy, Mr. Reed, Miss Eileen Davies, Miss Olive Williams, Mr. and Mrs. Reginald Gardiner, Misses Faith and Michael Gardiner and the members of Mr. Allen Williams’ family – Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Williams, Mrs. Douglas Williams, Mrs. Faulkner; the grandchildren – David, Stephen, Clemency and Dina [Dinah] Williams, Mrs. Parker, Fred and Mary Faulkner, Bruce and Donald Williams and the great-grandson, James Allen Parker. The only grandchildren unable to be present were: Mrs. Dick Tripe, Prudence and Ian Faulkner.