Leonard Stowe

Biography of Leonard Stowe

Leonard Stowe was born in 1837 in Buckingham, South East England. He was the son of William Stowe (1791-1860), surgeon at Buckingham, and his wife, Mary. His eldest brother, William Henry Stowe (1825–1855), was an English scholar and journalist.

Leonard Stowe emigrated to New Zealand, arriving in Nelson aboard the Lady Alice ship on 14 January, 1859.

Leonard Stowe and his wife Jane Stowe

Leonard Stowe and his wife Jane Stowe (Greenwood) in early 1870s (Image courtesy of Marlborough Museum, Marlborough Historical Society Inc.)

Leonard Stowe in 1902Leonard Stowe married Jane Greenwood, a Wellington artist, on May 31, 1871, in Nelson, New Zealand.

Jane was born on 18 April, 1838, in Charenton-le-Pont, Île-de-France, France, the 3rd daughter of Dr John Danforth Greenwood (1803-1890), a physician, and Sarah Greenwood (nee Field) (1809-1889). She arrived in Nelson, NZ, with her parents and siblings (7 brothers and sisters) aboard the Phoebe ship on 29 March 1843.

Leonard and Jane Stowe had 6 children: 3 sons—Harry, Reginald and Leonard (died as an infant), and 3 daughters—Emily Muriel, Sylvia and Mary Jane.

Leonard Stowe was appointed Clerk of the Marlborough Provincial Council in 1864, then in 1865 Clerk of the Legislative Council and Clerk of Parliament from 1889 (see the nearby photo from 1902 of Stowe as a Clerk of Parliament). Stowe was a notable figure in the Parliamentary life of New Zealand for many years.

Jane Stowe was a delightful watercolorist and used to exhibit her paintings at the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts since 1883 until 1931. She received many prizes and honourable mentions.

Leonard and Jane Stowe lived in a nice wooden house called Te Moana (later known as Tiakiwai) at 2 Tinakori Road, Wellington (see the lower photo from 1880s).

Leonard Stowe was the inventor of Stowe's Patent Calculating Machine.

Leonard Stowe died 83 years of age on 25 April, 1920, and was buried in Bolton Street Cemetery, Wellington.

Jane Stowe died of bronchitis in Wellington on 5 November 1931, aged 93.

Leonard Stowe and his wife Jane Stowe

The house Te Moana (later known as Tiakiwai) at 2 Tinakori Road, Wellington, owned by Leonard and Jane Stowe.