DUNCAN, Sir Thomas Andrew
Pastoralist and philanthropist.
Thomas Duncan was born at Wanganui on 6 June 1873, the son of John Duncan, of Otairi Station, Hunterville, and of Catherine Hammond. Otairi was his home for the whole of his life. Duncan early showed an interest in local affairs and was an active member of the Wanganui Chamber of Commerce. He became a Justice of the Peace, and was for 18 years a member of the Rangitikei County Council. In 1924 Duncan joined the New Zealand Meat Producers' Board and became its chairman in 1931, a position he held for nearly 10 years. In 1896 Duncan married Jeannie Priscilla McKelvie by whom he had four sons and three daughters. They endowed a hospital for the Sister Kenny treatment of neuro-muscular patients at Silverstream, Wellington, in 1945. When the hospital was transferred to Wanganui in 1948 they added greatly to its endowments. They also gave generously to many causes and in 1947 Duncan made a gift to Britain of 200 bullocks. He was created Kt. in 1951 and died at Hunterville on 6 March 1960.
Sir Thomas Duncan was a successful breeder of racehorses, and as a pastoralist insisted on the importance of maintaining the highest quality in stock.
by Keith Kennedy Campbell, M.A.(N.Z.), Lecturer in Philosophy, University of Melbourne.
- Evening Post, 7 Mar 1960 (Obit).