Masterton’s first store – shown here in the late 1850s – was owned and run by Sarah Masters, daughter of Joseph Masters. Her first husband, Richard Iorns, died in 1855. A famous story tells of the widowed Sarah travelling over the Rimutaka track and being spotted by a labourer, Henry Bannister. He fell for Sarah and followed her back to Masterton, where his leg was broken in a dispute with another suitor. Sarah nursed him back to health, and they fell in love. The couple married and had 14 children.
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