Edward Hudson: Pioneer Publican

A DigitalNZ Story by wendymac

Edward Hudson is my great great grandfather, his wife Mary was the daughter of Thomas Ashwell, a whaler, and Mere Makarini Potete. Mary was born in 1840 and was only 16 when married to Edward Hudson in Dunedin in 1856. An article published in the Nth Otago Times in 1869 tells us that in 1860 Hudson came overland from Dunedin with a dray and horse team , which was probably the first horse team in Oamaru. The article also says that a dwelling on Thames St was enlarged by Ned Hudson as the Oamaru Hotel. Hudson's frequent court appearances mean we can see a slice of his life as a publican. At various times he was fined for not displaying a lamp, allowing after hours drinking, allowing games of chance and allowing an ass to wander in the street. He also appears as a plaintiff in cases of theft and defamation. By 1868 Hudson was also co-proprietor of the Empire Hotel, maybe he overextended himself because he was made bankrupt in 1871. However he seems to be back in business at the Empire Hotel quite quickly and in 1876 he took over the license for the Shamrock Hotel. Possibly he was again over extended because he was bankrupt again by 1878, this was discharged in 1880 and this is where the record in the North Otago Times ends. It would be good to know more about Mary, but she only appears as "wife of". The 1875 Magistrates Court cutting includes the phrase "when Mrs Hudson was alive.." My great grandmother Maud Mary appears in the 1865 Birth Notice, by 1888 she had found her way to Te Nui, Castlepoint where she married my great grandfather Alexander Gray Stewart.