Given names: 
Given address: 
204 Manchester Street
Sheet No: 201
Central Christchurch

Biography contributed by Angela Potts.

Marie Francis (nee Stuart-Bailey).

Born Paris 1848, married Trinity Church, Galt, Canada October 1874 to Robert Ffoulkes Francis - She died in Christchurch, New Zealand 1911.

How Marie and Robert met will is not  known though they departed together from London to New Zealand on the clipper ship Sir Lancelot. Marie was already six months pregnant and her first child was born at sea while the ship entered Dunedin Harbour in 1876. Another eight children were born in and around the Dunedin area until 1891.

An 1882 diary, written by Robert, recorded that the children had set tasks of duty while they farmed in the outskirts of Dunedin and that for Marie, in particular, life was a significant challenge. At the time Robert owned 10 acres in Waikouaiti County valued at £200.

It was a close family with a strong religious and musical background. Robert owned a music business and shop in Manchester Street, Christchurch and most of the children went into the Methodist or Anglican church. Given that the family were well educated it is not surprising that Marie would have been interested in Kate Sheppard’s ventures. When she signed the 1893 petition she gave her address as 204 Manchester Street, Christchurch.

When Marie and Robert registered to vote in 1893 in the Nelson Electorate their address was listed as Waimea Street . Robert was a 'gentleman' and she was 'domestic duties'.

Marie died six years after Robert, in 1911, aged 64 years. Her estate was valued at £10,617 9s 8d. An inventory included a room by room description of articles, plus a horse, trap and harness. Her home would have been quite a substantial home for the time in 1911. The music business continued until the 1950s when it was bought out.


Marie Francis

Portrait of Marie Francis

Headstone at Linwood Cemetery - headstone of Robert ffoulkes Francis 1905

Three Generations 1910 
Standing: Caroline Emily Rowe; Sitting: Marie Francis holding 1st grandchild Phyllis Annie Marie Rowe

Francis Family c1896 with all nine children

Main source

[1] The Unfinished Story of Emily Major and Charles Stuart Bailey by Angela Potts (2007) ISBN 13: 978-0-473-10625-6

Click on sheet number to see the 1893 petition sheet this signature appeared on. Digital copies of the sheets supplied by Archives New Zealand.

How to cite this page

'M. Francis', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 17-Aug-2018

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