Given names: 
Given address: 
Sheet No: 225

Biography contributed by Joyce Hislop

Barbara Rapley was baptised on 2 August 1840 in the village of Oakley, Surrey. She was the eighth of 14 children born to William, an agricultural labourer, and Mary (nee Hersey) Rapley. Barbara was 12 years old when the family arrived in Lyttelton on the Minerva in February 1853.

Barbara married William King on 26 October 1858. William, according to a niece, was a man who had spent years in Hawkes Bay felling bush and was rough and uncouth and Barbara had to grow rough to match him. A family of fourteen children followed: Harry William (1859-?), Elizabeth (1860-1934), Michael Hersey (1862-1918), John (1863-1930), Charles (1854-?), Ernest (1867-1929), Lucy (1869-?), Arthur (1870-1950), Flora (1872-1875), Frederick (1873-1943), Albert James (1874-1936), Frank (1876-1963), Edward Lincoln (1877-1953) and Edgar Joseph (1879-1945).

By 1867 William and Barbara were farming at Flaxton where most of the children were baptised. Barbara separated from William before 1884 and the Electoral Roll of 1893 has her living in Hill’s Road Richmond. In the 1905-6 Electoral Roll Barbara’s entry has her living in Lincoln Rd, Spreydon, a storekeeper and widow. According to her niece she was a forceful character and her sons were certain their mother would need two graves as one would never satisfy her! 

Barbara died in Christchurch Hospital on 3 October 1919 age 79 years. Her funeral left from her son Frederick’s home in Heathcote and she is buried in the Woolston (now Rutherford) Cemetery.



Shipping Records

Electoral Rolls

Papers Past

Family recollections

NB: Barbara King is a sister-in-law of Lavinia Rapley (Page 503)Kezia Rapley (Page 217) and Sarah Rapley (Page 185).

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

'Mrs King', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 19-Jun-2019

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