Also known as
- Tawa AWMM
- Tawatawhiti AWMM
Medals and Awards
- New Zealand Cross (NZC) AWMM
Gilbert Mair was awarded the NZC on 1 April 1886 for preventing the negotiation of a truce between the Te Awara elders and Te Kooti in February 1870. It was believed at the time that "Mair had prevented a massacre of the inhabitants of Rotorua while their fighting force was away." (DNZB, p. 261) AWMM
- New Zealand Medal AWMM
POW liberation details
POW serial number
Gilbert Mair was the eighth of twelve children to Elizabeth Gilbert Puckey and Gilbert Mair, a merchant trader in kauri gum.
Two of his brothers, Cpt. Henry Abbott Mair and Mjr. William G. Mair, were also both active in the New Zealand Wars. See Henry and William's individual Cenotaph records for more details.
In helping his father with his kauri gum business, Gilbert Mair had frequent contact with the Te Awara people and subsequently learned to speak Maori fluently and acquired a life-long interest in Maori culture and history.
He obtained his provincial surveyor's certificate in 1864.
He was employed as clerk of court and interpreter at the Resident Magistrate's Court in Tauranga in 1867, when fighting errupted over confiscation of lands within the Pirirakau hapu's tribal boundaries.
Mair married Eleanor Katherine Sperrey on 19 September 1888 while in his mid- forties. They had a son, who died in childhood, and a daughter.
"In 1901 [Mair] organized the celebrations in Rotorua for the visit of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and of York." (DNZB, p. 261)
He was also an avid collector of Maori artifacts. His collection was purchased by the Auckland Institute and Museum. AWMM
Roll of Honour
Remember Gilbert Mair by laying a poppy.
Leave a note
Leave a tribute or memory of
- Cowan, J. (1922). The New Zealand wars : a history of the Maori campaigns and the pioneering period. Vol. 1 1845-1865. Wellington, N.Z.: Government Print. AWMM
- Moorhead, M. (2005). The Queen's Heroes: Victoria and New Zealand Crosses. New Plymouth, N.Z.: Zenith. AWMM
The development of the Online Cenotaph is an ongoing process; updates, new images and records are added weekly. In some cases, records have yet to be confirmed by Museum staff, and there could be mistakes or omissions in the information provided.