My name is Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone and I started this site.
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News articles
Obituaries:Liam Jackson Nicholas Ball
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on Dec 16 2014 03:03

Sadly we have to farewell another member of our family. Liam Jackson Nicholas Ball was born on the 1st of December 2014 at 8.11pm, and died peacefully in the arms of family at 9.22pm on the same day. Liam was the loved son of Amelia and Simon, and wee brother to Kaiden and Ashton, and may he play for eternity with his big sister Chloe. Liam will be greatly missed by his family and grandparents.
"Remember me in the family tree
My name, my days, my strife;
Then I'll ride upon the wings of time
And live an endless life."
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Obituaries:Wayne James Bernard Rillstone
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on July 22 2014 17:40

Sadly we have to mark the passing of another member of our family. Wayne James Bernaed Rillstone who passed away in Perth Australia on the 23rd of July 2014.

"Remember me in the family tree
My name, my days, my strife;
Then I'll ride upon the wings of time
And live an endless life."

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Obituaries:Lena Joy Rillstone 1938-2013
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on Sep 19 2013 03:46

Sadly we have to mark the passing of another member of our family Lena Joy Rillstone who passed away on the 11th of September 2013. Dearly loved wife of David Rillstone and much loved mother of Simon, Timothy, and Anna-Lea

"Remember me in the family tree
My name, my days, my strife;
Then I'll ride upon the wings of time
And live an endless life."

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Obituaries:Chloe Lillian Grace Ball
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on June 1 2013 03:57

My very much loved granddaughter Chloe Lillian Grace Ball passed away unexpectedly on the 28th of May 2013 aged 2 and a half years. The only daughter and youngest child of my youngest son Simon Lindsay Peter Ball and his partner Amelia Turner. Chloe is survived by her two brothers Ashton and Kaiden.

"Remember me in the family tree
My name, my days, my strife;
Then I'll ride upon the wings of time
And live an endless life."

“There is no foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world,"
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Obituaries:Janine Tanya Holt
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on Oct 31 2011 16:56

Sadly today we have to mark the passing of another member of our family Janine Tanya Holt the dearly loved daughter of Claudette and the late Richard Thomas Rillstone 1944-2011, and loved sister of Jason and Leonie and Simone and Steve.

"Remember me in the family tree
My name, my days, my strife;
Then I'll ride upon the wings of time
And live an endless life."

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Media:Rev Thomas Rillstone
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on July 15 2011 18:16

Rev Thomas Rillstone

Copied from: The Argus (Melbourne)

Saturday 23 November 1940 pg8

In the Churches


Because missionary boards are finding it difficult to maintain at normal levels the evangelistic, educational, and medical activities on missionary stations, a strong appeal is now being made in Victoria for more contributions.

The income of all missions controlled from Australia has been lower this quater Than for many years This Is primarily, due to the stopping of contributions from England which It has been computed by the National Missionary Council of Australia and amounted to £1600 000 a year Necessary requirements for the missions cost £ 1 000 100 a year.

The missionary authorities aimed to1 raise at least £1000 000 more than the usual contributions in Australia this year It is estimated that 3 456 missionaries will be affected unless the extra money is raised. They represent 13 per cent of the missionary force of the world.

To-morrow afternoon a recital will be given by the Hawthorn Citadel (Salvation Army) band at St Pauls Cathedral A collection will be taken up for the League of Soldiers Friends which is maintaining the soldiers hut In the Cathedral Close

Rev Kevin Mangan and Rev Phillp Crosbie have left St Columbian’ s College Essendon to engage In missionary work in Korea They will be followed shortly by Rev Fathers Gordon Jackson Kiernan White and Thomas Rillstone.

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Obituaries:Richard Thomas Rillstone 1944-2011
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on May 15 2011 23:23

RILLSTONE, Richard Thomas. Passed away suddenly but peacefully on Thursday 12 May 2011, aged 67 years. Adored husband and best friend of Claudette. Loved father and father-in-law to Jason and Leonie, Simone and Steve, Janine and Tim, and darling Grandad of his 3 princesses Isabella, Gemma and Mia and his 4 legged babies Nero, and Ottis. Requiem Mass will be celebrated at St Michael's, 6 Beatrice Road, Remuera at 1 pm on Monday 16 May 2011, followed by burial at Purewa Cemetery.

"Remember me in the family tree
My name, my days, my strife;

Then I'll ride upon the wings of time
And live an endless life."

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Family stories:Charles Rillstone
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on Feb 18 2011 02:36

A Cornish Mans Life Story: Late Mr Charles Rillstone

A resident of Venus Street, Georgetown, whose long and varied career included work at such widely separated places as the Longwood Ranges in Southland, the Comstock Ranges in America, and before that, mining, overland coaching in Australia, with finally a short spell on the excavations at the Monowai Electric Works, passed away on Wednesday. This was Mr Charles Rillstone, aged 73

Mr Rillstone, who had been a member of the Masonic Order for many years, was a native of Perrin, Cornwall, and came to New Zealand at an early age. He came from Australia in the sixties to Invercargill where his brother the late Mr James Rillstone, was engaged with Messer’s W Kingswell and Co Butchers, Dee Street.

The first job Mr Rillstone got in Invercargill was at the Black Eagle Brewery that of pumping water into the tank on the tower, from which the arrival of mail steamers used to be signalled. He lived in a tent in the bush about where Spey Street is now.

Returning to Australia, where he married, Mr Rillstone engaged in various occupations, but chiefly mining. He was at Ballarat, and worked in the Phoenix Foundry, which turned out the first locomotive made in Australia.

While in Queensland he drove a mail coach between Rockhampton and Marybrough, and was within a few miles of the down coach when it was bailed up by the Hunter Brothers, bushrangers. Another time he was in Queensland Township, when he saw a man riding past, leading a horse with a rifle slung over his shoulder. This he learnt later, was “Starlight”, a bushranger regarding whom many romantic stories have been told.

Mr Rillstone had some interesting memories of the famous Burke and Wills expedition. Before coming to g New Zealand he saw the explorers leaving on their ill-fated journey August 1860, and on his own cattle-droving trips to Queensland he was in the neighbourhood of some of their camps.

From Australia Mr Rillstone went off to America, and worked for a time in the celebrated Comstock Lodes In Nevada, some thousands of feet below, that men could only work for short spells. Barrels of ice were sent down at intervals to cool their bodies and for drinking purposes. They worked in dungaree pants, with shoes and a sweat rag. In one part of the mine it was so hot that the water would cook an egg in five minutes.

While in Virginia City, near the famous gold and silver mines, Me Rillstone witnessed the great fire which destroyed half the city, and his family have relics of the conflagration- a tack hammer and a brace.

Life in Nevada in those days was exciting. It was common for men to be shot or stabbed in gambling saloons, and while Mr Rillstone was there the Indians massacred a number of miners. W Cody (Buffalo Bill) headed an expedition against them, fought their chief single-handed, and killed him. Mr Rillstone afterwards saw the chiefs scalp in a tobacconists shop in Virginia City.

Mr Rillstone afterwards settled at Riverton, and took a leading part in the development of the Longwood quartz reefs, to which he pinned his faith to the last. His wife died in Dunedin in 1906 and four or five years ago he came to live in Invercargill, in which his sons, five in number have resided for a number of years.

When the rush to Zeehan, Tasmania, took place Mr Rillstone took charge of a prospecting party despatched by a syndicate, the vessel in which he sailed, when near her destination, narrowly escaped disaster, and had to run to sea again. A great storm raged, but eventually the desired haven was reached.

A few years later Mr Rillstone returned to New Zealand, and went into a venture at Rough Ridges, Central Otago, and took the managership of the O.P.Q. Co (originally the Otago Pioneer Quartz Co.) Later he engaged in dredging contracts in the Lakes District, and he constructed the weir at Waipori in connection with Dunedin’s electricity scheme. He was at the Neuthorn rush in Central Otago, and had a mate killed beside him in a shaft.

Mr Rillstone wrote a number of articles for this paper, dealing for the most part with the Longwood Quartz reefs.

Ref: Southern Cross Newspaper


  • Otago Pioneer Quartz Co. is the 1863 site of the first underground quartz mine in New Zealand.Early in the history of Comstock mining, there were heavy flows of water to contend with. This called for pumping machinery and apparatus, and as greater depth was attained, larger pumps were demanded. All the inventive genius of the Pacific Coast was called into play, and this resulted in construction of some of the most powerful and effective steam and hydraulic pumping equipment to be found anywhere in the world. Initially, the water was cold, but the deeper workings cut into parts of the vein where there were heavy flows of hot water. This water was hot enough to cook an egg or scald a man to death almost instantly. Lives were lost by falling into sumps of this water hot from the vein. The hot water called for fans, blowers and various kinds of ventilation apparatus, as miners working in heated drifts had to have a supply of cool air.


The following applications for letters patent, with provisional specifications, have been accepted by the Patent Office:—; Charles Rillstone, of South Dunedin, miner, improvements in elevators for the lifting and carriage and discharge of tailings or other material from bucket dredges; fastenings:

  • COLONIAL INVENTIONS: Evening Post, Volume LXII, 10 August 1901, Page 5


" The Milling Act Amendment Act, 1886," have been granted certificates as mine managers by the Board of Examiners: — First-class Charles Rillstone and William Patton, Otago

Otago Witness, Issue 2338, 22 December 1898, Page 24


Complete specifications relating to the under mentioned application for letters patent have been accepted at the Patents Office. Wellington, as follows: Charles Rillstone, South Dunedin, improvements in elevators for the lifting and carriage and discharge material from bucket dredges.

Otago Witness, Issue 2475, 21 August 1901, Page 12


Henry Hughes, patent and trade marks agents (authorized by New Zealand Government) reports the following list of patent applications in New Zealand as compiled from Government Gazette- of July 28: — Auckland: A. Godfrey, trolley pole: C Rillstone, pump.

Hawera & Normanby Star, Volume LVII, 10 August 1910, Page 3

Patent and trade mark agent, Manse-street, Dunedin (authorized by the New Zealand Government), supplies the fallowing list of New Zealand applications for patents, compiled from the New Zealand " Gazette July 24th ” Rillstone:-Spark preventer

Nelson Evening Mail, Volume XXXVI, Issue 194, 19 August 1902, Page 4

  • The following item is taken from the Alexandra Herald:

"There is talk of the Nenthorn goldfields being revived, after being desolate for quite 20 - years.

"Two Rillstone brothers have pegged out the Victoria, the Crocus, and the Blue Slate claims.

"Mr C. Rillstone, father of the two prospectors, and manager of the antimony mine at Alexandra, with his mate (Mr Moyle), sunk the largest shaft that ever was put down in Nenthorn many years ago. ”Permission to work the field is now being awaited.


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Genealogy:Hollow/Rillstone research
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on Feb 9 2011 02:47

Mary Louisa was the daughter of Edward Rillston and Mary Spargo of Fowey, Cornwall. Edward was a fairly wealthy man, giving each of his children a business in Fowey. Mary Louisa was given a boot and shoe shop which she ran as a widow with daughters Minnie and Edna. Upon Mary Louisa's death, Minnie married James Richard Floyd and immigrated to the USA. Edna married George Kingsley Rowe and stayed in Cornwall. Wallace (Mary and William's son) also married and stayed in Cornwall. He was quite the actor, but a banker by profession.

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Family memories:Harry (Henry) Rillstone
Posted by: Margaret (Maggie) Rillstone on Feb 9 2011 01:47

Harry (Henry) Rillstone was well known for his ability as a lightning sketch artist and as a hypnotist. Papers Past is just starting to show some of the advertisements for his shows in Wellington.

Harry did a head and shoulders painting of Miss Mary Wotten who was the first Miss New Zealand. I have the article somewhere will add in the reference when I find it again.

The book The New Zealand Book of Records, pg 68 has a photo of Harry after inserting needles through his arms and face. The article is headed:

“Most Remarkable Yogi”

“Before his retirement at the age of 57, Mr Rillstone was probably New Zealands best known practitioner of the art of yoga. Mr Henry Edward Rillstone demonstrated yoga techniques on national television, and as a stage performer. One of his most spectacular achievements was to allow long needles to be inserted through his arms without feeling pain, and also preventing the copious bleeding that could be expected to accompany such and act. Mr Rillstone also used to demonstrate lying between two chairs with only his head and ankles supported.

(Collectors Edition, 1994, Katherine Joyce and Jonathan Eisen. Auckland Institute of Technology Press)

There was a documentary done about Harry which showed on the “Tonight at Nine” television programme. TVNZ managed to save about 5 minutes worth of film which I have on disc.

Harry was also well known for his skills in horticulture. For many years he worked for the Marton Council and was in charge of the Marton Parks and reserves. He did extensive development to the gardens at The Marton Parks. In the main park there is a set of red and white mushroom tables made of concrete that he made. He instigated “Flower Sunday” at the park which attracted large crowds. Included in the show were large displays of floral carpets made by local community groups and individuals.

In his early years with the council part of his responsibilities was to dig the graves at Mount View Cemetery. As a child I heard a conversation between a two couples who said they were visiting the cemetery one sunny day and notice a newly dug and as yet unoccupied grave. Out of curiosity they went over to have a look. To there surprise they discovered Harry sleeping on the job in his underwear stretched out in the bottom of the grave. His response “It was cool and peaceful and he was hot and tired”.

Harry recycled everything. A trip to the dump in his Chrysler truck usually resulted in two three trips to bring back all the things he found that “would be useful one day”.

By profession was an upholsterer who I believe had his own business in his yearly years and later worked at the Ford Motor Company in Wellington.

He was a very creative man who if he didn’t have something he needed he would make it. If OSH had been around in the 60’s-70’s they would have had all his tools confiscated. Like his siblings he was very competitive and was I believe involved in wrestling and swimming in his younger years. Nigel Latter wasn’t around in those days, to help his parents Heneritta and Charles Edward Rillstone cope with a very competitive young family.

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