John Robert Godley

John Robert Godley

Founder of Canterbury + New Zealand
Born May 29, 1814

John Robert Godley was an Irish statesman and bureaucrat. Godley is considered to be the founder of Canterbury, New Zealand, although he lived there for only two years.

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of John Robert Godley.


1814 Birth Born in 1814.


1836 22 Years Old Godley was born in Dublin, the eldest son of John Godley and Katherine Daly. His father was an Anglo-Irish landlord with country estates in County Leitrim and County Meath in Ireland. He was educated at Harrow School and Christ Church, Oxford, graduating in classics in 1836. … Read More
1843 29 Years Old After graduating from college, Godley traveled over much of Ireland and North America. His traveling influenced and helped to form his ideas about the establishment and governing of colonies. In 1843 he was appointed High Sheriff of Leitrim and, in the following year, Deputy Lieutenant and a Justice of the Peace.


1846 32 Years Old He married Charlotte Griffith Wynne, daughter of Mr C.G.Wynne of Denbighshire, in September 1846 and in 1847 failed in a bid to represent Leitrim in the UK parliament. … Read More
1850 36 Years Old Four years later he and his family arrived in Port Cooper (Lyttelton) in April 1850. … Read More
1852 38 Years Old He later returned to England in December 1852, where he worked as a columnist and essayist for several newspapers. … Read More


1861 47 Years Old Godley died on 17 November 1861 in London. … Read More
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