Death on a tramcar

Another death report, this time from a New Zealand newspaper, many of which have been digitised. This looks like the oldest son of Walter Cavers and Jane Blair who were discussed, including in the comments, in the previous post. There’s a Scottish birth for this John in Stobhill district, Midlothian, in 1875, registered as “John Cavers Irvine”. And there’s a matching New Zealand death certificate for him.

Wanganui Chronicle, 1917 January 31


A man naimed[sic] John Cavers, who resided at 116 Bell Street, boarded a tramcar at King’s Avenue, Gonville, yesterday about 5 o’clock, and was observed to collapse before the car had gone twenty chains. Dr Wilkin was hastily summoned, but could do not[sic] more than pronounce life extinct.

Deceased, who was 42 years of age, had been, until the 20th inst., employed as fireman on the N.Z. Refrigerating Company’s lighter Dorset, but had recently been working on day wages.

A second report, this time in the Evening Post of 1917 January 31, notes that he was a “married man”, and that the death occurred on 30th January.

Was he John Cavers who married Sarah A. Samways at Canterbury, NSW in 1910, with several children born over the next few years?


5 thoughts on “Death on a tramcar

  1. Hi,
    No this John Cavers death in New Zealand is not either of the 2 that you have listed here…
    The John who was the 1st born son to Walter and Jane in Stobhill in 1875 also died the same year .
    The John who married Sarah Samways was Walter and Jane’s last born child who was born in Sydney in 1889. He died in 1961 in Camden and can be seen on NSW BDM listed as father unkown. I have his death certificate and can confirm this is definitely the 1889 born son.


      • I’m just ordering a copy of the death certificate now, so will post what I find out. There’s another relatively early Cavers death in New Zealand that I’m ordering at same time.

  2. Pingback: More about John Cavers who died on the tramcar in New Zealand | Cavers One-Name Study Blog

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