William R. Marsters

Palmerston Island, Cook Islands

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These are a selection of photos that have been compiled from personal family collections or from books that I have obtained permission by the author to publish.

William II - my great-grandfather
William Marsters II (my great grandfather who with his wife Marama, raised my mother after Here Jane died at the age of 29). The baby in the first photograph is Auntie Ritia, so this photo must have been taken in about 1927. The others may have been taken later, firstly with visiting sailors and secondly with his sons Ned and James (his youngest son who became a seaman).

William and Marama with the family on Palmerston
These are photos of William and Marama with the family on Palmerston. These photos are particularly special to me because because they include my grandmother, Here Jane. She is directly behind William in the left hand photo, and holding Uncle Louis in the right hand photo (back row).  She died on Palmerston 12 days after my mother was born on 12 January 1927.  My mother Tere Jane was brought up by her great-grandparents on Palmerston. 

Rescuing the Solace off the reef
These photos really demonstrate the ingenuity of the men of Palmerston as they rescued the Solace in which Commander Victor Clark had unintentionally rammed against the reef. Without the aid of any machinery, the guys got the yacht off the reef, and onto the islands. They later repaired the hole so that Commander Clark could continue his journey to New Zealand. His story is "On the Wind of a Dream" in "Stories of Palmerston".

Uncle Ned - a Family Leader on Palmerston

Uncle Ned, son of William II, was a respected family leader on Palmerston during his time. He is pictured here with Commander Clark with whom he supervised the repair of the Solace. And he is later shown with the captain on the Brittania, the Queen's Ship, which called into Palmerston, giving the people of Palmerston an opportunity to visit the ship during its visits to the only English speaking island of the Cook Islands, named after a British Prime Minister, and whose founder was an Englishman with an exciting history in the Pacific. 

Old Palmerston Island buildings
These depict the houses as they were in the old days. The church was the original that William I built but which was destroyed during a hurricane and has since been replaced. The Old House was built by Tearaia Marsters and has also deterioriated over time. The third building remains as solid as it was when it was built. However, its construction was carefully designed to withstand the ravages of even the strongest forces of wind and sea. It was built out of heavy materials from ships that were wrecked on the reef over the long history of the island. 
The new church on Palmerston
The church on Palmerston that replaced the one that was wrecked by a hurricane.  The building was funding by family members from all over the world who contributed to re-establishing an important feature of family life on the island. It was also built by family members as well. 

Headstones on Palmerston
The headstones of William Marsters and Akakaingaro in the church cemetery, and of Matavia which lies in the Matavia Family cemetery.
Created on Monday, 21 October 2013 21:57 Published on Monday, 21 October 2013 21:57