NameMagdalena Louisa Sophia (Lena) Busch , GG Grandmother
Birth17 Jun 1849, Waimea East [49]
Death3 Mar 1925, Springcreek [49]
FatherHans Heinrich Conrad Busch (1800-1873)
Spouses
1Thomas Nelson Neal , GG Grandfather
Birth29 Nov 1842, Waimea South [47]
Death25 Apr 1924, Marshlands [47]
FatherWilliam Neal (<1810-1868)
MotherAmelia Matthews (1811-1881)
Marriage6 Jul 1866, Waimea East [47]
ChildrenCharles William (1865-1946)
 Amelia Doras (1870-1945)
 Francis (1871-1934)
 Thomas (1874-1948)
 Mary Magdalena (1876-1877)
 Mary (1878-1954)
 Ellen Maud (1880-1944)
 Martha Ann (1882-1930)
 Albert Henry (1884-1933)
 Edward John (1886-1950)
 Laura Evelyn Mabel (1889-1923)
 Monte William James (1891-1950)
 John Frederick (1868-1940)
Notes for Magdalena Louisa Sophia (Lena) Busch
The first mention of Springcreek! I remember how Kate (the wife of their son, John Frederick) would always talk about Springcreek and about the little girl who died there. Not sure who the girl was, but her cause of death varied. If we weren’t cutting up our meat into small pieces, then she choked to death on a large piece of meat. If we were swimming too soon after eating, then the girl died of cramps while swimming, etc. Quite a useful little girl, that, if you ask me.

[49] says:”[She] was born at Waimea East in 1849 and was 8 years old when her parents moved into the Aniseed Valley.
In 1865 She married Thomas Nelson Neal, the first European male child to have been born in the settlement of Nelson. They remained at Waimea East for a few years and then moved to Marshlands in Marlborough where for a short time her husband farmed in partnership with his wife’s brother-in-law, William Kinsett. After this partnership was dissolved he carried on farming on his own account and Wise’s Directory of manyyears ago had the following comment about the Neal farm: ‘Mr. Neal’s farm consists of over 200 acres of good level land, well suited to agriculture purposes, and he also carries on dairying.’
Although she had a large family, Lena was always active in work aroundthe farm and, until her children were old enough to assist, she did her share in the handmilking of the dairy herd.
In later years, when some of her large family had married, there were enough sons-in-law to combine with her sons to form a cricket team which was known as ‘the Neal team’ and on many occasions played in matches against Picton.” [Kate used often to talk about the Neal cricket team. I suppose her husband must have played on it. I never knew what she was talking about until I read this book.]
Notes for Thomas Nelson (Spouse 1)
1842 was the date of the first settlers in Nelson, so Thomas Neal must have been one of the very first babies born there. May explain the choice of name. In fact, the first settler ships arrived in Feb. 1842, and he was born in November. Perhaps not conceived on board, which is hardly surprising, as Amelia’s husband wasn’t on the Lloyds, having come out earlier on the Will Watch, with the original Wakefield party. Soon as she got to shore, though..... As Monique says, lucky he wasn’t born 6 months after landing.

[BC] [47] has a lot of details about Thomas, too many to reproduce here. He first lived in Waimea East which is where he married Selina (the name on her wedding certificate, even though it doesn’t seem to have been her actual name). Charles was born there, but soon after, in 1868, they went off to Marlborough in search of land and work. They first settled at Waikawa, and Thomas worked on a farm near Picton. Then, on 6 August, 1872, Thomas and his brother-in-law, William James Kinsett, bought a property at Spring Creek. Thomas later bought out William on 20 July 1877, for 90 pounds. In 1898 Thomas bought 200 acres of the Marshlands estate.

His granddaughter [Agatha Violet, daughter of Charles William Neal] remembers him as follows [49]:
“ I remember grandfather, Thomas Neal, as a very quiet loving person. He was very deaf. When I was 12, he and Uncle Monte (Thomas’ youngest son) were staying with us for a holiday at St. Omar and grandfather gave me half a crown. I can tell you I thought I was made. I had never owned that much money before. I didn’t have much to do with my grandparents, but grandmother was a very strict woman and always had everyone working....
I remember grandfather bought an overland car when I was 16 (1919). Uncle Monte used to drive it, and he took Mum and I and grandfather for a drive around Spring Creek, and grandfather told me that the land there was selling for ten pounds an acre, which he thought was a very high price.
They first lived in an old house at Marshlands, on their farm there. Uncle Monte and his wife lived in the old house afterwards which has since been burnt. But they built a nice new place with conveniences, hot and cold water and a water lav. on one end of the verandah........
Grandmother was a wonderful worker and tried to make everyone keep up with her. Right up till the time when grandad died whe used to milk a couple of cows. She would leave him to get up and light the fire in the range and get the breakfast ready. the mroning he died, she went out to his bedroom off the verandah to see why he wasn’t up and found he had died in his sleep.
Apparently for a year Thomas farmed Burnlea (Spring Creek property) and Marshlands for one harvest together. Between the two farms was the old Ferry Hotel, and he usually stopped on the way home for a drink. Being harvest time and six o’clock closing, it usualy went after hours. One night the police came in and were busy talking names and Grandad didn’t see them and being deaf didn’t hear them, so when they took him by the shoulder and said ‘What’s yours?’, of course his answer was ‘another long one please’.
Thomas liked to go out and shoot pigeons, but being deaf he would take one of the children to point them out to him as he couldn’t hear them.
Lena was not happy if Thomas didn’t turn up after a visit to the hotel, and she often got into the gig and went to get him. One night as they drove home from the hotel, Thomas was smoking his pipe, and a spark fell into Lena’s lap and set her dress alight.
Lena was described as tough by her grandson, John McDonnell......”

Additional facts:
- a John William Neale (living in Tipahi St.) was listed in the 1870 Nelson electoral roll. Maybe no connection. I don’t know.
- the same John William Neale, and a John Neal, were listed in the 1865/66 Nelson electoral roll. John Neal had a household, John William didn’t appear to.
- No Neals are listed in the 1859 Nelson directory. Maybe they had already all moved to Waimea.
- A John Neal was buried in the Fairfield cemetery in Nelson, on 19 Dec 1865. Might be the same guy as above. There is a shit-load of Neals buring in Nelson cemeteries, as one might expect.
Last Modified 22 Mar 2009Created 11 Sep 2016 using Reunion for Macintosh