Thomas Dalton was born in Keek, Yorkshire. He spent four years in Canada when he was a young man. He married Charlotte Allman, also born in Yorkshire England and they came to New Zealand on the Lancashire Witch in 1863. They first settled in Kaiapoi and Rangiora and lived there for many years and experienced a great many difficulties as did many pioneers. In 1876 after suffering some great losses in the Waimakariri flood they moved to Wakanui and bought land in its native form (covered in tussock) which they worked successfully. In old age they moved to Ashburton. Charlotte nursed many people through illness. Thomas was seen as having a “quiet unassuming, sterling and thoroughly practical life” which “gained for him the highest esteem of all with whom he came in contact." They left six sons and four daughters and 24 grandchildren.
Thomas Henry Dalton and his wife Emma Magdalena nee Meng