Here are some updates for my book on the Chrysolite. Every time I publish a book new information always comes out of the woodwork. One day a man banged on my door saying his ancestor was on the Chrysolite and I hadn't included a biography for him in the book. Ian, this is for you. Your ancestor is now in my updates:
John McIlroy was the son of William McIlroy and was born on 25 May 1816 in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. He married twice, first to Jean Through, (they had four children) and then once Jean died in about 1850, he married Georgnia Christie. They married on 5 Sept 1853 and had five children, one of whom was born in New Zealand.
John had a market garden at Burntisland, Scotland but other occupations included gardener, labourer and engine worker.
In 1862 John, Georgina and eight children came to New Zealand on the Chrysolite. On the shipping list they were listed as John (44), Georgina (37), John (23), Jane (20), Robert (17), William (13), Joseph (8), Elizabeth (6), Georgina (2), James (2).
John purchased a farm in Rolleston and had a prize stallion, grew mangles (similar to turnips) and other crops. They had their own traction engine and some of his sons did farm contract work.
John died at Springston on 6 January 1892 aged 77 years and was buried in the Springston Cemetery. Georgina died at Ashburton on 4 February 1901 aged 72 years. (courtesy of Ian McIlroy)