The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Wellington Provincial District]
Mr. Thomas John William Gale
Mr. Thomas John William Gale, J.P., Chairman of the Wellington Harbour Board, is well known in the mercantile life of Port Nicholson. He was born in Adelaide, S.A., in 1853, and educated at St. Peter's Church of England School, Melbourne, entering commercial life in Victoria at an early age, in the establishment of Messrs. Spence Bros., general merchants. When his employers opened up business on the West Coast, at the time of the mining boom, Mr. Gale crossed the Tasman Sea, and for twelve years was closely associated with business matters in Hokitika. He continued with this firm till they retired from the business, when he entered the service of Messrs. James Chesney and Co., of the same place. In 1877 Mr. Gale came to Wellington, and at once occupied a responsible position in the old-established business of Messrs. Johnston and Co., general merchants. For nearly twenty years be has been intimately connected with this large firm, till in 1885 he was entrusted with the general management of the business, which position he still holds. Mr. Gale is a shrewd, far-seeing man of business, and it is not surprising that his services are sought after in connection with many local institutions. He is a director of the Wellington Opera House Company, a member of “the executive of the Fire Underwriters' Association, and chairman of the Wellington Merchants' Association. For many years he has taken a leading part in connection with the Wellington Chamber of Commerce. In February, 1895, he was elected to the responsible position of president of that corporation, which post he filled with general satisfaction. In social matters Mr. Gale is popular and enthusiastic. As a bowler he has been prominent in the establishment of the Wellington Bowling Club, of which he was president and now is a director, and to which reference is made under “Sports, Games, and Pastimes.” Mr. Gale has shown great zeal in the movements for the relief of the unemployed, and is chairman of the Works Committee of the unemployed relief fund, both for the Queen's Drive and the Recreation Ground, and was one of the originators of both of these excellent works. In 1876 Mr. Gale was married in Wellington to the second daughter of Mr. J. G. Chapman, and has three children—two sons and one daughter.