First OGHS principal

Princes St, Dunedin, looking north from Manse St corner. — Otago Witness, 11.12.1918.
Princes St, Dunedin, looking north from Manse St corner. — Otago Witness, 11.12.1918.
At the very mature age of nearly 94 years the death took place on Sunday at her daughter’s residence of Mrs Margaret Gordon H. Burn, one-time principal of the Otago Girls’ High School. Deceased was born in Edinburgh, the eldest daughter of Mr Alexander Huie.

Most of her earlier education was acquired at Circus Place School, and later she studied languages under private tutors. As a young woman she commenced teaching as a governess in the family of Sir William Jackson, at Liverpool. After the death of her father she emigrated with her mother and the other members of their large family to Australia in 1852, when the gold fever was abroad. Settling at Geelong, a small private school was opened, and successfully maintained by Miss Huie till her marriage in 1857 with Mr Andrew Burn. In 1864 the state of Mr Burn’s health necessitated a voyage to the Old Country, and Mrs Burn began a school on the lines of the old Circus Place School in Edinburgh, a high school for girls, which was successfully carried on till 1870, when , hearing of the proposed establishment of a girls’ high school in Otago, she applied for and obtained the position of principal at the opening of the school in 1871. A great many people had been doubtful of the success of the new school, but under the capable management of Mrs Burn the school flourished, as also did the large boarding establishment, also under her direction. After many years of unremitting labour she was compelled by failing health in 1884 to resign her position. Such an energetic worker could not long remain idle, and after a short period of retirement she accepted the position of principal of the Waitaki Girls’ High School, which had just been opened at Oamaru. After conducting this school with marked success for about five years, she finally resigned, and resided with different members of her family. She leaves a family, Mrs Allan (wife of Mr R. S. Allan, O. K.); Mr D. W. M. Burn, M. A., head master at Glenoamaru; and Mr Edgar Burn, head master at Romahapa.

Influenza workers thanked

Speaking at a meeting of Wellington North workers in the influenza epidemic, the Hon. G. W. Russell thanked those who had worked so hard. The Health Department was not perfect, but the experience gained would enable it to produce a body of trained fighters to combat any future epidemic.

Mr Russell said the departmental officers told him that disease came in waves; first a big one, then smaller ones, lessening each time. He believed that New Zealand had now finished with the big wave, thanks to the noble work of the men and women, especially the women, who had nursed the sick and helpless back to health.

Defaulters at  Elfin Bay

The party of military defaulters who were recently arrested at Elfin Bay (Lake Wakatipu) took up the role of surveyors in search of water power whereby electricity could be generated on a large scale. It is most amusing to read of the advice given to them by the citizens of the towns they temporarily visited regarding the locality of waterfalls and the probability of the success of their venture. One of the defaulters carried an imposing-looking roll of parchment under his arm and talked learnedly on surveying; but as the record reads, the parchment was blank, and came in handy to keep out a draught from a broken window in the huts visited. — ODT, 10.12.1918.



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