Otaki by-election, 1900

Otaki by-election of 1900
New Zealand
6 January 1900

Turnout 62.35%
Candidate William Hughes Field Charles Morison
Party Liberal Conservative
Popular vote 1,755 1,592
Percentage 52.44 47.56

Member before election

Henry Augustus Field

Elected Member

William Hughes Field

The Otaki by-election of 1900 was a by-election during the 14th New Zealand Parliament. The election was held on 6 January following the death of Henry Augustus Field, and was won by his brother William Hughes Field.


The Otaki electorate became vacant following the death on 8 December of Henry Augustus Field, two days after the 1899 election.[1] Before candidates had announced themselves, it was reported that Kennedy Macdonald was considering standing for the Liberal Party.[2] The barrister Edwin George Jellicoe was also mentioned as a possible candidate.[2][3] It was reported that it was likely that the brother of the deceased, William Hughes Field, would be asked to stand for the Liberal Party.[2] The president of the Eighty Club, T. Dwan, was mentioned as a possible candidate for the opposition.[2] The barrister Charles Morison, who had contested the 1899 general election, was a likely candidate again.[4][5] William Field consented just after his brother's funeral, and the Liberal Party confirmed that had Field not been their candidate, they would have stood W. Ross of Upper Hutt as their candidate.[4]

The deadline for nomination of candidates was 30 December 1899.[6] In the end, only two candidates were nominated: William Field for the Liberal Party, and Charles Morison in the interests of the opposition.[5][7]

The by-election was held on 6 January and was won by Field's brother William,[8] who during the campaign showed that he was inexperienced in politics.[9]


The following table gives the election results:

Otaki by-election, 1900[10]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal William Hughes Field 1,755 52.44
Conservative Charles Morison 1,592 47.56 +2.09
Majority 163 4.87 -4.18
Turnout 3,347 62.35 -0.45
Registered electors 5,368


  1. Wilson 1985, p. 195.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "Second Edition". The Evening Post. LVIII (140). 11 December 1899. p. 6. Retrieved 6 February 2015.
  3. Cyclopedia Company Limited (1897). "Barristers And Solicitors". The Cyclopedia of New Zealand : Wellington Provincial District. Wellington: The Cyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
  4. 1 2 "Second Edition". The Evening Post. LVIII (142). 13 December 1899. p. 6. Retrieved 6 February 2015.
  5. 1 2 "Mr. C.B. Morison, K.C.". The Evening Post. XCIX (6). 7 January 1920. p. 6. Retrieved 3 February 2015.
  6. "Notice of Polling Day". The Evening Post. LVIII (153). 28 December 1899. p. 6. Retrieved 5 February 2015.
  7. "The Otaki Election". The Evening Post. LIX (1). 2 January 1900. p. 5. Retrieved 5 February 2015.
  8. Wilson 1985, p. 196.
  9. "Evening Post". The Evening Post. LVIII (149). 21 December 1899. p. 4. Retrieved 3 February 2015.
  10. "The Otaki Seat". The New Zealand Herald. XXXVII (11265). 8 January 1900. p. 5. Retrieved 5 February 2015.


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