Spragg family

Influential, generous but also lampooned

The Spraggs were a prominent Auckland family, led by patriarch Wesley Spragg (1848-1930).

Wesley was well-known as a butter manufacturer, and first president of the New Zealand Dairy Association. He was also an outspoken temperance campaigner, leading protests and marches against the sale of alcohol. So although he was a prominent benefactor, he was often lampooned in newspaper cartoons for his stance on drinking.

This family plot contains memorials to Henrietta, Wesley, Mary, and Charles Spragg, and Annie Dearnley Spragg.

The family donated land at Kaitarakihi Park near Cornwallis on the Manukau Harbour as a memorial to Wesley Neal Spragg and “All the boys’, who died in the First World War. Wesley Neal Spragg was killed in a flying accident in January 1918, and is buried in the Old Cairo Cemetery in Egypt.

  • <p>Mr Wesley Spragg, c1910. <em>Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 31-72211.</em></p>
  • <p>Laying a New Zealand hero to rest in Cairo: Funeral of the late Lietenant W. Neal Spragg R.F.C., who was killed in action, 21 March 1918. <em>Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, AWNS-19180321-36-5.</em></p>
  • <p>Wesley Neal Spragg wa killed in a plane crash at the end of World War One, aged 23, and is buried in the Old Cairo Cemetery in Egypt. <em>Huia Settlers Museum, Ref: HM18. http://www.nzmuseums.co.nz/account/3012/object/368/Wesley_Neal_Spragg#prettyPhoto</em></p>

Aerial photo location

Where is the family plot?

Just north of the Grafton Bridge, and above Bishop Selwyn's path. Site 12 in the the Bishop Selwyn's Path Trail Guide.