Barbadoes Street Cemetery has many mature trees, but few flowers these days. An exception is the splendid rose bush that covers the grave of Frederick Thompson.
Luckily there’s an inscription on the edge of the grave to identify him. He died on 9th April 1881, aged 76.
Frederick Thompson was the mathematics and commerce teacher at Christ’s College who became the first ‘honorary and unpaid’ librarian of the Mechanics Institute. Richard Greenaway’s history of the cemetery mentions Frederick and Mary Ann Thompson who were “of good family but without financial resources”. Their daughter Helen, aged 18, married John Bealey in 1856. Another daughter, Emily Rose, married Henry Jacobs, first Dean of Christchurch, in 1871.
“Our first librarian reposes
beneath a splendid bush of roses.”