Professor A.W. Bickerton Died – 22nd January 1929

On 22 January 1929, controversial Christchurch Professor Alexander William Bickerton died while on a tour in England.

He was the first chemistry teacher at the Canterbury University. The prize student of his career was Ernest Rutherford.

Sacked from the University in 1903 after 29 years for mismanaging his department, it is believed this was a cover up as the University didn’t approve of his outspoken ways. He was a hard critic of marriage – although he was married twice.

Professor Bickerton lived in a fine house and the gardens were open to the public. He called his estate ‘Wainoni’ which is now the name of the suburb. Bickerton Street and Bickerton Reserve are named in his memory.

*image courtesy of Cantage – Canterbury Heritage – *

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