Te Rua Bristowe was born in Te Araroa and was educated at Whakaangiangi Primary School and Te Aute College. He went to Otago University and Massey University and got a law degree. Bristowe worked as a lawyer and studied toward a Diploma of Teaching and spent most of his life teaching at schools in Tokomaru Bay, Gisborne Boys High, St Peter’s, and Te Aute. He worked for the Department of External Affairs and met his wife there. In the 1950s he was a relieving teacher travelling around the country. When he retired from teaching he returned to Tokomaru Bay where he later died.
- Phone conversation with Joe Bristowe on 14 June 1998.
- "Māori Golf Association Championships." Te Ao Hou 51 (1965): 5.
- A brief article announcing the Māori Golf Association Championships at the Tarrangower Golf Club at Taumarunui in August 1965.