In the 1887 electoral redistribution, although the Representation Commission was required through the Representation Act 1887 to maintain existing electorates "as far as possible", rapid population growth in the North Island required the transfer of three seats from the South Island to the north. Ten new electorates were created, including Masterton, and one former electorate was recreated.
The Masterton electorate's boundaries were roughly based on those of the Wairarapa North electorate that it replaced, although it was not an exact match. The electorate ran from the Tararua Ranges down to the sea, with its northern boundary just north of Eketahuna and its southern boundary just south of the largest Wairarapa town of Masterton.
The 1890 election saw the electorate gain Pahiatua and Woodville, but lose territory on the coast south of Castlepoint. At the 1893 elections, it lost Woodville, and in the 1896 election, it lost Pahiatua. In the 1911 election, it lost Castlepoint, leaving it almost landlocked.
|Democratic Labour||Donald Alexander Thompson||581||5.49|
|Independent||Justin McCarthy Power||285||2.69|
|Independent||Arthur Henry Vile||764||9.39|
|Conservative||Charles Edwin Cockburn-Hood||1,400||35.08|
|Liberal||William Wilson McCardle||428||11.37|
- McRobie 1989, pp. 50–53.
- McRobie 1989, pp. 46, 50.
- Scholefield 1950, p. 160.
- "The General Election, 1943". National Library. 1944. p. 11. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- "The General Election, 1938". National Library. 1939. pp. 1–6. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
- The General Election, 1935. Government Printer. 1936. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
- The General Election, 1931. Government Printer. 1932. p. 3. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
- "Notice of nominations received and polling places appointed". Wairarapa Daily Times. 21 November 1931. p. 4. Retrieved 18 February 2020.
- Skinner, W. A. G. (1929). The General Election, 1928. Government Printer. p. 3. Retrieved 18 February 2020.
- "Notice of nominations received and polling places appointed". Wairarapa Daily Times. 30 October 1928. p. 4. Retrieved 18 February 2020.
- "The General Election, 1899". Wellington: Appendix to the Journals of the House of Representatives. 19 June 1900. p. 1. Retrieved 12 February 2014.
- "Masterton Electorate". Wairarapa Daily Times. Vol. XVI, no. 6410. 4 December 1899. p. 3. Retrieved 15 February 2014.
- The General Election, 1893. Government Printer. 1894. p. 1. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
- "The General Election". Otago Daily Times. 28 November 1893. p. 6. Retrieved 28 November 2013.
- "The General Election, 1890". National Library. 1891. Retrieved 25 February 2012.
- McRobie, Alan (1989). Electoral Atlas of New Zealand. Wellington: GP Books. ISBN 0-477-01384-8.
- Scholefield, Guy Hardy (1925) [First published in 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record (2nd ed.). Wellington: Govt. Printer.
- Scholefield, Guy (1950) [First published in 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1949 (3rd ed.). Wellington: Govt. Printer.
- Wilson, James Oakley (1985) [First published in 1913]. New Zealand Parliamentary Record, 1840–1984 (4th ed.). Wellington: V.R. Ward, Govt. Printer. OCLC 154283103.