Henare Tarawhiti - Te Tarawhiti
This is a story about Te Tarawhiti also known as "Tarawhiti"or "Henare Tarawhiti". The story of this koroua has been collated from many different research aspects such as the records from the Maori land court minute books, newspaper articles, manuscripts written material from local libraries, whanau diaries, and whakapapa books.
The only records of Henare's birth is held in the Family History Centre, Temple View, Hamilton Office. This record still requires verification however, it is consistent with other information and research that I have studied.
Son of Kereru Tarawhiti II and Hariata, some records point towards him being born in 1826 at Otakeho, Taranaki whilst others point towards it being earlier at Taupiri, Waikato.
Kereru II is the founder of the Tarawhiti surname, including all Tarawhiti whanau from Waikato, Taranaki and other parts of Aotearoa.
Kereru II and Hariata had two sons, the first named Kereru II in 1824 and the second, Henare. Kereru III was baptized by Rev Robert Burrows and christened Seth which translates to 'Heta' in Maori. Heta was given his fathers first name and Henare was given his second name.
The Tarawhiti whanau resided close to the Kaniwhaniwha stream in a place called Purakau. In 1822, they were living at Pokowhatitiri Pa, the only Pa recorded to belong to Ngati Whawhakia. This Pa stood in Matakitaki, in accordance to evidence given by Karaka Tarawhiti during the land court case concerning the Moerangi Block. Karaka stipulated that Kereru II was present and fought alongside Te Wherowhero at the battle of Matakitaki when Ngapuhi came to rout Waikato.
In 1830, Kereru II passes away at Whakataki leaving Hariata and their two sons, Heta and Henare. She moves her family to Waahi Paa and eventually settles in Kaitotehe, Taupiri.
One year later, in 1831, Potatau Te Wherowhero and a large war party heads back to Taranaki where they are defeated. It is here when Te Wherowhero settles for peace. This decision and vow for peace later plays a huge impact on Henare's life and that of his descendants.
A consensus was conducted in 1844 of the different hapu of Waikato, including Te Ngaungau also known as Ngati Whawhakia. The consensus was of adults and children, on the Te Ngaugnau list was 'Tarawhiti' (Henare). Also on this list was Heta, Ngaraihi also known as Ruahau (Mother), Kaaro (sister), Paora (his brother in law) and his many whanaunga. Te Paki, Hori Te Paki were also inscribed on this list.
In August, 1864, King Matutaera and his delegation from Waikato and Maniapoto arrive in Ahipaipa in South Taranaki. The purpose of this visit was to fulfil the promises made by his father Potatau Te Wherowhero back in 1831. Many tongi and taonga were exhanged during this time.
King Matutaera in September, 1867, chose and sent 12 whanau to Taranaki as part of his promise made to the prophets of Parihaka. These whanau become known as Te Kaumarua. Tarawhiti was sent as one of the Te Kaumarua, a defining moment in the Tarawhiti whanau history. These whanau were sent under a raahui, never to return back to their lands in Waikato and Maniapoto.
10 April, 1879 - Tarawhiti stood before Captain Wray RM in court regarding a breach of contract between Tarawhiti and Mr Samuel Taplin. Mr Taplin had purchased a a quota of grass seeds from Henare but did not receive the agreement amount. Because of the fall in the market, Tarawhiti refused to take any more seeds to Mr Taplin.
28 October, 1881 - Tarawhiti appeared in a newspaper as one of many ploughman that had knocked down the fences. He appeared in court for his actions on the land in Otakeho that belonged to Mr Hunter but was sold and brought by Mr Milne. An official complaint against Tarawhiti was submitted before Captain Gudgeon JP and the leader of the Armed Constabulary Force from Otakeho and Manaia.
The local European community partitioned to the Native Minister to begin an Armed Constabulary Force against the ploughman for their anti and illegal behaviour. Their partition was declined.
Tarawhiti had 30 whare belonging to him at Otakeho.
A few days later, 31 October 1881, a warrant for his arrest was issued for his actions. Becuase of the unrest in Parihaka, both the police and military forces had their hands full concentrating their efforts on the Parihaka front. They stated the would get to Tarawhiti in their 'own leisure'.
On the 4th February, 1882 at Hokorima Pa, a letter was sent to Sir William Fox by William Katene and Rangiwhetu. The letter was in relation to a meeting held the previous day discussing the survey of reserves made for Maori living on the Waimate Plains. Referring to the visit to Oeo Pa by Sir William Fox and Sir William Bell and the question of one thousand acres being awarded to those who were not at Parihaka during the conflict. The names of those were:
- Te Tarawhiti
The 1000 acres was the land at Weriweri and Hokarima, this is the site that Aotea Marae is located on.
On the 17th April 1882, Tarawhiti appeared in front of Captain Wilson JP charged with an offence against the West Coast Settlements Act. No evidence was placed before the court and the Judge dismissed the charge. Mr Milne, the complainant was satisfied with the conduct of Tarawhiti and withdrew the complaint.
Te Tarawhiti was one of the many other tupuna who owned a particular block of land. On the 3rd April, 1894, the collective agreed to lease the block to Charles Davies for 99 years or the perpetual lease scheme.
In 1902, Tarawhiti appeared in court and was convicted for the illegal act of being at a train station in New Plymouth. Mr Day, the Station Master, gave evidence that if Tarawhiti left town within 24hrs, he would not be punished. Tarawhiti said he was leaving to go home to Otakeho and left immediately. Tarawhiti had a reputation of a radical and made the authorities nervous, he was seen as a Hauhau.
November 3rd, 1902
Henare Tarawhiti passed away at his home on Taikatu Road, Otakeho
The obituary was submitted to the newspaper by Mr H. Keepa from Wairarapa.
On 1 March 1913, an application for succession by Brandy Whakaneke for Sec 99 Blk Waimate was filed through the Maori Land Court. The succession was on behalf of Te Tarawhiti and his children as his successors.
At a court hearing in Manaia, on 22nd February, 1915, some 14 years after Tarawhiti's death, evidence was given in relation to Ngati Haua land. The evidence was given by Pare Rama, wife of Te Rama from Ngati Maru, and it was to the visit of Mr Rennell and Mr Wilson, Government Land Office representatives. The purpose of their visit was to find local Maori owners to help construct a list of names for land. The land was within Ngati Haua territory and they asked Te Rama to assist them in their endeavours. Te Rama refused so they approached Tarawhiti instead. Tarawhiti agreed only because those didn't would not recieve land in the future. He dictated names of those entitled to Ngati Haua land. Mr Rennell specifically told Tarawhiti "Write your names down for some land, if you don't, you will be begging later for land".
This was the oral evidence given by Nuku Tarawhiti written in the Taranaki MB 22, folio 4, before Judge Gilbert Mair. The succession hearing of Tarawhiti was completed and his personal shares in the Ngati Haua block were derived to all his children. Those shares are still within the whanau today.
Karipa Tarawhiti in 1958 stood before Judge O Malley giving evidence on both of his parents, specifically his fathers whakapapa and where he originated:
"Tarawhiti (the 2nd husband of Ngawai) came from Waikato.He was included in the Crown Grant for Omuturangi, Ngati Haua and Taikatu but out of his wife's share. Tarawhiti came from Ngaruawahia district".
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Page last updated 20 Nov 2008