New Zealand Land Wars

... Listen to our words, the words of all the chiefs of Waikato … News is going about here that your Ministers are talking of taking away our lands without cause. This makes our hearts dark. But we do not believe this news, because we heard from the first Governor that the disposal of the land is with ourselves. And from the second Governor we heard the same word, and from this Governor. They have all said the same.

Te Wherowhero, Ngati Mahuta, Waikato, and others to the Queen, 1847. The 150 Year Debate A Selection of Quotations on the Treaty of Waitangi, 1990.

Robley, Horatio Gordon, 1840-1930. Robley, Horatio Gordon, 1840-1930 :Sketch in trenches, Gate Pa. 30 April 1864.. Ref: A-033-036. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22302109
Robley, Horatio Gordon, 1840-1930. Robley, Horatio Gordon, 1840-1930 :Sketch in trenches, Gate Pa. 30 April 1864.. Ref: A-033-036. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22302109

Within ten years of the signing of the Treaty, Māori had begun to appeal to the Government with claims about dubious land sales, but with no success. The Crown kept to the Treaty at first, partly because the new settlers needed the help of the Māori people for food and other necessities of life, and partly because the Māori outnumbered them.

As settler demand for land grew, and it became more obvious that the British expected Māori to be subject to British law and authority, tension erupted into what is now known as the ‘New Zealand Wars’. The conflict took place mainly in Taranaki, Waikato, Hawke’s Bay, and Auckland. They were generally fought between 1843 and 1870s with one result being that the government confiscated large areas of land from the Māori people.

Te Wharerangi Parekawa, fl 1845?-1914. Maori survivors of war. Cowan, James, 1870-1943 :Collection of photographs. Ref: 1/1-017975-G. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22299953
Te Wharerangi Parekawa, fl 1845?-1914. Maori survivors of war. Cowan, James, 1870-1943 :Collection of photographs. Ref: 1/1-017975-G. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22299953

Recommended resources

Next pages: Parihaka and The Waitangi Tribunal

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