Hone Tikao was the son of the chief Tauporiotu and Hakeke and lived around 1808 to 1852. He was a descendant of Manaia and Irakehu (grand-daughter of Te Rakiwhakaputa of Rapaki).
He was seized along with his brother Tamati and others during the capture in 1830 of Tamaiharanui and his wife and child on the brig Elizabeth. Taken to Kapiti Island by Te Rauparaha, he was later released and joined a whaling ship.
He spent many years at sea and travelled to France. It was at this time that he took the name John/Jack Love given him by the whalers. He had a good command of both English and French languages from his years sailing the world on a whaling ship.
More importantly, Hone Tikao was a signatory to the Treaty of Waitangi signing at Ōnuku on 28 May 1840. This was during the period (following the historic signings at Waitangi) when the treaty was taken around New Zealand and signed by tribal chiefs from around the country.
During the period from 1844 through to 1864, the bulk of the lands of the South Island were sold by Ngāi Tahu to the Crown. On the 12th June 1848 Hone Tikao was a signatory to the Kemp Deed for sale of the Canterbury block. He was not happy with the terms of the sale that related to the Akaroa portion and argued with Walter Mantell the government agent over the sale process. To this day many from Horomaka (Banks Peninsula) do not believe that they sold their land, and were unhappy with the action on 12 June 1848 of Kemp and others during this time.
His nephew Hone (Teone) Taare Tikao was a well known scholar and leader who lived at Rapaki in his later life. With his command of English he was a sought after informant of chroniclers such as James Cowan, J. W. Stack and Herries Beattie. His views on traditions and stories about Ngāi Tahu were recorded in the book Tikao Talks by Beattie, which still gives us a useful insight into how people lived in his time.
- Harry Evison, Te Wai Pounamu The Greenstone Island A History of the Southern Māori during the European Colonization of New Zealand. Aoraki Press, Christchurch, 1993
- Gordon Ogilvie, Banks Peninsula – Cradle of Canterbury, Government Printer 1990
- Tipene O’Regan, Tikao Hone Taare 1850? – 1927. Dictionary of New Zealand Biography
- Told by Teone Taare Tikao to Herries Beattie. Tikao Talks. Cadsonbury Publications Christchurch, 2004
- Ngai-Tahu: notes relating to, by Rahera Tainui, The Journal of the Polynesian Society, Vol. 55, no. 3, 1946