I. THE PERIOD 1840 to 1850

This is where the course starts to get lateral. I am very interested in the idea of linking what happens in the 1840s as far as race relations is concerned with a more comprehensive approach, Most would just deal with Race Relations but I believe that we need to consider the following 'big ideas' decade by decade from this point on:

The longest voyage
Use the template below to fill in the gaps based on the text Olssen and Stenson plus anythng that you can find on these communities from the internet.

The table is maxed out so needs to be modified by bringing it in at the sides. Don’t worry if it goes on to the next page
You will need to input your own and then share with someone else to get the rest


A turning point

Until 1839 there were only about 2,000 immigrants in New Zealand; by 1852 there were about 28,000. The decisive moment for this remarkable change was 1840. In that year the Treaty of Waitangi was signed. This established British authority in European eyes, and gave British immigrants legal rights as citizens. The treaty helped ensure that for the next century and beyond, most immigrants to New Zealand would come from the United Kingdom. It was also in 1840 that the first immigrants assisted by the New Zealand Company arrived. The company introduced long-term settlers directly from Britain, as opposed to those who travelled across the Tasman simply to harvest resources or souls.

The push to emigrate

In early 19th-century Britain conditions were such that millions set off for the New World in search of a better life. After the industrial and agricultural revolutions the population had increased from 16 million in 1801 to 26 million in 1841. However, in formerly rural areas, the enclosure of common lands deprived people of their livelihood, and the introduction of machinery reduced the demand for workers. Factory production of textiles replaced the old rural cottage industries.
There was distress in rural areas. In 1831 southern England saw riots as labourers took their axes to threshing machines. In the Scottish Highlands crofters were driven off their lands, and in Ireland the potato famine of the late 1840s brought a million to their deaths. Some fled to the city, but suffered overcrowding, disease and pollution. Others set off for new lands.
Initially New Zealand attracted few of these people. Almost none came from the Irish famine, and few arrived directly from the Highlands. The disincentives were still great – the long and expensive journey, competing attractions of closer, more settled areas such as the United States and Canada, New Zealand’s continuing reputation as a home of bloodthirsty cannibals, and its association with the convict settlements of Australia.

Not exactly paradise

In evaluating New Zealand’s advantages and prospects as a British colony, Charles Terry wrote in 1842:
‘The islands of New Zealand are uncultivated wastes either of mountains covered with dense forest, of plains and lowlands covered with high ferns, or of swamps and marshes covered with rush and flax without any open spots for pasturage, or of verdant downs and hills for sheep.’1

The New Zealand Company

The New Zealand Company overcame these barriers. Founded as a commercial operation designed for investors, it was also based on the widespread view that population growth – regarded as desirable – was related to food production, and that the solution to mass starvation was to export surplus population. Added to this belief were the ideas of the Englishman Edward Gibbon Wakefield, who developed theories about solving social distress. He argued that to make emigration to a colony ‘pay’, and to promote a ‘civilised’ society rather than a dispersed, barbaric settlement, land should be charged at ‘a sufficient price’. This would ensure that only some would be able to afford to buy land, and that landowners would have labourers to work for them.

Paradise regained

In England, Edward Gibbon Wakefield spoke in glowing terms to a House of Commons committee in 1836:
‘Very near to Australia there is a country which all testimony concurs in describing as the fittest in the world for colonization, as the most beautiful country with the finest climate, and the most productive soil; I mean New Zealand.’2

Promoting New Zealand

Investors in the company were promised 100 acres (40.5 hectares) of farmland and one town acre; the initial 1,000 orders were snapped up in a month. But how to attract the labourers? To combat negative notions about New Zealand, the company used books, pamphlets and broadsheets to promote the country as ‘a Britain of the South’, a fertile land with a benign climate, free of starvation, class war and teeming cities.
Agents spread the good news around the rural areas of southern England and Scotland. As added inducement the company offered free passages to ‘mechanics, gardeners and agricultural labourers’. Some responded and the first ships arrived in Wellington from January 1840, Wanganui from September 1840, New Plymouth from November 1841, and Nelson from February 1842. Two offshoots of the company, the Otago Association and the Canterbury Association, brought people to Dunedin in 1848 and Christchurch in 1850.

New Zealand Company practices

The company’s promises were flights of fancy, only partially made good by dubious land purchases from Māori, one of which eventually led to violence on the Wairau in Marlborough. Wakefield’s neat plans did not work out – land titles were uncertain, there was a lack of useable land and no obvious way to generate income through exports, and there were too many absentee landowners (about three-quarters of those in the Nelson settlement).
By 1843 the new settlers were short of food and the company was virtually bankrupt. Two interventions by the British government saved it from total disaster. Yet the company began to organise large-scale migration to New Zealand. Advertising and propaganda attracted thousands of people over the next 100 years, and the main drawcard, the free or assisted passage, became hugely important. Company immigrants sent letters back home which encouraged others to come out over the years.

The influence of the company

Considering its dubious practices it is easy to disparage the New Zealand Company, but it had a remarkable impact on immigration to New Zealand. Of the 18,000 settlers who came directly from Britain between 1840 and 1852, about 14,000 were brought in by the company or its successors. As a result of the company’s policy, by 1852 the European population in New Zealand had reached some 28,000. The New Zealand Company established the outlines of immigration from Britain to New Zealand, setting in place the mechanisms and promotional pitch that were used by the provinces and the government in later years.

British immigration and the New Zealand Company


The Electronic Text archive
This is an excellent source.

Print the document above as the base for your notes
The overview below gives a good feel for these ideas. Make sure that you view it in outline view.


A site that gives a good overview of the wars
The New Zealand Wars by James Cowan
This is the original book written about the New Zealand Wars in 1922 by James Cowan. The whole book has been scanned and placed on line because it is now out of print.

I am particularly interested in the section on the Northern War for this part of the course. Later, we will look at the historiography of the wars. Keep in mind that from 1845 until 1869, there are a series of wars in different parts of New Zealand - predominantly the North Island.

The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District]

The Northern War

THE NEW ZEALANDER newspaper 1846
This is a link to a contempoaray newspaper that records what is happening in the North!


The Northern War. In the latter part of 1844 trouble commenced with the Maoris in the district north of Auckland, and the settlers were threatened, and asked the Government for assistance. Hone Heke, a powerful chief, whose grandson of the same name was afterwards a member of the Parliament of New Zealand, cut down the flagstaff at Kororareka, on the 10th of January, 1845.
You have to ask yourself why he did this in relation to the Treaty//
This was considered equal to a declaration of war, and a reward of £100 was offered for his apprehension. Heke bitterly resented this; he considered that it was likening him to a pig, which could be bought, and he threatened that, within four months, he would bring 2,000 men to Auckland and cut down the flagstaff there. Fifty soldiers were immediately despatched to Kororareka, and the flagstaff was re-erected. Nevertheless, on the 11th of March, 1845, the town of Kororareka was sacked and destroyed by the Maoris. The property thus destroyed was estimated to be worth about £50,000. Heke, however, not only protected the churches of the Church of England and Roman Catholic, but fought solely against the soldiers and sailors, and even allowed the settlers to escape to the ships without molestation.

A second time Heke cut down the flag-staff at Kororareka, when the settlers joined Nene's war party against Heke. Prominent among them was Mr John Webster, of Opononi. Mr Francis White, a blacksmith, became armourer; Mr William Webster manufactured cartridge boxes; and Judge Maning and Mr G. F. Russell supplied the powder. This war party started from the Upper Hokianga and met Heke at Lake Omapere. Each party built a pa, and fighting was daily carried on for two months, during which time Waka Nene held Heke in check while he awaited the arrival of troops.

The Attack at Okaihau.

Martial law was proclaimed on the 26th of April, 1845, and two days later the British troops, under Colonel Hulme, arrived at the Bay of Islands. Next day they went on to Paihia, and Nene went on board to arrange measures for the campaign. The troops disembarked at Onewara beach on the 3rd of May, where they were joined by 108 men from the ships of war. Joining with Nene's party they advanced along the banks of the Kerikeri, and went through the dense forest by a track previously cut by Nene's men, until they reached Heke's pa at Okaihau. They found the pa strongly defended. The attack commenced on the 8th of May, and when the troops took up their position on three sides of the pa, they met a heavy fire from Heke's party. Kawiti, the fighting chief of Heke, had placed a party of warriors behind a breastwork, on the brow of an adjoining hill; and these also opened fire on the troops. The attacking force, however, soon dislodged them, occupied their breastwork, and kept up a sharp fire on the enemy, which was as briskly returned. Kawiti's force was charged and routed; then about 100 Maoris came out of the pa and attacked the small party in the breastwork. Kawiti rallied his force and again came into the conflict. The battle was waged fiercely all day, and in the evening the order was given to retreat, as it would have entailed too serious sacrifice for the small party to have stormed the pa. The troops retired to Kororareka, and the friendly natives brought in the wounded. The losses were very heavy on both sides. To get reinforcements Colonel Hulme returned to Auckland, taking the wounded with him. Great was the surprise of the Aucklanders at the repulse; and the feeling of insecurity increased. In the meantime, however, Waka Nene kept up a continual guerilla warfare with Heke, and in one of these encounters Heke was wounded in the thigh.

The Fight At Ohaeawai.

Owing to the damage and the loss he had sustained Heke erected a new pa at Ohaeawai, seven miles from the Waimate mission station, and nineteen miles from the Bay of Islands. Though built rapidly it was unusually strong. At this stage Colonel Despard arrived from Sydney with more troops. Being senior officer, he took command of the whole force which now consisted of 520 soldiers, thirty sailors from H.M.S. “Hazard” and eighty volunteers from Auckland. After a tedious march of nine days, they arrived at Ohaeawai on the 25th of June. Next day the attack began, but even the 12-pounder artillery made no impression on the pa. A 32-pounder, with another detachment from H.M.S. “Hazard,” arrived a few days later; this proved somewhat more effective. On the 1st of July, strongly against the advice of Waka Nene, Colonel Despard ordered an assault. The storming party consisted of 160 soldiers, under Majors Macpherson and Bridge, and forty sailors and volunteers. This brave party threw themselves in vain against the palisades, and were shot down by the Maoris behind. The result was a disastrous repulse; in ten minutes 107 men were lying dead or disabled before the pa. The Duke of Wellington, as Commander-in-Chief, considered Colonel Despard should have been tried by court martial for ordering this attack in the face of such hopeless difficulties. Heke's party quietly evacuated their pa the next evening, and left some of their noisiest dogs tied up inside, in order to lead the besiegers to believe that they were still in possession. At daylight on the following morning the troops took possession of the pa. In his hour of victory Heke wrote a characteristic letter to the Governor, in which he said: “If you make peace, do not bear malice against your enemy. Cæsar, Pontius Pilate, Nebuchadnazzar, Pharaoh, Nicodemus, Agrippa, and Herod were kings and governors; did they confer any benefit, or did they not kill Jesus Christ?”
After the troops had taken possession of Ohaeawai hostilities were delayed, awaiting the arrival of reinforcements. This delay lasted four months. During this time Kawiti erected a new pa at his own place. Ruapekapeka, or the Rat's Nest. This was considerably stronger than Ohaeawai and more difficult of approach. Kawiti's love of war and ancient feuds with our allies, Heke's hatred of the British, and Governor Fitzroy's arbitrary conditions of peace kept them still hostile. As the first Maori warrior who had fought against England's trained soldiers Heke rose high in the esteem of his countrymen.

The Capture of Ruapekapeka.

In June, 1845, it was announced in the Imperial Parliament that a despatch had been forwarded to Governor Fitzroy recalling him. It was further announced that Captain Grey, then Governor of South Australia, would succeed him. On the 18th of November, of the same year, Captain Grey officially landed and assumed office. He immediately adopted vigorous measures to bring the war to an end. In order to restore England's prestige he resolved at all costs to institute a victorious campaign. He stopped the sale of arms to the natives and cut off all communication with Heke and Kawiti, and issued regular rations to the Maori allies under Waka Nene. An available force of 1173 men, with the addition of the friendly allies, now commenced operations against Heke, at Ruapekapeka. Two stockades were built close to the pa, in which were mounted one 18-pounder and one 12-pounder Howitzer. On Saturday, the 10th of January, 1846, the action commenced, and an incessant artillery fire was kept up for the whole day. In the evening it was observed that the guns had made three breaches in the outer palisades. The commanding officer then contemplated an assault, but owing to the remonstrances of the friendly chief, Mohi Tawhai, this idea was abandoned. On the following morning (Sunday) some of Nene's men, cautiously approached the breaches, and not hearing any noise they entered and found the pa unoccupied. Immediately they signalled the troops, who rushed forward and entered the pa before the Maoris, who were engaged in worship outside at the back of the pa, could return. Thus Heke and Kawiti lost possession of their stronghold. Their forces commenced a heavy fire on our men from the surrounding woods, but soon retired to another pa, which had been erected about three miles away by Heke, in case they should be driven from Ruapekapeka. The British loss was twelve killed and thirty wounded, and Heke's loss was about twenty-five killed.

The loss of Ruapekapeka disheartened the followers of Heke, and Kawiti, and the latter wrote to the Governor the following letter:—“Friend! O, my esteemed friend, the Governor, I salute you. Great is my regard for you. Friend Governor, I say let peace be made between you and I. I am filled of your riches (cannon balls); thereupon I say, let you and I make peace. Will you not? Yes. This is the termination of my war against you. Friend Governor, I, Kawiti and Hekitenedo, consent to this good message. This is the end of mine to you. It is finished. To my esteemed friend, the Governor.—Kawiti.”
This petition was strongly backed by Tamati Waka Nene, and Sir George Grey thereupon granted a free pardon to all who had been engaged in the rebellion, and allowed them to retain possession of their lands. Thus peace was declared, and Heke's war terminated; no feeling of bitterness remained, and the friendly relations between the Maoris and the settlers north of Auckland have never since been broken.

Of the chief actors in this rebellion, Kawiti afterwards professed Christianity, and died in 1853, at the age of nearly four score years. Heke, who never recovered from the effects of the wound he received at Okaihau, died in 1850, near his old field of battle, and he was buried in a cave near the old mission station at Waimate.

Waka Nene, the famous Ngapuhi chieftain, and friendly ally of the British, had undertaken to protect the settlers against Heke. He therefore raised a force to punish Heke and his fighting general Kawiti, and pursued them until they were compelled to retire.
Wake Nene's valuable services to the Crown throughout the Northern War, and before the British were able to put any soldiers in the field, will ever be remembered. He subsequently received a Government pension of £100 a year, and Sir George Grey was commissioned by the Queen to present him with a beautiful silver chased cup, in recognition of his services. Before his death, in 1871, Waka Nene presented this historic heirloom to his old friend, Mr John Webster, of Opononi.