Topic: Images of Gate Pā Exhibition (2014) by Debbie McCauley

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From 14 April to 9 May 2014 an Images of Gate Pā Exhibition was held at St George’s Church in Gate Pā, Tauranga. The exhibition was opened by kaumatua Peri Kohu and Buddy Mikaere and comprised drawings, paintings and photographs showing places, activities and some of the people who took part in the events of 1864. This information was researched and written by Debbie McCauley (with thanks to Cliff Simons and Buddy Mikaere) and was made into an exhibition brochure.

Image 1: 43rd Regimental Memorial

Tauranga 43rd Regiment New Zealand Wars Memorial (1865) 

The Tauranga 43rd Regiment New Zealand Wars Memorial was erected in 1865. It commemorates the 26 men of the 43rd (Monmouthshire) Regiment (‘Wolfe’s Own’) who were killed in action or died of wounds received during the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina and the Battle of Te Ranga seven weeks later. The 43rd sailed from Calcutta, India, in September 1863 and were in New Zealand from 1863-1866. They arrived in Tauranga aboard the HMS Miranda and built the Monmouth Redoubt (Taumatakahawai Pā).


Image 2: 68th (Durham) Light Infantry (‘The Faithful Durhams’)

68th (Durham) Light Infantry (‘The Faithful Durhams’) (1865)

Officers and soldiers of the 68th (Durham) Regiment (‘The Faithful Durhams’) in April 1865 at Te Papa Camp. The 68th built a defensive earthwork known as the Durham Redoubt. Under Colonel Greer the full regiment of 700 men were tasked with cordoning off the rear of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina to prevent Māori escape. During the night before the battle the regiment waded through the tidal swamps of Waimapu Estuary and spread out in groups to the south of the pā. When the assault was launched by the 43rd Regiment and Naval Brigade at 4pm on 29 April 1864, the 68th Regiment closed up on the pā and tightened the cordon. A group of about 60 Māori tried to escape out the back of the pā but were driven back in by the 68th. During the night Māori left the pā by slipping through the 68th’s cordon in small groups.


Image 3: Alfred Nesbit Brown (1803-1884)

Alfred Nesbit Brown (1803-1884)

The Brown family arrived in Te Papa (Tauranga) in January 1838. Brown made two land purchases there on behalf of the Church Missionary Society (CMS). The first, of about 7 hectares, included the land on which The Elms (formerly Te Papa Mission Station) stands today. Brown spent many years teaching Christianity to Māori from Tauranga and the Waikato. On the eve of the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina, Brown and his second wife Christina Crombie Grant (née Johnston) (1818-1887) invited British officers to dine with them at Mission House. Only one, Surgeon Major William Manley, survived the next day’s battle. The work of the mission station was disrupted by the New Zealand Wars in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty. Afterwards some local Māori felt betrayed by Brown, and many were displaced from their ancestral lands. The work of the mission station never recovered. Brown died in Tauranga, aged 80, on 7 September 1884.


Image 4: Duncan Alexander Cameron (1808-1888)

Duncan Alexander Cameron (1808-1888) 

Lieutenant General Sir Duncan Alexander Cameron commanded the Highland Brigade during the Crimean War (1853-1856). He arrived in New Zealand in 1861 and was in command of British troops in New Zealand, taking part in the invasion of the Waikato from July 1863. Cameron made his only tactical blunder of the New Zealand Wars when he ordered the attack on Gate Pā at 4pm and suffered heavy losses. He is said to have ‘dashed his field-glass on the ground, turned his back on the fugitives, and retired to his tent to conceal his emotion.’ Cameron increasingly came into conflict with Governor Grey and the colonial administration of Frederick Weld and offered his resignation to the War Office on 7 February 1865. In June he received permission to return to England and left New Zealand on 1 August 1865 where he served as Governor of the Royal Military College Sandhurst from 1868 to 1875. Today, Tauranga’s main road cuts straight through the Gate Pā battle site at Pukehinahina - it is named Cameron Road after General Cameron.


Image 5: Coehorn Mortar

Coehorn Mortar

Six 12 pounder Coehorn mortars were fired upon Gate Pā at Pukehinahina by the British on 29 April 1864. These mortars were cast in bronze (gun-metal) and when charged with ½ pound of black powder propellant and set to shoot at 45 degrees would throw a 4½ inch bomb-shell 750 yards.


Image 6: Gate Pah (April 29th 1864)

Gate Pā (29 April 1864)

This watercolour by Andrew Thomas Carbery (1836-1870) depicts two soldiers standing in the centre foreground, overlooking a plain ringed with hills. In the distance is the palisade of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. Three cannon are pointed towards the pā to the right, with more soldiers and a tent. There are further groups of soldiers in the distance, including some sheltering behind trenches on the left.


Image 7: Gate Pā, Pukehinahina ridge

Gate Pā, Pukehinahina Ridge (c1864)

A rare photograph of Gate Pā on the Pukehinahina Ridge which is high land to the east of the track to the Kaimai Ranges. The pā was just outside the gate in the ditch which enclosed land purchased by the Church Missionary Society in 1839, hence the name Gate Pā. A group of mounted soldiers is visible. The 68th Regiment converted the pā into a redoubt prior to the Battle of Te Ranga (21 June 1864). The remains of the trenches were filled in by Greerton residents in 1877, obliterating all signs of the pā. Another smaller pā had been built to the west of the track where the bowling greens and tennis courts are today. The battle ground has been made an historic reserve with interpretation panels. On 29 April 2007 a carved tomokanga (a welcome to all people onto a sacred place) was added to the site.


Image 8: Breach of the Gate Pā

Breach of the Gate Pā (30 April 1864)

This sketch by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930) shows the earthworks and palisade of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. The view looks east from the breach in the palisade and out to sea in the early morning of 30 April 1864. British soldiers are standing on top of the trenches and a few wounded Māori are seated or lying in the bottom of the trenches. There are two stretcher-bearers to the right taking out the wounded. The two wounded Māori in the right-hand ditch are a young man wounded in the arm and hand, and to his left, Te Reweti Manatini who had received six or seven gunshot wounds from Dr Manley, and whose legs were broken. Reweti was taken to the hospital at Te Papa where he died on 8 May 1864.


Image 9: Plan of attack on Gate Pā

Plan of attack on Gate Pā at Pukehinahina (1864)

This map by George Pulman (1826-1871) shows the disposition of the British forces just before the attack on Gate Pā at Pukehinahina on 29 April 1864. The positions of the 68th Regiment, 43rd Regiment, the Naval Brigade, naval camp, military camp and range of guns from the pā can be seen.


Image 10: Captain John Fane Charles Hamilton (1820-1864)

John Fane Charles Hamilton (1820-1864)

Captain John Fane Charles Hamilton joined the Royal Navy in 1835. He served in the Americas and Crimea. From 22 May 1863 he was Captain of the HMS Esk which served in New Zealand during the New Zealand Wars. On 29 April 1864, during the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina, Hamilton had under his direct command a detachment of the 43rd Regiment and a party of sailors. He died after being struck in the head by a bullet during the battle and was buried at Mission Cemetery. The city of Hamilton, founded in 1864 at the end of the Waikato War, was named after him as is Hamilton Street in Tauranga. In 2013 a life-size bronze statue of Captain Hamilton was gifted to Hamilton and now stands in Civic Square. 


Image 11: Judea redoubt, Tauranga 

Judea redoubt, Tauranga

Judea Redoubt was established to cover any approach from the direction of the Wairoa River along the general line of what is today State Highway 2. It was sometimes known as the ‘India Redoubt’. The redoubt was occupied by 68th Regiment and 1st Waikato Militia.


Image 12: Heni Te Kiri Karamu (1840-1933)

Heni Te Kiri Karamu (1840-1933)

Heni Te Kiri Karamu (1840-1933) (also known as Heni Pore, Jane Russell and Jane Foley) belonged to Ngati Uenuku-kopako and Ngati Hinepare of Te Arawa. She is one of those credited with giving water to the wounded in the aftermath of the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina (29 April 1864). In approximately 1855, at around age fifteen, she married Te Kiri Karamu who worked as a gum-digger in North Auckland. They are said to have had five children together, separating in 1861. At Maketu, on 28 December 1869, Heni married Denis Stephen Foley. They had six children together and in 1870 moved to a Katikati farm. Heni died at King George V Hospital in Rotorua on 24 June 1933. She was buried in Rotorua Cemetery. There is a brass plaque and stained glass window to her at the Memorial Church of St George in Gate Pā.


Image 13: Gilbert Mair’s tomb at St Faiths, Ohinemutu

Gilbert Mair’s tomb at St Faiths, Ohinemutu

Although not present during the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina, Gilbert Mair (1843-1923) compiled The Story of Gate Pa, April 29th, 1864 (1926) from various records and first-hand accounts. Mair took a leading role in campaigns against Te Kooti. He was presented with many taonga (ancestral treasures) by Māori communities throughout the North Island which passed to Auckland Museum in 1890. Mair retired to Tauranga where he died on 29 November 1923. He was buried in the cemetery of Te Arawa at Ohinemutu, Rotorua. Auckland Museum’s Ko Tawa taonga include a pounamu mere (Te Raukaraka) from Otamataha Pā presented to Mair in 1866 and a tewhatewha (two handed whale bone fighting weapon) from Gate Pā that was unearthed at Pukehinahina in 1875.


Image 14: William George Nicholas Manley (1831-1901)

William George Nicholas Manley (1831-1901)

On 28 April 1864, the eve of the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina, British officers gathered for dinner with Brown and his wife Christina at The Elms Mission House. Assistant Surgeon William George Nicholas Manley was the only one of those officers to survive the following day’s battle. Manley was part of the storming party into Gate Pā. He was awarded the Victoria Cross (VC) for attending to HMS Harrier’s Commander Edward Hay (1835-1864) as he was carried away mortally wounded, and for then returning to the pā to search for more wounded. He is also the only recipient of both the VC and the Iron Cross. Manley Grove in Gate Pā was named after him.


Image 15: Sketch in trenches, Gate Pā (30 April 1864)

Sketch in trenches, Gate Pā (30 April 1864) 

Horatio Gordon Robley’s sketch depicts two wounded Māori men wrapped in blue-grey blankets, sitting in one of the Gate Pā trenches at Pukehinahina, along with a spade. Sparse palisades are shown on the rampart in the background. Another Māori man is visible inside a shelter to the right. The man in the centre is Te Reweti Manatini who had received six or seven gunshot wounds from Dr Manley outside the pā as the stormers retired, and whose legs were broken. Reweti had been second in command at Gate Pā. He was taken to the hospital at Te Papa where he died on 8 May 1864. Robley divided his flask of brandy with these and other wounded Māori as he sketched them in the early morning of the day following the battle.


Image 16: Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā)

Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā) at Te Papa

In 1828 Ngati Maru of Hauraki, armed with muskets, attacked Tauranga and destroyed the Ngāi Te Rangi pā of Otamataha at the northern point of the Te Papa peninsula.  Most people were killed or enslaved. Missionaries who visited afterwards found an appalling scene of devastation. In 1838 and 1839 Alfred Brown purchased land on the Te Papa peninsula. He established Te Papa Mission Station and the nearby tapu (sacred) area was chosen as a suitable place for a graveyard. All the soldiers and sailors who died at the Battles of Gate Pā and Te Ranga were buried here. It is also the resting place of many Māori warriors who fell in battle or died in the military hospital. Chief Rāwiri Puhirake, who was killed at Te Ranga, was exhumed and reinterred here in 1874. Hōri Ngātai, whose account of Gate Pā appears in Mair’s The Story of Gate Pa, was buried here when he died in 1912. One of the monuments is the Tauranga Māori New Zealand Wars Memorial which was erected in 1997, replacing an earlier marker in memory of 14 Māori warriors who fought against British troops during the Battle of Te Ranga (21 June 1864).


Image 17: Samuel Mitchell (1841-1894)

Samuel Mitchell (1841-1894) 

In December 1860 Samuel Mitchell was appointed to HMS Harrier. He was Commander Edward Hay’s Coxswain and stayed close to Hay during the assault on Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. Mitchell carried the mortally injured Hay out through the rear of the pā under fire, even though Hay had ordered Mitchell to abandon him. For this act, Mitchell was awarded the Victoria Cross on 23 July 1864. Tauranga’s Mitchell Street is named after him. Mitchell drowned, aged 52, on 16 March 1894 in the flooded Mikonui River near his farm. On the day of his death it appears he had tried to cross the Mikonui and had been struck by a floating tree or a fresh (a sudden rise in the river level) and drowned. His body was found down the coast three days later by William Green, a farmer in the area and a former sailor who had also participated in the Battle of Gate Pā. Mitchell was buried in the cemetery on a hill above the township of Ross on the West Coast of the South Island.


Image 18: Monmouth Cannon

Monmouth Cannon

As part of the restoration of Monmouth Redoubt (Taumatakahawai Pā) in 1898 four 6-pounder Armstrong guns, similar to ones used during the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina were installed. Two cannons were also donated, one in 1899 and one in 1914. The one cannon remaining in the redoubt is a smooth-bore muzzle loader. In 2013 in recognition of the history of the area and the old pā site, carvings were commissioned for the new Tauranga Police Station. These hang on the wall facing the redoubt. The pou represent Archdeacon Alfred Brown, Taumatakahawai Pā, and the battle of Gate Pā.


Image 19:  Monmouth Redoubt (Taumatakahawai Pā)

Monmouth Redoubt (Taumatakahawai Pā)

The old sea cliff at the northern end of The Strand looking eastward over the Waimapu harbour was known to Māori as the Taumatakahawai Pā.  It was abandoned in 1828 after an attack on the northern end of the Te Papa peninsula by Ngati Maru from Hauraki. Early in 1864 the 43rd (Monmouthshire) Regiment (‘Wolfe’s Own’), which gave the redoubt its name, arrived at Te Papa and re-fortified the position. The British troops occupied the area until they finally left some four years later. In the late 1860s it became the headquarters of the Armed Constabulary until they were transferred to Opotiki in 1877.


Image 20:  New Zealand Wars Monument (Greenwich, London)

New Zealand Wars Monument (Greenwich, London)

At the Old Royal Naval College in Romney Road, Greenwich, London, England, is a monument commemorating 21 officers and men of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines killed in action during the New Zealand Wars. It was erected by the survivors of the campaign in c1872. A granite obelisk, it stands on a plinth with a rope twist and chain decorations. The inscription lists the names and ships of the casualties; ‘This monument is erected by the surviving officers and men to the memory of their comrades who fell in action in New Zealand during the years 1863-1864’.


Image 21: Surrender of the Ngāi Te Rangi at Te Papa (25th July, 1864)

Surrender of the Ngāi Te Rangi at Te Papa (25 July 1864)

A scene by Horatio Gordon Robley showing 112 Ngāi Te Rangi bringing in their arms and the arms of British soldiers captured in battle. The White Ensign is flying on a flagpole and a large group of Māori is seated, with Chief Hōri Ngātai standing in the centre and speaking: ‘This declaration of ours is fixed. We shall not depart from it. Our guns now lie before you… Our purpose is fixed; the peace is binding. Those who have been fighting are all here, except those slain in battle. I give up fighting. My hands are at rest (pepeke) let yours be at rest also. Let there be no more firing of guns in this place’. Captured British swords are plunged into the ground close to the table where the peace agreement is being signed in front of Colonel Greer’s residence ‘High Trees’. Much later this would become the Commercial Travellers’ Club, but today is the site of the 11-storey Kingsview Towers at 6 Durham Street, Tauranga.


Image 22: Hōri Ngātai (c1832-1912)

Hōri Ngātai (c1832-1912)

Ngāi Te Rangi chief Hōri Ngātai was a veteran of the Battles at Gate Pā and Te Ranga. He surrendered arms on 25 July 1864 and promised that Ngāi Te Rangi would never return to warfare, declaring ‘Let there be peace in the land’. In 1901, when in his 70s, Ngātai related his account of Gate Pā to historian James Cowan, and then to Gilbert Mair in 1903. His account was published posthumously in Mair’s book The Story of Gate Pa, April 29th, 1864 (1926) with an introduction by Cowan. Two years before his death, Ngātai was dragged for some distance by a horse, an accident over which he never recovered. He died at his Whareroa home on 24 August 1912. Ngātai’s memorial at the Mission Cemetery was unveiled in August 1920. Ngātai Road in Otumoetai is named after him. 


Image 23: Pene Taka Tuaia (c1814-1889)

Pene Taka Tuaia (c1814-1889) 

Pene Taka Tuaia was related to Rāwiri Tuaia Puhirake. He fought against the Ngāpuhi invasions of Tauranga in the 1830s, and the 1835-45 war with Te Arawa. From the 1850s he became a leader of the Ngāti Rangi hapu of Tauranga Moana. His pā was Poteriwhi, which was situated high above the east bank of the lower Wairoa River and which he helped to design. Tuaia learnt his military engineering during the Northern War of 1845-1846 and used his experiences to design the defences of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. This new pā design made extensive use of anti-artillery bunkers (rua). Tuaia took up arms again with Rāwiri Tata (of Pirirakau) during the small-scale conflict known as the Tauranga Bush Campaign in 1867. This was a Māori response to surveying of confiscated land. Tuaia also stated that he was seeking revenge for the death of Puhirake at Te Ranga. Tuaia continued to protest for the rest of his life. He died at his village, Te Puna, on 3 July 1889.


Image 24: Robley & Te Hiahia

Robley & Te Hiahia

Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930) is pictured with Raniera Te Hiahia who was a Māori guide to the Tauranga field force. Robley followed in his father’s footsteps and became a professional soldier whilst also inheriting his mother’s artistic skills and becoming an accomplished sketcher and water-colourist. In 1863 he left Burma with the 68th (Durham) Regiment (‘The Faithful Durhams’) for the New Zealand Wars, landing at Auckland on 8 January 1864. Robley purchased a Māori vocabulary and other books about Māori. In April Robley took his troops to Tauranga where they joined General Cameron’s forces in the attack on Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. After the battle he remained in Tauranga for 19 months during which time he continued drawing. He completed a series of detailed sketches of the Māori defences at Pukehinahina, Māori wounded, surrenders and other scenes of the time. He continued his interest in tattooing and completed accurate sketches of the tattoo designs of the wounded and dead.


Image 25: New Zealander (1864)

New Zealander (1864)

Sketch by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930). A Māori warrior seated at the base of a defensive pit, a palisade above his head. He is holding a musket in his left hand and a tomahawk in his right, beside his knee. A cartridge case is around his neck and he is wearing a flax piupiu (skirt). He also has full moko. This sketch is thought to be from the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina (29 April 1864).


Image 26: The Gate Pā, Tauranga

The Gate ,Tauranga

Sketch by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930).


Image 27: Frederick Augustus Smith (1826-1887)

Frederick Augustus Smith (1826-1887)

Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Augustus Smith was an Irish recipient of the Victoria Cross. Smith entered the British Army in 1849 and saw action during the Crimean War at Alma, Inkerman and Sebastopol. Smith was 37 years old and a Captain in the 43rd (Monmouthshire) Regiment (‘Wolfe’s Own’) during the New Zealand Wars. He was awarded the Victoria Cross (VC) for his actions during the Battle of Te Ranga (21 June 1864): ‘He is stated to have led on his Company in the most gallant manner at the attack on the Māori’s position, and, although wounded previously to reaching the Rifle Pits, to have jumped down into them, where he commenced a hand to hand encounter with the Enemy, thereby giving his men great encouragement, and setting them a fine example’.


Image 28: Hēnare Wiremu Taratoa (c1830-1864)

Hēnare Wiremu Taratoa (c1830-1864)

At Poteriwhi, the pā of Pene Taka Tuaia on the lower Wairoa River, Ngāi Te Rangi leader Hēnare Wiremu Taratoa wrote up a Code of Conduct for the coming battle. Taratoa also wrote a Challenge to Colonel Greer, giving as the reason for war aggression by the British troops. It is said that during the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina (29 April 1864) Taratoa brought water to Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Jackson Parkin Booth (1830-1864) who had been shot through the spine and right arm. Booth was to die of his injuries the following day. There is a stained-glass window dedicated to Taratoa’s act in Lichfield Cathedral, England. A white marble frieze on the memorial to Ngāi Te Rangi Chief Rāwiri Puhirake at Mission Cemetery (Otamataha Pā) depicts the event. Taratoa was killed during the Battle of Te Ranga (21 June 1864). On his body was found the Poteriwhi Code of Conduct along with the words in Māori... ‘If thine enemy hunger feed him, if he thirst, give him to drink’ Romans 12:20 (Ki tematekai tou hoariri, whangainga: Ki te matewai, whakainumia). His body was initially buried in the trenches of Te Ranga, but later moved to Mission Cemetery.


Image 29: Monmouth redoubt (1864)

Monmouth Redoubt (c1864)

View of Tauranga taken by an unidentified photographer around the time of the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. A note on the back of the file print reads: ‘From the right … the cemetery (with the Mount [Mauao] in the background); Monmouth redoubt; residence of Capt Sellars of coasting steamer Tauranga; school; field H. Q, Durham redoubt’. Captain Daniel Sellars (1830-1880) was married to Jane Faulkner, daughter of early Tauranga trader John Lees Faulkner.


Image 30: Tauranga at the time of Gate Pā Battle (1864)

Tauranga at the time of the Battle of Gate Pā (1864)

This image shows the tents of the British Te Papa Military Camp to the right and the buildings of Tauranga in the distance on the right. The church-like building with a spire on the right was the Church Missionary Society’s Mission Institute, taken over as a commissariat (place for supply of food and equipment) by the troops. A low cliff drops to the water and there are several small boats in the harbour. The view is from the west side of Tauranga Harbour. Tauranga’s famous Aspen Tree (actually a Canadian Cottonwood) was located on the corner of Willow and McLean streets from c1865 until safety concerns and the tree’s declining health necessitated its removal in 2011. Legend told of the tree’s origins as being from a soldier who dismounted from his horse and pushed his switch into the fertile soil. However history tells that the tree originated as part of a shelter belt planted in the 1860s to shelter the gardens of the Church Missionary Society’s Maori Boys’ School that was part of the Mission Station.


Image 31: Tauranga (1866)

Tauranga (1866)

A sketch by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930) showing the Tauranga township. Most likely completed in 1866, the year prior to the Tauranga Bush Campaign of 1867.


Image 32:  Raniera Te Hiahia: Guide to the Tauranga field force (1864)

Raniera Te Hiahia: Guide to the Tauranga field force (1864)

An 1864 watercolour by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930) of Raniera Te Hiahia (Daniel) depicted in European uniform and kneeling whilst holding a rifle at the ready. Ammunition boxes are strapped around his neck and waist. He has facial moko. Te Hiahia was one of the Māori guides to the British in Tauranga. During the night before the the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina (29 April 1864) Te Hiahia led the 68th (Durham) Regiment through the tidal swamps of Waimapu Estuary and around to the back of the pā. Te Hiahia is said to have lived to over 100 years of age, dying in c1902.


Image 33: Petarika Te Kanae (?-1864)

Petarika Te Kanae (?-1864)

Tauranga Māori were in attendance at the Pūkawa hui in April 1857 where Pōtatau Te Wherowhero (?-1860) was selected as the first Māori King. He was crowned at his marae in Ngāruawāhia in April 1858. The movement aimed to unite Māori, act as a counterbalance to Queen Victoria (1819-1901), and halt the sale and alienation of Māori land. Tauranga Maori formally pledged their allegiance to the new King in a letter dated 5 April 1859 which was signed by 15 Tauranga Rangatira (chiefs). These included Petarika Te Kanae from Te Matewaitai (Otumoetai). Te Kanae was later killed during the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina (29 April 1864), being bayoneted in left eyebrow. This sketch of him and his full moko is by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930).


Image 34: Te Kuha (1864)

Te Kuha Te Mea (1864)

Te Kuha Te Mea was Chief of the Ngaituwhiwhia hapu of Ngāi Te Rangi and was a ‘great friend’ of Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930) who completed this painting. During his youth Te Kuha lived with Captain Gilbert Mair’s father at Wahapu, Bay of Islands, and from that association took the name of Te Mea in 1828. He was a noted wood carver and fought against the British during the Tauranga Campaign. Robley noted that his moko was complete and distinguished by a ‘pikau’ scroll on the centre of the nose.


Image 35:  The 43rd and 68th Regimental camps at Te Papa (1864)

The 43rd and 68th Regimental camps at Te Papa (1864)

On 21 January 1864, 700 British soldiers disembarked at Tauranga, firstly commanded by Colonel George Jackson Carey (1822-1872) (later Brigadier-General) and then later by Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Harpur Greer (1821-1886). They set up camp at the northern end of the Te Papa peninsula. This drawing of the 43rd and 68th Regimental camps at Te Papa is by Carey and appeared in the Illustrated London News (1864).


Image 36: Te Ranga Plan of Attack

Te Ranga Plan of Attack

Seven weeks after the Battle of Gate Pā at Pukehinahina, the British were to have their utu when they attacked unprepared Māori on 21 June 1864 in what has become known as the Battle of Te Ranga. On that morning Greer had left Te Papa on a reconnaissance mission with a force of 600 men from the 43rd, 68th and 1st Waikato Militia. Five kilometres inland from Gate Pā they discovered 500 Māori working on a new fortification. Greer sent for reinforcements and when an extra 220 men arrived two hours later the British charged. Unlike Gate Pā they charged across the whole of the Māori line. The battle rates amongst the bloodiest of the New Zealand Wars. In desperate hand-to-hand fighting, British troops exacted terrible vengeance for their defeat at Gate Pā. The Māori garrison was unable to hold the incomplete defences and retreated when Puhirake was killed. Taratoa was also killed, then subsequently buried in the trenches at Te Ranga. Tauranga lost some of their finest chiefs.  


Image 37: Te Ranga Battle Map

Te Ranga Battle Map

Map of the action during the Battle of Te Ranga on 21 June 1864. In early winter of 1864 Rāwiri Puhirake’s fighting force were strengthened by the arrival of allies from Ngāti Rangiwewehi (Rotorua), Ngāti Pikiao (Rotoiti) and Ngāti Porou. He made plans to build a new pā inland from Gate Pā. Puhirake seems to have had concerns about the eventual site chosen at Te Ranga. Māori arrived at Te Ranga late on 20 June 1864 and started work digging rifle pits. Hōri Ngātai, described how ‘some of us dug without spirit because Rawiri did not like that position for a pā... Te Ranga was chosen by Reha.’ Ngātai also said, ‘we worked on till the sun was high. The soldiers were then seen advancing. Enough. We fought’. Puhirake decided to stand and fight, even when their situation appeared hopeless. This appears to be because he thought that reinforcements, led by Taraia Ngakuti of Ngati Tamatera, were in on their way. But no support arrived, and when Puhirake was killed Māori withdrew, suffering heavy casualties.


Image 38: The war in New Zealand, storming rifle pits at Te Ranga (21 June 1864)

The War in New Zealand - Storming the Rifle Pits at Te Ranga (21 June 1864)

‘The War in New Zealand - Storming the Rifle Pits at Te Ranga, June 21, 1864’ is a drawing by Nicholas Chevalier (1828-1902) from a sketch by G Lewis. An engraving was created by Samuel Calvert (1828-1913). This image appeared in The Illustrated Melbourne Post on 20 August 1864.


Image 39: Māori arms taken at Te Ranga fight (21 June 1864)

Māori arms taken at Te Ranga (21 June 1864)

The Māori arms taken at the Battle of Te Ranga (21 June 1864) were sketched by Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930): 1. Toki Patiti (hatchet); 2. Cartridge box; 3. Patu/Mere (clubs); 4. Kotiate; 5. Koikoi hand spears; 6. Toki Kakauroa (long handled hatchet/spear); 7. Tupara (double barrelled guns); 8. Taiaha (long club/spear); 9. Enfield rifle bayonet; 10 / 10A. Tewhatewha; 11. Rifle cartridges.


Image 40:  Sketch Awaiting the Order to Advance (April 1864)

Awaiting the Order to Advance (1864)

A photograph taken at sunrise on 29 April 1864, the morning of the attack on Gate Pā at Pukehinahina. General Sir Duncan Cameron (centre right, hands in pockets, leaning against wagon wheel) surrounded by British regulars, local militia and Volunteers. Also named is Corporal Kelly (centre back row, shortest, with big beard). The three men on extreme right are named as Sergeant Hussey, Sergeant Smith and Dr Joseph Henry. Standing next to Cameron is Captain St John (on Cameron’s right is a member of the 1st Waikato). Seated on the gun behind Cameron is Captain Hunter. Sergeant Major Kerr is possibly the man with the bushy beard. A tall Royal Artillery officer in a braided patrol jacket stands left of the general, and Royal Artillery sergeants and gunners are seated at the left. At the front centre is Sergeant Major Jackson (1st Waikato) atop a 12 pounder Coehorn mortar, with its bomb shells to the left of it. Also pictured is a small dog.

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Images of Gate Pā Exhibition (2014) by Debbie McCauley