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The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District]



Orakau is a pastoral district on the Puniu river, about three miles from Kihikihi. The land is good, to judge by the numerous herds of cattle and sheep to be seen in passing through the settlement. It adjoins the old confiscation boundary of the King Country, into which settlement is extending. It was at Orakau that the Maoris, under Rewi, fought their last battle with the British troops under General Cameron. They made a memorable stand, and when asked to surrender, they shouted back defiantly that they would fight for ever and ever, and that the women, sooner than accept any concession, would fight too. But even such heroism had to give way to superior numbers and weapons, and trained military talent.

Corboy, Joseph Augustine, Farmer, Orakau. Mr. Corboy, who served for some time as a member of the Kihikihi Town Board, was born in 1871 at Kihikihi. He served as a volunteer in No. 3 Waikato Mounted Rifles. Mr. Corboy, who is farming 200 acres of land at Orakau, was married, in 1894, to a daughter of the late Mr. M. Cullen, of Onehunga, and has two daughters and one son.

Hutchinson, John, Farmer, “Braystones,” Orakau. Mr. Hutchinson's farm contains about 600 acres of good land laid down in English grasses, and is admirably adapted for rearing stock. It is memorable as being the scene of the last battle of the Waikato war, when the gallant chief Rewi made his famous defence against the British troops and from whose words of defiance footballers have adopted their familiar cry of “Ake Ake.” Many warlike curios, such as rusty bayonets, shako-plates, bullets, etc., are often ploughed up on the field. The owner of this historic spot is a native of Cumberland, where he was born in 1848, and brought up to farming. His family have been dwellers in the county since the days of “Queen Bess,” and his father, who is page 736 living still, owns the land that the family have held for upwards of 300 years. Mr. Hutchinson arrived in this Colony in 1877, and soon after commenced farming on his present land with marked success. He has taken an active part in local affairs, and has been chairman of the Mangahoe Drainage Board and a member of the committee of the Waikato Agricultural and Pastoral Society. He was for some years on the Waipa County Council. Mr. Hutchinson is married and has one son and seven daughters.