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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 79

The Early Settlers

page 32

The Early Settlers.

The first white settlers of Hawke's Bay were the whalers, who seem to have first come to the hay in the later thirties. When they arrived the bulk of the native population was gathered on the northern shores of the bay between the Wairoa river and the Mahia. This was a result of an invasion by the Taupo and Waikato tribes, who harried the Heretaunga natives and severely defeated them at Hotoatara (a pa on the Te Ante Lake) in 1819 and again in 1822, and at Pakake (the pa on Gough Island, Port Ahuriri in 1824. The capture of these strongholds was followed by a migration to Nukutaoroa, on the Mahia, where the native population remained till about 1840, when the proclamation of British rule gave them confidence, and they gradually returned. The chief Hapuku was one of the few who escaped from Pakake by canoe, making his way to Wairoa. Tiakitai only escaped by arriving at the port too late Por the fight. Renata Kawepo was taken prisoner at one of the Rotoatara fights and was carried off to the north. He escaped and made his way to the mission station at the Hay of Islands, returning to Ahuriri with Mr Colenso.