Learning & Research - Akoranga me Rangahau
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Taranaki Stories

These stories capture the very essence of Taranaki – the people and the landscape.
They record the achievements of those who live here, the struggles of the first settlers, the determination to overcome challenges, those who have made their mark on not only their own, but also future generations.
But the stories are not just about hardship – they are also inspiring, thrilling, mystifying, enlightening and entertaining.


Taranaki Stories

Showing stories tagged as land.

A family of surveyors

by Sorrel Hoskin on 11 December 2009

It was Wellington who visited New Zealand first, travelling from Plymouth for a brief stay in 1835. He returned full of enthusiasm for the new country and, when the opportunity arose, encouraged his brothers to shift there. In 1840, Wellington was appointed chief assistant surveyor to the New Zealand Company. After working in Wellington (where work was washed out) and Wanganui he joined his...

The Bell Block – Francis Dillon Bell

by Rhonda Bartle on 11 December 2009

Born in 1822, Francis Dillon Bell was a slightly chubby man with thick side whiskers who, by all accounts, was a complete paradox. Quick, clever and hard-working, he was also vain, superficial and unreliable.   A tall, good-looking man, his face was apparently flawed by drooping eyelids. And after several liaisons with both Pakeha and Maori women, he did seem to settle down once he married....

Dicky Barrett Part 4: On the Trail of a Whalers Descendent

by Rhonda Bartle on 11 December 2009

Sitting across the table from John Honeyfield, I think he must wear the same kind of twinkle in his eye that Dicky Barrett did. John is a direct descendant of the Barrett family - his great-great-grandmother Caroline was Dicky Barrett's daughter.   It's interesting to meet John Honeyfield. We have a few things in common. My great-great-great-grandfather, George Ashdown, sailed with Dicky Barrett...

Dicky Barrett Part 3: Quest for Land

by Rhonda Bartle on 11 December 2009

In 1839, the Tory pulled into the Sugar Loaves with Barrett and family aboard. For six years Barrett had been whaling at Te Awaiti at Queen Charlotte Sounds. Now he was employed by Edward Jerningham Wakefield of The New Zealand Company as interpreter to help negotiate the purchase of Maori land.  Together they had already bought land at Wellington - though not without sweat and tears - and...

Dicky Barrett Part 1: The Ngamotu Years

by Rhonda Bartle on 11 December 2009

It's not known for certain, but it's thought Dicky Barrett was born in 1807, in either Durham or Bermondsey, both places of dirt and poverty, slums and alleyways.  An amiable, respected, simple fellow, he had already been a seaman for six years when he sailed from England for Sydney in 1828, at the age of twenty-one.  He signed on as first mate on the small Australian ship Adventure captained by...

A Convoluted History - The Whiteley Land

by Rhonda Bartle on 02 December 2009

The Whiteley land has always been in dispute, from the earliest times when it was bought from Maori without full iwi permission, right through to a tricky Crown grant that has been questioned at least four times.   It's been cut up, leased and the boundaries changed until the original purpose for acquiring it seems lost in the paperwork.   Asking the questions Trying to grasp the historic...