Wellington City Libraries

Te Matapihi Ki Te Ao Nui

 

Honiana Te Puni

Papakainga

Portrait of Te Puni

Honiana Te Puni, the eldest son of  Rerewha-i-te-rangi and Puku, belonged to Ngāti Te Whiti and Ngāti Tawhirikura hapū of Te Ati Awa.  His wife was Wikitoria Muri-tu-waka-roto and they had seven children.

With his uncle, Raua-ki-tua, he escaped Taranaki invaders attacking Rewarewa Pa by leaping from the cliff into the Waiwhakaiho River. He thus acquired the name Te Puni-kokopu.

He and Te Wharepouri, were involved in the defence of Pukerangiora pa, the battle against the Waikato at Motunui (about 1822) and they also made contact with Jacky Love and Dicky Barrett (around 1828).  Te Puni visited Sydney in the Tohora in 1828. 

Following the defence of Otaka Pa, 1831, Te Puni with many Te Ati Awa, migrated to Waikanae in the heke Tama-te-uaua.  Te Puni cultivated at Te Koanga-a-umu, near Porirua, then moved to Okiwi and Palliser Bay.

With his people he spent time in Wairarapa, moved back to Matiu (1836) and was then invited by Matangi and Te Manihera to take up residence at  Pito-one.

Te Puni and Te Wharepouri boarded the Tory, 20 September 1939, indicated the boundaries of land, and, with others, signed a deed of purchase on 27 September 1839 with the New Zealand Company.  He also signed the Treaty of Waitangi at Port Nicholson on 29 April 1840.

Te Puni and Wi Tako were friendly with the settlers, and after the Boulcott farm incident were issued with 100 muskets to help keep peace.  Te Puni became a friend of Governor Grey and the settlers, but later protested against Donald McLean’s purchase of the Waitara block.   He died 5 December 1870.

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Images

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The images you see in the gallery to the left are displayed with the generous permission of a number of institutions. Click through for a larger version of each image and a link to the source online.

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General Links

Dictionary of New Zealand Biography

Te Ara

Wellington City Libraries' Māori Resources:

Books

Print Books

  • Grey, G. Polynesian mythology. 1855. p. 300
  • Freeman, W. He who digged a pit. 1889. p. 14/o
  • Wallace, Manual of New Zealand. 1886. p. 27
  • New Zealand Blue Book. 8.4 1846 p. 6, 26
  • C.M record 1853 p. 291 (baptized)
  • Wakefield, W. Handbook for New Zealand. 1848. p. 100
  • Wakefield, W. Adventure in New Zealand. 1909. p. 52 etc, 137, 145, 150, 157
  • Barton. Earliest New Zealand. 1927. p. 416, 420, 426
  • Thomson, . Story of New Zealand. 1859. Vol. 2. p. 226.

Digitised Books

From the New Zealand Electronic Text Centre (NZETC):

Te Papa

  • Biography of George Hunter (mentions Te Puni)

    His life came to an untimely end in July 1843, when he caught a chill and died. It is notable that the Maori chief Te Puni sent a generous gift of produce to Hunter’s bereaved family, and appeared with all his tribe to mourn at the funeral. Clearly, while there was some conflict between Maori and Pakeha in the area, there was still a great deal of goodwill.

  • Portrait of Dr Featherston and the Maori chiefs, Wi Tako and Te Puni

Newspaper articles

Paperspast:

From the National Library of New Zealand's Paperspast database (pertaining to the death of Honiana Te Puni).

From The New Zealand Digital Library's Māori Niupepa collection:

  • Te Karere o Poneke 1857-1858: Volume 1, No. 30: 2
  • Te Karere o Poneke 1857-1858: Volume 1, No. 42: 2
  • Te Karere o Poneke 1857-1858: Volume 1, No. 14
  • Te Waka o Te Iwi 1857: Volume 1, No. 1

The Alexander Turnbull Library

Here is a link to a search on TAPUHI (TAPUHI contains records for the items held in the Alexander Turnbull Library unpublished collections) for all material relating to Te Puni:

TAPUHI search (47 records in total)

Letters & Manuscripts

Donald McLean Papers:

These letters are from the Donald McLean Papers, and are pertaining to land issues.

Letter from Te Puni to McLean, 7 Feb 1851
Letter from Te Puni to McLean, 7 Feb 1851Reference Number: MS-Papers-0032-0675B-03. Object #1032023
Available via Alexander Turnbull Library
Letter written from Pitoone
2 pages written 7 Feb 1851 by Honiana Te Puni-kokopu in Petone to Sir Donald McLean, related to Te Ati Awa.
Letter from Te Puni to McLean, 15 Sep 1851
Reference Number: MS-Papers-0032-0675H-09. Object #1032903
Available via Alexander Turnbull Library
Letters written from Pitoone
2 pages written 15 Sep 1851 by Honiana Te Puni-kokopu in Petone to Sir Donald McLean, related to Te Ati Awa.
Letter from Te Honiana Puni to McLean and George Grey (with translation), 12 Oct 1852
Reference Number: MS-Papers-0032-0676E-01. Object #1030003
Available via Alexander Turnbull Library
Letter regarding land and local issues and includes contemporary translation and explanation of context by McLean.
7 pages, related to Sir George Grey, Honiana Te Puni-kokopu, Petone and Te Ati Awa.
Letter from Honiana Te Puni to McLean, 16 Oct 1863
Reference Number: MS-Papers-0032-0687E-05. Object #1032780
Available via Alexander Turnbull Library
1 page, related to Honiana Te Puni-kokopu, Te Ati Awa.

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