Section 1, Section 2, Section 3, Section 4, Section 5, Section 6, Section 7, Section 8

From: J Williams
Date: Thursday, 11 January 2007 11:44 p.m.
Subject: NZ History

I've just being doing a little reading on NZ history and have come across your website ( and a couple of others, which claim to have evidence of people arriving in NZ, which out date Maori settlement. I found this very interesting and would like to read more on this topic, as I'm open to other points of view. Yet I must say any credible academic information on this issue i have struggled to find. I've looked up various Associations of Archaeology sites and none have mentioned pre Maori finds in NZ, nor do any other credible readings mention pre Maori settlement. I would be interested if you could provide me with links to credible reading on this issue. Although I may have a different point of view on this topic, it is hard to learn more about your view when the only evidence I can find on this issue I would not be able to incorporate in any University papers, as most of it would be seen as poorly sourced. It would be greatly appreciated if you could present me with further reading.

J. Williams

Hi John,

If you look at the situation you're in as a student of history, it's very controlled. You are in a somewhat unenviable position, where you have to pass exams, based upon the required reading material and sources nominated for study within your university course. The parameters have become quite limited in the past few decades and much of your subject matter is little more than tailored or politically-correct history, with large omissions in the content.

The fact that there was large-scale settlement of New Zealand long before the coming of the Polynesian-Melanesian Maoris was "common knowledge" when I was growing up and openly acknowledged by all the old tohungas, kaumatuas, elders and kuias of every iwi.

As far as reading resources are concerned, all you have to do is delve into the old history books of New Zealand and it's all there in profusion. Authors like James Cowan , Edward Tregear, Elsdon Best , Rev. Richard Taylor, Rev. John Grace, Stephenson Percy Smith, Sir George Grey, Sir Peter Buck, etc., etc., make mention of these ancient people. A very good source for copious references to the pre-Maori Patupaiarehe and Turehu is the "Minute Books" of the Native Land Court.

Here are a couple of quotes from old books:

Reverend Richard Taylor wrote in 1855: 'Besides gods the natives believed in the existence of other beings, who lived in communities, built pas, and were occupied with similar pursuits to those of men. These were called Patu-paiarehe. Their chief residences were on the tops of lofty hills, and they are said to have been the spiritual occupants of the country prior to Maori, and to retire as they advance. The Wanganui natives state, that when they first came to reside on the banks of the river, almost all the chief heights were occupied by the Patu-paiarehe, who gradually abandoned the river, and that even until a few generations ago, they had their favourite haunts there. These may be accounts of an aboriginal race mixed with fable; there are several things to warrant the idea that the Maori were not the first inhabitants of the land.
The Patu-paiarehe were only seen early in the morning, and are represented as being white, and clothed in white garments of the same form and texture of their own; in fact, they may be called the children of the mist. They are supposed to be of large size, and may be regarded as giants, although in some respects they resemble our fairies. They are seldom seen alone, but generally in large numbers; they are loud speakers and delight in playing the putorino (flute); they are said to nurse their children in their arms, the same as Europeans and not carry them in the Maori style, on the back or hip. Their faces are papatea, not tattooed, and in this respect also, they resemble Europeans. They hold long councils, and sing very loud; they often go and sit in cultivation's, which are completely filled with them, so as to be frequently mistaken for a war party; but they never hurt the ground…
The belief in the Patu-paiarehe is very general; many have affirmed to me that they have repeatedly met with them. Albinos are said to be their offspring, and they are accused of frequently surprising women in the bush.'
(see Articles from "Te Ika A Maui, NZ and its Inhabitants", by Rev Richard Taylor, written in 1855; facsimile reprint in 1974 A.H. & A.W. Reed.

This is a picture of some of the "Wanganui" Patu-paiarehe alluded to by Rev. Richard Taylor. Each coffin seen is laboriously hand hewn from a single log segment. The lids were similarly made, using a slab plank and then hollowing it centrally to form a lip around the perimeter, which would secure the lid to the coffin and ensure a tight fit. The skeletons seen have the rounded European skull form and the face-line, from the teeth past the nose, misses the brow by a reasonable margin, consistent with a European face-line and inconsistent with Maori physiology. In the foreground is a jaw mandible, which does not display the features of a Polynesian "rocker jaw". Rather than having a continuous downward convex curve on the lower border, this jaw has the upward indentation or concavity of the European jaw.

Another quote:

Generally speaking, Ngati Hotu were of medium height and of light colouring. In the majority of cases they had reddish hair. They were referred to as urukehu. It is said that during the early stages of their occupation of Taupo they did not practice tattooing as later generations did, and were spoken of as te whanau a rangi (the children of heaven) because of their fair skin.
There were two distinct types. One had a kiri wherowhero or reddish skin, a round face, small eyes and thick protruding eyebrows. The other was fair-skinned, much smaller in stature, with larger and very handsome features. The latter were the true urukehu and te whanau a rangi. In some cases not only did they have reddish hair, but also light coloured eyes.
(See Tuwharetoa, chapter 7, page 115, by Rev. John Grace).

Another resource of recommended reading is: American Indians In The Pacific, by Thor Heyerdahl, Stockholm 1952. Any mention of this heretical, exhaustive work to your professors is bound to send them into a tirade of isolationist rebuke. The fact is that no-one has ever been able to adequately answer the archaeological or anthropological arguments raised therein and the more that time goes by, the more Heyerdahl is proven to be correct in the conclusions he draws about our region. NZ historians like Professor Kerry Howe have failed miserably in trying to demolish Heyerdahl's comprehensive analysis.

You'll probably have to "play along" and give "lip service" to the PC and politically-expedient versions of history that you're obliged to absorb. Accreditation and a career comes by compliance to and agreement with the conclusions of your social-historian professors or the official organs that control historical interpretation (your so-called credible academics, who, for their own career survival, neglect to mention large segments of our recorded history or the many archaeological anomalies). The older works, which were far closer to the true source than any of the modern works, are conveniently discounted under the pretext that they are "Eurocentric". The fact that historians like Sir George Grey or James Cowan and many others, interviewed the most learned Maori elders of their day, at length, or that Elsdon Best lived with Maori for about twenty years and rose to the status of tohunga, is considered irrelevant. The facts recorded, directly from the oral tradition sources, don't "sit well" with nouveau, politically expedient, historical interpretations, so these exhaustive, impeccable works, by "true investigative historians", are labelled unreliable or biased, in order to destroy their credibility.

A very sound insight into the abysmal state of present-day New Zealand history scholarship, is found in "The Waitangi Tribunal and New Zealand History, by Dr. Giselle Byrnes. Essentially, many NZ historians, nowadays, are reduced to a level comparable to that of a lawyer, and lawyers have clients who wish to win cases. Therefore, history gets fudged, with huge sins of omission or commission, such that the finalised contents and conclusions are tailored to fit prescribed and premeditated needs or outcomes, whether social, political or financial.

I hope, John, that you can eventually give us "warts 'n all true history...God knows, New Zealanders are starved for a few crumbs of truth amongst the avalanche of propaganda!

Best wishes,