Author(s): Paul Goldsmith
Te Hemara Tauhia fell before he rose, only to fall again ÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂ each change in fortune the product of European intervention in Aotearoa. In this complete biography of the Ngati Rongo/Kawerau chief, Paul Goldsmith details Te HemaraÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂs life from his part in the musket wars in the 1820s through to his death in the 1880s. Te Hemara TauhiaÃÂÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂs hapu Ngati Rongo/Kawerau, who were traditionally based around Waiwera, were decimated by Nga Puhi during the musket wars of the 1820s. Then in the 1850s Te Hemara Tauhia prospered in a way that would have been impossible in a pre-European context. Using the Native Land Court and native title to his advantage Te Hemara made his living selling land, eventually claiming part ownership in lands to which he had little or no connection. Many books have related the fall of chiefs in relation to European intervention in New Zealand, yet little has been written about the success of some Maori in the context of colonisation. This is a fascinating and rounded account of the fortunes of a North Island chief who, for a time, was able to manipulate European law to his advantage.