Monday, 1 February 2016

Scrapbooks of newspaper clippings about Māori 1970-1975

A collection of 1970s newspaper articles regarding Māori is available to view in the Sir George Grey Special Collections reading room or to search online at Index Auckland. The scrapbooks contain many useful items for whakapapa or historical research, from obituaries to articles promoting the introduction of Māori language teaching in schools. Copies are also available in the Central Research Centre.

Even though the clippings are not precisely dated, nor source newspapers always identified, reading through the Scrapbooks reveals areas of concern and celebration for Māori at that time.

Many stories address the impact of Māori migration from rural to urban areas, and the growing pressure to entrench Māori language in the education system. Mrs Hana Jackson, for example, presented a petition to the government calling for the teaching of Māori in schools: it was signed by 30,000 people. The country’s first television show in the Māori language (with English subtitles) was also broadcast - “Taku Toa” delivered a selection of songs and haka filmed at the Hunua Falls.


Minister of Māori Affairs, Matiu Rata, proposed a change of definition of Māori to include anyone with Māori blood no matter what proportion (the Māori Affairs Act 1953 had defined Māori as being a person who was half-Māori or more). Another perspective on this issue was given by Tom Waiwai of Wellington who registered his baby granddaughter Deirdre Hemingway as a “half-caste European,” the first person to be officially described this way.

Māori carving is discussed in several contexts, including a feature about Ngāti Whātua relics surfacing from bogs and swamps after being buried for safe-keeping around 300 years earlier. There are photographs, too, of Eramiha Neke Kapua’s carvings for a hall in Panguru that were gifted to Auckland War Memorial Museum.


Many photographs are included such as that of 102 year old Mrs M. Morgan leading a fundraising walk for a meeting house on the Hei marae at Manoeka near Te Puke, and Hato Petera School pupil Kaperi Leef winning a speech competition.

Feature articles by NZ Herald staff correspondent Elsdon Craig focus on: the centenary of a Te Kuiti meeting house built in 1873 at Te Kooti’s direction – Te Tokanga-nui-a-noho; an investigation into the disparity between crime rates of Māori and Pākehā populations; and the development of Māori chief and warrior Rewi Manga Maniapoto’s former home and resting place at Kihikihi, where a memorial donated by Sir George Grey stands.


The scrapbooks include obituaries for Wiremu Te Ranga Poutapu, master carver and canoe builder for the Waikato, Mrs Ngakahikatea Wirihana (Granny Nga) of Huntly who died aged around 125 and Rangitiaria Dennan (Guide Rangi) among others.

Several stories in the scrapbooks celebrate Kiri Te Kanawa’s success. The singer reached international stardom in the 1970s with headlines such as “Kiri Hailed as Operatic Belle of New York” after her performance in Otello - described as one that would have “drawn tears from a stone.”

The Scrapbooks were created by Auckland resident Mrs P. Malouf and were donated to Auckland Libraries in 1981.

Author: Leanne, Central Auckland Research Centre

1 comment:

  1. Thanks - these resources will be very helpful for our students

    ReplyDelete

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