Thursday 22 September 1881
Place – the same Present – the same
Tamati Ranapiri said – I have no claim to this land.
61 Titokitoki – 5067
Claim read – plan produced
Rikihana Te Tarure – sworn
I live at Otaki. I am of Waikato of Ngati Tuheia of Raukawa.
I know this land. I got the survey made. It belongs to my parents to Petuha Te Koroheke and Wiremu Te Marewha. Petuha was the first to take it. We have had it ever since as a dwelling place and a cultivation. No one else occupied it. We have never parted with it. We still hold it. Petuha is a relative. Wiremu Te Maruwha was my uncle – the brother of my mother Kukura.
Hoani Taipua said – there are several persons. I appear on behalf of Harata Te Karore.
Karaitiana Te Ahu – admitted
Hariata Hohipuha Kareanui – admitted
Hariata Hamuera – not admitted
Hekiera Wharewhiti - not admitted
Winiara Pariarua – not admitted
Te Raiti Tonihi said I wish to see the lines on the ground before the court proceeds with this claim.
Hoani Taipua suggested the advantage it would be to allow the counter claimants to go on the ground with the surveyor.
48 Te Awamate – 452
Claim read – plan produced
Dr Buller said – I appear on behalf of Hema and Hoani – in the interest of Dr Hewson’s estate.
H Taipua said – I am quite lawyer enough to conduct my own claim. I did not employ Dr Buller.
Dr Buller said – then I withdraw and trust to the honor of the claimants to fulfil the engagement to Dr Hewsons estate.
Hoani Taipua – sworn
I am of Otaki of Ngati Pare, Ngati Huia, Ngati raukawa.
I know this land described on the plan. This land belonged to my father Karaitiana Te Pinea-i-Rangiriri.
My evidence will be confined to the part within the fence. The whole piece is a section in the township. My father obtained it when the township was allotted. Moroati Kiharoa had a house on it. Te Runanga allotted this piece to my father and he was never disturbed in his occupation of it.
After my father went to Manawatu, Hakaraia went to live on it.
I wish the certificate to be issued in favour of myself and Hema Te Ao.
Xed by Dr Buller
I heard that this section was sold to Dr Hewson not by my father. I never saw Dr Hewson living on it. The fences were put up and Dr Hewson occupied it.
I heard that Henare H. Taratoa gave him permission to occupy. It is quite recently I heard that Kerei gave this piece to Taratoa. About 3 years ago I heard it. Kerei was of Ngati Pare. Kerei had no interest in this land.
My father was the only owner of it. I don’t know the year of my father’s death. My father had died before this piece had been given to Dr Hewson. I went and told Dr Hewson that he was wrong in occupying this piece. I gave in to him because I was afraid. He was the only doctor here and my lige was in his hands.
Puke also objected to the doctor. I not only objected personally but I wrote to the government in the matter.
Buller here put in memorandum of agreement written by H. W. Taratoa dated 19 May 1859 to sell to Dr Hewson the allotment in question.
Assessor admitted the genuiness of the instrument.
Taipua said – if we obtain the title, we do not consider ourselves bound to carry out the agreement produced and we shall not because we have been bothered so.
I did not see Henare on this piece. Henare was one of the teachers in the school at Otaki.
H. W. Taratoa was married to Rahapa here at Otaki. He lived at the college. I never saw him working on this section. When I objected to the doctor occupying, he informed me that Kerei had given this piece to H. Taratoa. I persisted in my objection. It was H. Taratoa gave it to the doctor. I have seen the memo of agreement produced by Dr Buller. I still persist in my objection to this disposition of the land.
Kerei was not my father. I claim this land through my father. This entire piece belonged to my father. My father was dead before the gift alleged to Kerei Te Aninarere. My elder brothers were then young men. Te Aninarere is since dead.
Dr Buller said – I call on behalf of Dr Hewson
Rapata Ranapiri – sworn
I am of Tukorehe. I live at Otaki. I was born here and have lived here all my life.
I knew Henare Wiremu Taratoa. He was my schoolmaster.
I know the land now before the court. Dr Hewson now occupies it rather his children.
When I was a pupil in the school now used by this court as a court house, H. W. Taratoa was the teacher. When H. Taratoa went to ask K. for this piece, Kerei consented. K---- gift was £10.0.0. I heard the arrangement made. It was settled by the old people. Te Rei Paehua was present.
When H. Taratoa took possession of it, there was no fence round. H. Taratoa got us schoolboys to fence it and plough it and plant it for him. We worked it two years for Henare. The second year we put in wheat for him. It lay idle then for two years. Henare then wished to return to Tauranga. The bishop did not consent. Dr Hewson occupied a part of the college with us. It was there, I heard the doctor and Henare negotiating for the sale of this piece. Henare consented to sell the section and fences to doctor and gave him possession of it.
The doctor leased part of it to Europeans afterward and took rents for it. We worked it for Henare for two years. The third year it was sold to Dr Hewson.
Hoani’s father died long before this. I never saw him. H. Taipua and Te Aumarere were here then. I never heard anyone objecting to Kerei Te Puke’s title to this land. It is only quite lately that we have had any rumour of that.
These transactions were all prior to the establishment of the Native Land court. Te Rei Paehua was a leading chief of Ngati Kapu as was Kerei Te Puke. Kerei was also of Ngati Raukawa and a great chief. The first in------ of any claim adjacent Kerei’s was when I saw the Kahiti for this court.
I never heard anyone disturb Dr Hewson’s occupation of this piece nor any objection to him during his life time.
Xed by Hoani Taipua
Kerei was the only owner I know. I did not hear of an earlier owner than he.
In 1859, the date of the sale to Dr Hewson was the time I went on this piece first to work for H. Taratoa. I was not present when that document was written. I heard them talking about it. There was nothing whatever on the section when we went to work there for H. Taratoa. We saw neither post or stick or mark of any kind of whare’s.
Xed by court
I am a witness for H. Taratoa. Kerei Te Puke gave it him. H. Taratoa’s children are at Tauranga. Henare sold it to the Dr before he went away. Kerei Te Puke left no children. Kerei Te Puke was the paramount chief of Ngati Kauwhata and I heard this land was the property of Ngati Kauwhata. Kerei lived at Hakarai’s house. He married Hakaraia’s widow. He had several kainga’s.
Tame Ranapiri – sworn
I am of Otaki. I am of Ngati Tukorehe.
I know the land before the court. I heard it belonged to Dr Hewson. I heard when I was at school that Kerei had sold this piece to Henare Taratoa. I can’t speak for others. I heard it. I went to work on it with others for Henare.
I never heard of any objection to Henare’s occupation. I was too young. We planted potatoes at first year. The second year, wheat, and I think it was then sold, wheat and all. It was sold to Dr Hewson. I at any rate knew it. Dr Hewson occupied it with stock. Other pakeha’s also occupied it similarly. I don’t know who gave this last permission.
I heard that Henare died at Tauranga. I never heard that Hoani Taipua and Te Aumarere objected to Kerei. I heard Hoani say this piece belongs to him. This is within a few years.
I understood at the same time that the place was sold and his claim gone. The panui for this court was the first intimation I had that he was claiming it. I knew Hoani Taipua had mana but I don’t know over what land.
Xed by Hoani Taipua
I saw Hakaraia Kiharoa’s house on this section. This was before we went to work there for Henare and before it was sold.
We found remains of posts when we were ploughing the section. Posts were standing on the E. and south. I don’t remember how many of the boys were engaged here for Henare. There were no roots of trees. It was all in grass.
I never saw Kerei living on this piece prior to that gift. I saw him living on the opposite side of the road. I don’t know if the land he lived on was his. He lived there.
Rapata is younger than I am. I was not one of the fencers. I was one of the ploughers and planters.
I saw Hakaraia living on this piece before the land was given but I did not see Moroati there. I saw Hakaraia’s fence on this land. I don’t know where Kerei lived when Hakaraia was on it.
Xed by court
I know by hearsay that Kerei sold this piece to Taratoa. I also heard that Hen are sold it Dr Hewson.
Dr Buller said – his other witness Rawiri Wanui was too unwell to bring him out today but he would ask the court permission to call him afterward.
By H. Taipua
Hema Te Ao – sworn
I live at Otaki. I am of Ngati Pare of Ngati Raukawa.
I know the piece now before the court. Karaitiana, your father, owned this piece. He got it when the township was cut up.
Hinerau Te Ao was also an owner of it. Hinerau was my older brother - that part to the west was Hinerau’s.
In 1846, people came from Rangiuru to Otaki. In 1847, Karaitiana had a stockyard in the S. E corner of this piece. Hakaraia and Hinerau were interested in that stockyard. The town was afterward cut up into sections and this piece was recognized as Karaitiana’s and Hoani’s father Karaitiana built a house on the section. Moroati built a house on it also.
Moroati was brother of Hoani’s mother. They put a fence all round this piece. Karaitiana went to Manawatu after living on this section here for some time.
Hakaraia took possession and remained to look after the place. Hakaraia afterward built a house for himself on the other side of the road. At the same time he was looking after this section.
My parents never objected to Karaitiana on this piece because they were near relatives. When the township was cut up, Kerei was living outside the boundary of this section on the land granted to the mission. Kerei has another piece at Piritaha and when the mission took this, he went there to live.
I never saw Kerei living on this section. The only people we saw on this piece were Karaitiana and Hakaraia and Katarina.
I heard that Kerei gave this piece to Henare and I went and objected to him because this piece was not his. Kerei then told me that it was simply as a place for Henare to grow food on as he had no other place.
This was not a public act of Kerei’s. He gave it privately and did not consult Ngati Pare. The sale by Kerei to Henare was not a bona fide one. Kerei was my cousin. I first objected to Kerei giving this piece to Henare in 1859. I don’t know whether Hakaraia claimed this piece for themselves. I never heard it.
Renao is the survivor of Ngati Kauwhata who owned this land before it was cut up. Kerei and his people were then living over the hill by the graveyard.
Xed by Dr Buller
I am one of the claimants. Hoani and I arranged to claim this piece. Hoani’s was the better claim.
The whole of Ngati Pare lived on this piece. Hakaraia then Kaituki died there.
The allotments of the sections at the cutting up of the town was made by Ngati Pare in committee or runanga.
I know this by hearsay.
In 1846, Hinerau, Karaitiana and Moroati occupied this piece.
I don’t know when the land was surveyed. These surveys were made after their occupation.
Hinerau and others were living on this piece when the survey of the town was made. I did not see the survey. I forget the year it was made. Kerei Te Puke was a relative of ours – second cousins.
Para Whakatau Te Puke Kerei
Te Puke had no claim on this land. All Puke’s land went in the part to the church. I was not present when Kerei gave this piece to Taratoa.
I objected to it and said you are stealing a section. It is Karaitiana’s and Hinerau’s. I set up no claim at that time because I was only a youth.
I heard after Henare went to Tauranga that he had given this piece to Dr Hewson and I then objected.
About 1866, I then told him he had no right on this piece. I did not eject to the doctor occupying while he was alive because he might have administered some poison. The doctor was absent when I made a survey of this piece. Had Ngati Pare not giben this land to Karaitiana and others we should have no claim to it.
We wish our title on the whakatanga of this committee. We did not see the committee. What we know about the committee is from hearsay.
Xed by court
Kerei Te Puke was a great chief of Ngati Pare.
I don’t know when Karaitiana died – whether before or after the measles. He was here when the school was on the other side of the road. He was here when this township was cut up.
Henare was our brother in law. I was married at the time I objected to Kerei. Had Henare Taratoa remained on this piece, Taipua and I would still have objected to him.
I heard it had only been given to him by Kerei as a food place.
Dr Buller – asked for leave to produce such evidence as Rawiri Wanui could give so that the court will have taken such steps as it deemed necessary to ascertain the title of the applicants to this land.
Court adjourned until 10 am tomorrow.