Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Awa Whanganui

The Whanganui River is referred to by three sections – Hinengakau, Tamaupoko and
Tupoho. They have their origins in traditional Maori korero and have been reported in waiata, karakia, haka and several publications such as those by T W Downes and more recent publications. The following excerpt from a research document prepared for the work of the Waitangi Tribunal sums things up quite nicely:

“Tamakehu, the son of Kahupane and Te Ata-ru-iti, is regarded as the ancestor of the Whanganui. Tamakehu’s union with his first wife, Ruaka, produced three children, Hinengakau, Tama-upoko, and Tupoho, from whom descent is traced. The upper reaches of the river were settled by the descendents of the daughter, Hinengakau, the middle reaches from Manganui a te Ao to Matahiwi by the descendents of Tama-upoko, the elder son, and the lower reaches from Matahiwi to the coast by those of the younger son, Tupoho. The claims of Hinengakau and Tama-upoko stretch across the Waimarino and Tuhua districts to the Murimotu and Mount Ruapehu.

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