Te Hekenga Early Days In Horowhenua: Being The Reminiscences Of Mr. Rod Mcdonald (Classic Reprint).pdf
Read online or download a free book: Te Hekenga Early Days In Horowhenua: Being The Reminiscences Of Mr. Rod Mcdonald (Classic Reprint)
Publisher: Forgotten Books (27 Sept. 2015)
By: E. O'donnell (Author)
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In the following pages I have endeavoured to set down as clearly and concisely as possible the history of the Horowhenua district from the coming of Te Rauparaha to the beginning of the pakeha period, as recounted to me by my worthy friend Mr. 'Rod' McDonald by the blazing log fire of his home on many evenings of an otherwise tedious winter.
In attempting the work I was actuated primarily by the belief that in Mr. McDonald's reminiscences there was material that had not before been touched in New Zealand literature, namely the experience of a man who had been brought into such intimate and early contact with the Maori of the period under review as to be able to speak, as it were, from the inside: one who, while maintaining the outlook of the pakeha, still, with an intimate knowledge of the language, was in full and appreciative understanding of the Maori mentality.
It is largely this attitude which gives this book its value. One gains here a sympathetic understanding, otherwise difficult, of the problems of the time as they were regarded by the Maori actors who ruffled it on that grim stage. Their hatreds become logical when one understands the underlying causes, and even the follies and extravagances of Hauhauism and Te Whiti's cult have a natural base in the fierce pride of race which dreamt of the Rohe Potae. On the passing of the Maori's lands out of his possession it is not necessary to comment: it is such a recent happening as to be familiar to all save perhaps in the instance.
In collecting the material for this history, Mr. McDonald and I followed no set plan. We rambled pleasantly over any phase of the situation that for the moment seemed the most interesting, and I marvelled afresh each evening at the wonderful memory which he retained after a lapse of fifty or more years, the wealth of detail connected with even the most trivial happenings: memories still as clear as when, known to the old Muaupokos as 'Popokatea' (after the little white-headed bird of that name), he had first collected the impressions by storied Horowhenua. Much of this - side-issues of the main theme - I had perforce to discard, but regretfully. I can only trust that this history, if one can call it so, which gave me considerable pleasure to collect and arrange, will convey equal pleasure to those who read it.
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