TALES OF BANKS PENINSULA: Frontis and Prefaces





Second Edition.






When I began to compile the following collection of Peninsula narratives, I never for a moment thought that they would assume such dimensions as to warrant their being published in book form, and I merely wished to collect some information that might be interesting to the readers of the "Akaroa Mail," and also be of use to some future historian of New Zealand.

Banks Peninsula is one of the few places in this island that has a history, and many of the original settlers are passing away, so that it was desirable to procure their records without loss of time,

It has been a most pleasing task, and the universal kindness and sympathy shown to me by all to whom I have gone for aid has been deeply felt by me.

The Rev. J. W. Stack's Maori History is a most important part of the book, and no other European could possibly have collected so full and accurate an account. It was from papers in the possession of Mr. J. Aylmer and Mr A. L McGregor that the story of Hempleman and his claims and diary was written. The description of the French Settlement was principally furnished by Mr Waeckerle, one of the original settlers; and Mr. S. C. Farr wrote the Voyage of the Monarch. To Mrs, Brown I was indebted for much of the narrative of the Early Days, and Billy Simpson's tale was told by himself, Mr. G. J. Black gave most of the information regarding Robinson and Walker, that “Chips” was the narrator of his own autobiography. Mr. J. D. Garwood assisted in many of the articles, and wrote the Loss of the Crest; and the Rev. R. R. Bradley, Mr. P. Moore, Mr. T. Adams, Mr W. Masefield, and others, gave the information from which the other articles were prepared.

It will thus be seen that my task has been comparatively an easy one, aided as I have been by so many kind friends; and I can truly say, in conclusion " Here is only a nosegay of cut flowers, and nothing is my own but the string that binds them."




 I am indebted to Mr, and Mrs Tikao, Wiremu, Karaurko, Hakopa te ata o Tu, Te Aika, and many other well-informed natives, for the materials to compose this history of the Maori occupation of Banks Peninsula; and having written down the narrative from their verbal statements, I have often followed the Maori rather than the English idiom in my translation, which, however distasteful it may prove to the reader, will afford satisfactory evidence in future of the source from which my information was derived.

J.W.S. Duvauchelle's Bay, July 28th, 1883.


 It is now nearly ten years ago since I published the first edition of the Stories of Banks Peninsula. They were so well received that in a few weeks all had gone; and from that time to this I have been, collecting fresh matter with a view to the publication of the second enlarged edition that is now before you. 

There is a sort of mournful congratulation in looking over the preface of 1883 congratulation in having secured the information before those who gave it had passed away sorrow that so many who were then in strength and health have since ceased to live. Mr, Justin Aylmer, Mr. Garwood, Mr. Moore, the Rev. R. R, Bradley, Billy Simpson, and a host of others who aided me in my first pleasant task have since joined the majority, and had I waited a year or two longer it would have been impossible to procure the records which are now before you for the second time. 

Greatly enlarged as the edition is, I have not had room for all the matter at my command, and live in the hope of yet publishing a third and larger issue in the years to come. Need I record my thanks to the public for their kind reception of my former effort, and ray hope that a similar fate may he accorded to the second.


Akaroa, June 4th, 1893.

Preface to the 2009 edition.

Compiled by 1883 and published the following year by Howard Charles Jacobson (1841-1910), the Editor and owner of the Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, the book is a compilation from various sources and also small pieces written by Jacobson for his newspaper on old identities and early historic events.

Written by the Maori historian the Reverend James West Stack (1835 -1919), the first part covers the legends and folklore of the Maori, from the warfare between the Ngati Mamoe, Ngai Tahu, Ngatiawa and Ngapuhi tribes until the advent of European settlement in the mid 1830s. Stack's contribution is followed by the anecdotal reminisces of many of the earliest European pioneers in the district.

The book's historical significance may be appreciated by the knowledge that it was republished in 1894, 1917, 1976 and continues to be cited in the adjudications of the Waitangi Tribunal.

Where the subject matter deviates, the chapters have been re-paragraphed for this edition. In the interests of historians and genealogical researchers, etc., the proper nouns or names have been amended to their current usage. Punctuation, abbreviations and Dickensian-era grammar have also been slightly amended in accordance with current conventions, but beyond that, this revised edition remains  faithful to the original text.

Canterbury Heritage

Christchurch, February, 2009.