15th April 1899-
H.E. Partridge Esq,
The photos of Taraia and Tukukino came safely to hand. I shall
be glad if they have been of any use to you.
Re Manuhiri - I knew the old chief well. He was formerly known
as Tamati Ngapora, and before the Waikato War, he lived at Mangere,
near to Onehunga. He was own cousin to Polatau te Wherowhero
(father of the late Pawhiai), the first Maori King. According to
Maori relationship he was an uncle, or matua of the late King
Tawhiao (Europeans would call it second cousin)
Old Manuhiri was a man of very high rank in the Ngatimahuto
tribe. He was noted as being very clever and foreseeing, and was
often called "the King's Prime Minister"
Prior to his leaving Mangere for Waikato about 1860 or 1861, he
was a Native Catechist and was well known, and I believe esteemed
by the Church of England Missionaries, and also I believe by Dr
Purehas (the elder).
His face was, as you say, very finely tattooed. I have never
seen a photo of him. I doubt whether he ever had one taken. If you
have a good portrait of him you are very fortunate.
He died at Whatiwhatihoe, on 5th August 1885. He was about 82 or
83 years old at the time of his death, and was a fine specimen of
the "old time" Maori.
With kind regards,
Geo. T. Wilkinson
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