Kororāreka was originally a Māori settlement. It became a base for European traders and whalers in the early 19th century. Many built houses and shops, and by the mid-1830s Kororāreka resembled a small town – New Zealand’s first. This view shows the settlement around 1836, with waka (canoes) and sailboats beached or lying offshore. By this time the settlement was notorious for drinking, fighting and prostitution. In the early 1840s the town’s name was changed to Russell.
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