Story: Flax and flax working

Sites of flax stations, 1830–32

When the flax trade started in the 1820s, European traders set up stations around the New Zealand coast. The stations were usually near flaxlands and in the region of tribes who agreed to process the plants into muka (fibre). Sometimes tribes moved away from their homelands to be closer to trading stations so they could control the local trade and obtain European goods, including muskets. This map shows the sites of flax stations from 1830 to 1832. Modern place names are given in brackets.

Using this item

Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

Source: Roger Philip Wigglesworth, ‘The New Zealand timber and flax trade 1769–1840’. PhD thesis, Massey University, 1981

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How to cite this page:

Nancy Swarbrick, 'Flax and flax working - The early flax trade', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 13 June 2024)

Story by Nancy Swarbrick, published 24 Sep 2007