Story: Ngā uniana – Māori and the union movement

Bay of Islands shearing gang.

Bay of Islands shearing gang.

A Māori shearing gang works under a willow tree in the Bay of Islands in the early 1900s. Māori engaged in shearing from the 1850s. They tended to work collectively in whānau (family) groups, and joined unions in significant numbers. By 1914 around a quarter of the Amalgamated Shearers’ and Labourers’ Union were Māori.

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Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: PAColl-8620

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Cybèle Locke, 'Ngā uniana – Māori and the union movement - Māori rural workers and unions', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 21 July 2024)

Story by Cybèle Locke, published 11 Mar 2010