Taken in 1863, this photograph shows a small Māori village at Helensville at the southern end of Kaipara Harbour. The harbour – the largest estuary in the southern hemisphere – was at that time a treasure trove of food in the form of fish, shellfish, birds and rats. Harakeke (flax), used for weaving, grew in abundance alongside the streams and rivers draining into the harbour. The European house (background at left) is ‘Helen’s villa’, the home of pioneer settler John McLeod.
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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.