Kōrero: Mangakāhia, Meri Te Tai

Whārangi 1: Haurongo

Mangakahia, Meri Te Tai

1868–1920

Nō Te Rarawa; he wahine whai mana, he kaitohe mana wahine

I tuhia tēnei haurongo e Angela Ballara,, ā, i tāngia tuatahitia ki Ngā Tāngata Taumata Rau Ko te wāhanga , 1993.

E toru ēnei hapū nō Te Rarawa, ko Ngāti Te Rēinga, ko Ngāti Manawa me Te Kaitūtae, i whai pānga a Meri Te Tai ki te katoa. E ai ki te kōrero a te whānau, i puta ia i te 22 o Mei 1868 i tētahi wāhi e tata ana ki Whakarapa (Panguru) i te moana o Te Hokianga. He uri ia nō te wahine whai mana rā, nō Ngākahuwhero. Ko tōna matua ko Rē Te Tai, tētahi o ngā rangatira aweawe o Te Rarawa i te rohe o Te Hokianga i te tekau tau atu i 1890, i te wā o muri mai hoki; ko tōna whaea ko Hana Tēra. Ko te mārena tuarua tēnei a Hana rāua ko Rē Te Tai. Puta rawa ā rāua tamariki tokowhā; ko Meri te mātāmua. Nō te whānau a Parore te tāne tuatahi a Hana, ā, tokotoru ā rāua tamariki.

Kei ngā kōrero tawhito a te whānau e kī ana i eke rawa a Meri Te Tai ki ngā taumata o te mātauranga. I kuraina rawatia ia ki te Kaweneti o Hato Maria i Ākarana; he tau hoki ki te whakatangitangi i te piana. I ngā tau whakamutunga o te tekau tau atu i te 1880, i te tīmatanga rānei o te tekau tau atu i 1890, ka riro ia hei wahine tuatoru mā Hāmiora Mangakāhia nō Ngāti Whanaunga me ērā karangatanga hapū o Moehau (Coromandel Peninsula). He āteha a Mangakāhia i te Kōti Whenua Māori, ā, nō te tau 1887 i te raki o Waimate e mahi ana. I tae hoki ia ki te hui i Pēwhairangi (Bay of Islands) i te tau 1889, i te wā i whakatūria tuatahitia ai te Kotahitanga, arā te kaupapa mō te pāremata Māori.

I whakatūria e Hāmiora he kāinga mō rāua ko Meri i runga i tōna whenua i Whangapoua i te taha whakararo o Whitianga. Nō ngā tau ki muri mai, ka puta ki waho ngā tamariki tokowhā a Meri: e rua ngā mea tāne, ko Mohi rāua ko Waipapa; e rua ngā mea wāhine, ko Whangapoua Tangiora Edith me Mabel Te Aowhaitini. Nō te tau 1923 rēhitatia ai a Mabel Mangakāhia hei nēhi, hei kaiwhakawhānau tamariki hoki; i kīia, ko ia pea te Māori tuatahi i whai i te pōkairua mō te hunga kua whakawhiwhia ki te tohu mātauranga.

Nō te marama o Hune 1892, ka pōtitia a Hāmiora Mangakāhia hei pirimia mō te Pāremata o te Kotahitanga. I te tau 1893 ka tae rāua ko Meri ki te hui tuarua a tēnei Pāremata i Waipatu ki Heretaunga. Mai anō i te tekau atu i te 1880, ka tīmata te kaha haere ake o te kaupapa pōti wāhine; kāore e kore, kua mōhio kē a Meri. Tērā pea, kua pā kē ia, pērā i te tokomaha o ngā wāhine Māori, ki te Rōpū Turaki Waipiro o ngā Wāhine Karaitiana o Niu Tīreni (New Zealand Women's Christian Temperance Union), e tohe ana kia whai mana ngā wāhine ki te pōti. Nō te 18 o Mei 1893 ka whakaarahia e te kaiwhakahaere o te whare o raro o te Pāremata o te Kotahitanga he mōtini nā Meri Mangakāhia, e tono ana kia whakaaetia te whare kia whakamana i ngā wāhine ki te pōti mema mō rātou ki te Pāremata Māori. Ka tatū te kōrero me hou atu ia ki roto ki te whare, ā, ki reira whakamārama ai i tana mōtini: nō te ahiahi rawa, ka whaikupu ia ki te Pāremata, e ai ki te kōrero te wahine tuatahi i tukua kia pērā.

Tono rawa ia kia whakaaetia te wahine kia pōti ka tahi; ka rua, i tono hoki ia kia tū hoki he mema wāhine ki roto i te Pāremata Māori; i nuku kē atu tēnei whāinga i ngā whāinga a te hunga tohe mana wahine Pākehā o ērā wā. Ko tana pūtake i tohe ai ia, he tokomaha ngā wāhine e whiwhi whenua ana, ko rātou anō kei te whakahaere, he kore tungāne tonu nō rātou, he mōhio ake rānei nō rātou i ngā tāne. Nāna te kī, ahakoa tuku pitihana ngā rangatira ki a Kuini Wikitōria mō ngā raruraru o te Māori, kāre kau noa he hua o ēnei ki ngā wāhine Māori. Ko tana whaikupu anō, kia waiho mā te wahine e tono; mā tērā pea ka aroha mai te Kuini.

Ka whai i muri i a Meri ko Ākenehi Tomoana, te wahine a Hēnare Tomoana, ko te tangata whenua tēnei. I tohutohungia atu e Ākenehi kia hikitia te take rā, 'kia riro rawa mai te Hōnore i ngā tāne'; arā, ko te tikanga kē o tana kōrero, kia tutuki rawa ki te wāhi e whakaaetia mai ai te Kotahitanga. Heoi, tārewa noa ana tēnā take.

Ahakoa mau haere tonu a Meri Mangakāhia ki ngā tōrangapū Māori me te toko anō i tōna iwi, kāore he kōrero i tua atu i rongohia mō āna mahi mō te Kotahitanga. Kei tētahi whakaahua a te whānau he mea peita ki te hinu i taua wā nei, ka āta kitea rawatia tēnei mea te puhi hūmārire: ko ōna kaka, ko te taumata tonu o ngā pūeru whakapaipai rawa o te Pākehā. Te āhua nei, he mema tonu ia nō tētahi o ngā komiti wāhine o te Kotahitanga. Ko te mahi a ēnei komiti, he whakatikatika i ngā ritenga mō ngā taitamariki e tae atu ana ki ngā hui a te Kotahitanga, ā, nā rātou te taha kai i whakarite mai. Whakatūria rawatia he hui mō rātou hei whakawhitiwhititanga kōrero mō ngā take tōrangapū. Koia nei te tīmatanga o ētahi rōpū wāhine o muri mai rite tonu ki te Rōpū Wāhine Toko i te Ora (Māori Women's Welfare League).

Ko te nuinga o ngā tau whakamutunga o Meri rāua ko Hāmiora i pau ki Whangapoua. Nō te matenga o Hāmiora i Hune 1918, ka whakatūria kia rua ngā kaiwhakahaere, kaitiaki hoki mō āna rawa pūhetī. Ka noho ko Meri tētahi. Whakarērea iho āna rawa i Whangapoua ki ā rāua tamariki e whā, ēngari me te āta whakatakoto here anō, kia āhei a Meri ki te noho ki reira, mā rātou ia e manaaki. Heoi, ko te hokinga tērā o Meri me ētahi o ngā tamariki ki tōna iwi anō me ōna whenua i Panguru. Ko te kī a te whānau, i mate ia i te rewharewha i te 10 o Oketopa 1920; 52 ōna tau. Ka tanumia ki te taha o tana pāpā i te urupā o Pūreirei i Waihou (Lower Waihou).

Me pēnei te tohu i te whārangi:

Angela Ballara. 'Mangakāhia, Meri Te Tai - Mangakahia, Meri Te Tai', Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, first published in 1993. Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, https://teara.govt.nz/mi/biographies/2m30/mangakahia-meri-te-tai (accessed 14 October 2019)