Kōrero: Halbert, Rongowhakaata Pere

Whārangi 1: Haurongo

Halbert, Rongowhakaata Pere

1894–1973

Nō Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki, nō Rongowhakaata; he kaiārahi, he kaiwhakamārama reo, he tumu kōrero, he tohunga whakapapa

I tuhia tēnei haurongo e Peter Gordon,, ā, i tāngia tuatahitia ki Ngā Tāngata Taumata Rau Ko te wāhanga , 1998.

Nō te 2 o Pēpuere 1894 i whānau ai a Rongowhakaata Pere Halbert i Waerenga-a-Hika, e tata atu rā ki Tūranga (Gisborne). Ko ia anake te mea ora o ngā tama a te tangata mahi pāmu nei, a Hetekia Te Kani Pere (Halbert rānei) rāua ko tana wahine, ko Riripeti Rangikohera Ranginui. Ko Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki me Rongowhakaata ōna iwi, ā, he pānga anō ōna ki Te Whakatōhea. E rua whakatupuranga mai i te mokopunatanga a Pere ki tētahi o ngā kaihokohoko tuatahi o Tūranganui-a-Kiwa (Poverty Bay), ki a Tame Poto (Thomas Halbert), rāua ko tana wahine tuawhā, ko Rīria Mauaranui. Ka mokopuna anō hoki ia ki te tangata tōrangapū rā, ki a Wī Pere.

I haere a Rongowhakaata ki te kura tuatahi i Tūranga, ā, nō muri i tae atu ia ki te kura tuarua o Tūranga, mai i tērā ki te Kāreti o Whakatū (Nelson College), atu i 1911 ki 1914. Ā, i reira, ka hoki ia ki tōna īngoa whānau tahito, ki a Rongowhakaata (ko Rongo rānei) Halbert. He toa ia ki ngā mahi tākaro i te kura, ā, whakanōhia ana hoki ia hai tauira tuakana. I uru ia ki te tīma whutupaoro tuatahi o te kura i waenga i ngā tau 1911 ki te 1913.

I a ia i te Kāreti o Whakatū, tupu ai tōna hiahia ki ngā mahi puoro. Ākina tonutia ana ia e tana kōkā whakaangi, e Taraipine Tūtaki Tamatea. Tata pau katoa i a ia te ako te purei ngā momo whakatangitangi katoa o te ōkerehā o te kura. Heoi anō, ko āna i tino pai ai, ko te hero me te whiora. I ngā kōnohete o te kura, noho takitahi ai ki te patu i te piana. He tino rawe anō hoki ia hai kaiwaiata i ngā waiata takitahi, tōrua, tōtoru, waiata tōwhā Māori hoki.

I tōna ohinga, mahi ai a Rongowhakaata i roto i te kamupene mahi kaute o McCulloch, Butler me Spence i Tūranga. Nō muri mai i tīmata ake tana mahi mā te Tari Māori. I te 11 o Hepetema o te tau 1915, i Tūranga, ka moea e ia a Patehepa (Pat) Tamatea, te tamāhine a Mohi Tamatea o Waituhi rāua ko tana wahine, ko Mere Te Paea Watts o Te Rēinga. Hui katoa, tokowhitu ngā tamariki a Rongowhakaata rāua ko Patehepa. He wā nei he pāmu miraka kau tā rāua i Pukepapa, e pātata rā ki Waituhi.

Nō te tau 1915, i raihanatia a Rongowhakaata hai kaiwhakamārama reo. Nō muri mai, ka noho ia hai hēkeretari mā te rōpū kaiwhakamāori o Te Tai Rāwhiti (Tairāwhiti Native Interpreters' Association). Nō te tau 1918 tonu, i tīmata tana haere ki ngā hui nui o te motu hai kanohi mō tōna iwi. Tīmata ake i te tau 1928 ā tae noa atu ki te tau 1946 tana roa e noho mema ake ana i te Kaunihera o Tākitimu (Tākitimu Māori Council). I te wā o te Pakanga Tuarua, ka noho ia hei hēkeretari mā te peka o Tūranga o te rōpū mō ngā Mahi Māori mō te Whawhai (Māori War Effort Organisation).

He tangata kaha nei a Rongowhakaata ki te hāpai i te kaupapa ahu whenua Māori, noho ake nei ia hai hēkeretari mā ngā poraka o te kaporeihana whenua o Waihīrere (Waihīrere Māori Land Blocks Incorporation). I whai wāhi anō ia ki ētahi atu rōpū whakahaere whenua, eke atu ana hoki ki te kaporeihana taniwha nei o Mangatū (Mangatū Incorporation). Atu i te tau 1943 ki 1949, i a ia e heamana ana mō Mangatū, mutu mai ana te mahi whakahaere a te kōmihana o Te Tai Rāwhiti i te kaporeihana nei. Ina koa rā, noho pū tonu i te komiti whakahaere o ngā kaiwhiwhi pānga o Mangatū te mana whakahaere i ā rātou ake mahi. Nō te tau 1938 tae noa ki te tau 1968 hai kaitiaki, hai heamana anō hoki a Rongowhakaata mō te Kaitiaki Pānga Whenua o Wī Pere (Wī Pere Trust Estate), arā, te whakaaetanga tiakitanga a te whānau mō ngā uri o tōna koroua.

Atu i te tau 1940, whakapau ai a Rongowhakaata i te nuinga o ōna rā ki te ako i ngā whakapapa me ngā tāhuhu kōrero a ngā iwi, ā, ko āna i whai tonu ko ērā o ngā iwi o Tūranga, o Te Tai Rāwhiti me Te Moana-a-Toi-te-huatahi (Bay of Plenty). He tino tohunga ia ki te reo Māori, tae atu hoki ki te taha tuhituhi. I te matenga o Tā Āpirana Ngata i te tau 1950, whakatūria ana a Rongowhakaata ki te Poari o te Tahua Moni Mō Ngā Take Māori (Māori Purposes Fund Board). E ai ki te kōrero, riterite tonu tana pūkenga ki tō Āpirana, ā, he tino tohunga anō hoki ia mō ngā tuhituhinga i te reo Māori. Nā konei ia i whai wāhi ai ki te komiti nā rātau i whakatikatika te whakahoutanga tuaono o te pukapuka taki kupu Māori a Te Hāpata, arā, a H. W. Williams. Hai kaitohutohu anō hoki ia ki te Rōpū Poronihiana (Polynesian Society), ā, mō te taha ki ngā īngoa wāhi ko ia anō i te āwhina i te poari mātaiwhenua o Aotearoa (New Zealand Geographic Board). He māuiui nōna i mutu ai tana mahi mā te Poari o te Tahua Moni i te tau 1968.

He mema tuatahi nei anō a Rongowhakaata nō te Whare Taonga o Tairāwhiti (Gisborne Art Gallery and Museum) i te tau 1955, riro atu hoki ko ia te heamana mō te Komiti Māori o te Whare Taonga nei; ko tā te komiti nei mahi he whakatakoto whakaaro mō te āhua ki te tīmata ki te kohikohi taonga Māori. I te wā ko ia te tiamana, i kohikohi moni te komiti hai whakahoki mai i te whare whakairo o Hēnare Pōtae ki Te Tai Rāwhiti, i te whare taonga o Ōtautahi (Canterbury Museum) kē e puritia ana. Hai hēkeretari anō hoki a Rongowhakaata mā te rōpū Māori o Te Tai Rāwhiti (Tairāwhiti Māori Association), ā, he mema anō hoki ia nō te Poari Kaitiaki o Waerenga-a-Hika. Heoi anō ko te rōpū hītori o Whakatāne me ōna rohe (Whakatāne and District Historical Society) tāna i tino tautoko ai, ā, ko āna tino mahi i tukua atu e ia ki te rōpū nei ko tana pepa kōrero mō te āhua o te tawhito o te whakapapa, tae atu ki tana pepa – koirā te pānuitanga tuatahitanga a te rōpū rā – Te Tini o Toi.

Ko Rongowhakaata tonu te tino kaiwhakaatu ki te Tari Kura (Department of Education) i Tūranga, ki te kaunihera takiwā tāone hoki o Tūranga (nō muri i tāone nui ai). Ko tāna mahi, he whakaatu pēwhea te tātaki i ngā īngoa wāhi, whakanoho īngoa Māori ki runga i ngā kura hou, i ngā wāhi noa iho nei hoki. He tohunga a Rongowhakaata ki ngā mahi me ngā whakahaere a te Kōti Whenua Māori, tae atu ki tōna tino kaumātuatanga nei e takoto tonu ana ia i tana moenga. Ahakoa tēnei, i te taha ki ngā kēhi nui, i hikia kētia mai te hui o te Kōti ki tōna ake kāinga kia mau ai ana taunakitanga. Tino mīharo tonu nei a Rongowhakaata ki ngā mahi tākaro, rikarika ana ia ki te tākaro korowha, ā, ko ia anō tētahi o ngā kaiwhakahaere i ngā tākaro Māori i te takiwā o Tūranga mō te korowha, te hōkī me te tēnehi. Nui atu i te ono putu te roa o Rongowhakaata, ā, he āhua manawa reka nei tōna, he mata ratarata, whiwhita anō hoki te titiro.

Nō te 11 o Āperira o te tau 1973 i mate ai a Rongowhakaata Pere Halbert, mate kē mai ana hoki i te hōhipera tūmataiti o Lavington i Epsom i Ākarana (Auckland). Mahue ake ana tokotoru ngā tama, tokotoru ngā tamāhine; nō te tau o mua atu tōna hoa, a Pat, i mate ai. I tanumia te koroua nei ki te urupā o Tapuheru, i Tūranga. I te wā i mate ai ia, he mahi nui tonu nei tāna e mahi ana, mō te taha ki ngā whakapapa me ngā tāhuhu kōrero tuku iho. E toru ngā wāhanga pū o ana tuhituhinga i mahue mai i a ia; tuatahi, te tuhinga ā-ringa i huaina ai ko 'Horouta'; e ai ki tāna he whakawhāititanga mai tēnei i te nuinga o ngā tāhuhu kōrero o Te Tai Rāwhiti me Te Ika-a-Māui; tuarua, ko ngā whakapapa 130 te nui, hai tautoko i ngā kōrero i tuhia ake rā e ia ki roto o 'Horouta'; tuatoru, ētahi mapi raraupapa nei e whakaatu ana i ngā īngoa wāhi, i ngā poraka whenua, i ngā wāhi kauhanga riri, tae atu hoki ki ngā īngoa iwi, ngā īngoa hapū me ngā īngoa whānau.

Me pēnei te tohu i te whārangi:

Peter Gordon. 'Halbert, Rongowhakaata Pere', Dictionary of New Zealand Biography, first published in 1998. Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, https://teara.govt.nz/mi/biographies/4h4/halbert-rongowhakaata-pere (accessed 20 March 2019)