Ruapekapeka pā was the site of Northland’s last battle between British troops and the Māori tribe of Ngāpuhi, in 1846. The fieldworks surrounding fortified pā were sometimes formidable – Māori were New Zealand’s first military engineers. This plan of Te Ruki Kawiti’s pā at Ruapekapeka in 1845–46 was based on sketches by military officers. Kawiti’s ingenious adaptation of traditional pā design to absorb artillery fire included a nest of tunnels, rifle pits and trenches, and it was surrounded by a large palisade. The pā withstood a heavy bombardment. The Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand recognises the pā as a site of national engineering significance.
Using this item
Auckland City Libraries - Tāmaki Pātaka Kōrero, Sir George Grey Special Collections
Reference: NZ Map 3555
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