10 Sep 2009

Maori links to Norfolk Island being explored

6:38 am on 10 September 2009

A Maori historian is exploring Maori links to Norfolk Island.

Auckland University Business School dean of Maori and Pacific studies Manuka Henare has just returned from the territory which is administered by Australia.

He says adzes and waka unearthed by archaeologists indicate the island was settled at some time by eastern Polynesians, including some who came via Aotearoa.

Mr Henare told Waatea News that this early history is of interest to Norfolk elders, who have genealogical connections to Tahiti via Pitcairn Island.

He said Maori also have a significant role in Norfolk's history, because two northern chiefs Tukutahua and Huru, were taken there by force from the Cavelli Islands in 1793 to teach convicts to dress in flax.