Bravo Island settlement, 1879

Bravo Island settlement, 1879

Settlement on Bravo Island in Paterson Inlet, Stewart Island, 1879.

Caption from National Library:

Shows the settlement at Bravo Island in Paterson Inlet, with the farm of Dennison Urban (‘Yankee’) Smith at extreme left, and the house of the Portuguese whaler Manuel Gomez in the centre with three figures in the doorway. There is cleared land in foreground, cows at pasture, a boatshed (to the left of Smith's beached boat - the ‘Bravo’), a cowshed at the extreme right, a sandspit at the extreme right beside the inlet in the right background. Two clay cliffs on the far bank are reflected in the water. The details listed are taken from John Hall-Jones Stewart Island explored.

Community contributions

16 comments have been posted about Bravo Island settlement, 1879

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Posted: 27 Jun 2020

Justin mora sounds like we are both related to him the same way Manuel goomes. .he would be my gr gr gr grandfather. .were bouts do you live

Shannon Ruddell

Posted: 13 Apr 2020

I have just been researching my family ancestory as I'm learning Te Reo and wanting to learn more about my Iwi.
I believe Johanna Kamaku was my grgrgrgrandmother. My grgrandmother was a married hanning and married into the Holloway family.
I would love to connect with any relations out there and also very keen to learn more about Joanna Kamuka's parents Esther (Hester) Leah Pura and Joseph Antoni

John Bilbrough

Posted: 20 Mar 2019

I have just been reading an interview with Simon Dallow (TV One newsreader) whose mother was a Goomes from Southland.


Posted: 12 Apr 2013

Dear Maureen and all other fellow participants in this discussion, I can be reached through [email protected] Feel free to send me an email and we can exchange some more information regarding this subject.


maureen head

Posted: 01 Apr 2013

I would still love to hear from you - Storm Wardrop re the Goomes [Gomez] family[my husbands] + maybe my own family, Wardrop. Gt.Gt. [Gt?]Grandma was Elizabeth, daughter of Simon Wardrop[e] + Marion Gardener + born in Kilsyth July 2 / 1820. She had a brother James born 20/03/1826 + another daughter, Marion born 29/06/ 1832.Any info greatly recieved, Thanks


Posted: 07 Mar 2013

Dear Maureen thank you for you reply. I am Portuguese and doing some local research in National archives hence the need to cross check some facts. We wanted to trace the origin of the family back to Cabo-Verde and Portugal but there are some inconsistencies that I wanted to verify with the information already gathered in NZ.

Ilha da Brava (Brava Island) in Cabo-Verde was originally called Ilha de São João (Saint John's Island) but due to the flora and fauna it was changed over the years to Brava (in CV creole Dja Braba) which means "wild" so Wild Island.

"By the end of the XVIII century the New Bedford and Rhode Island whaleboats started to use the island as a supply stop in the mid Atlantic. Little by little the men from Brava, with their fame for being excellent mariners, find work aboard these whaleboats."

Amongst these young men there were (at least) two that settled in South NZ, Manuel Gomes and his brother José Gomes.

As for the Portuguese language Brava and Bravo are a feminine and masculine word but can mean different things. In this specific case I believe it was an evolution through time just like you mostly see Manuel Gomes referred to as Emannuel Gomez (which is incorrect in Portuguese but very common in Spanish language).

If anyone has some information that can be shared I would appreciate your contact :) I can be reached on facebook in International Law Projects & Programmes.

Thank you!

maureen [mo] Head

Posted: 05 Feb 2013

Reply to Awale - You can contact Ngai Tahu register with names you know. They have what is known as The Blue Book & will give you details. They have good web sites. Same goes to Mark Young 9th Dec - don't know that name though! Most of the sailors, sealers did marry local girls. Seems most of the families do tie in together. Justine I gave my idea of Bravo & Brava to Storm Wardrop 19th Sep, I have a friend who lives in Brazil, she says the A & O are masculine & feminine distinctions in that language so maybe Emanuel Goomez made a deliberate distinction! Great picking up snippets of info here & there. My husband's Grandmother was Margaret Hanning, back to Johanna ect, going back to E. Goomez as well. There are several books on Stewart Island printed, they gives heaps of info. cheers Mo

mark young

Posted: 09 Dec 2012

I would like to confirm or uncomfirm whether or not I have family connections by blood to Stewart Island Maori, I have been told that Menpes a boat-builder of early times may have married a Maori person,


Posted: 26 Nov 2012

Hello! Could anyone please provide me with the family tree so I can cross check it with some facts I encountered in my research?! How old was Manuel Gomes when he jumped ship in New Zealand? Thank you so much!

storm wardrop

Posted: 19 Sep 2012

Im from Bluff. Manuel Goomes correctly spelt Gomez is my gr gr gr grandfather. He married Johanna Kamaku and had 20 children. One of ther daughters was named Johanna and she married a man called William Hanning. Hannings were a notouriously known family for great seamanship..boatbuilders fisherman and sailors. One of there children Mona married James Campbell and they were my great grandparents. I have a family tree starting back from well before 1837..if any one has interest as to possibly being a relative of mine id appreciate hearing from you..