Kororāreka residents NZ Wars memorial

Kororāreka residents NZ Wars memorial

Little is known about the origins of this memorial, which is situated in the grounds of Christ Church in Russell. According to its inscription, it marks the resting place of pioneer residents, both Māori and Pākehā, ‘many’ of whom died in 1845 defending the Bay of Islands town that was then known as Kororāreka.

Christ Church is New Zealand’s oldest surviving church. It was built in 1835, a decade before the sacking of Kororāreka. Musket ball holes still visible in the west end of the church provide a tangible link to events which took place 165 years ago.

The generic inscription on this memorial provides no personal information. It may have been erected to compensate for the fact that half of the burials in Christ Church cemetery are apparently unrecorded. No early plan of the churchyard has been found. Many of the graves were never marked, while others had wooden markers that have rotted away.


Lest we forget / Beneath this / turf are the / graves of / pioneer / residents / Maori and / Pakeha many / of whom died / in / the / defence / of / Kororareka / in / 1845 / Kei raro i / tenei papa / oneone  te / okiokitanga / onga tangata / noho tuatahi / Maori – Pakeha / he tokomaha / nei ratou / i mate ite / araitanga / inga hoa / riri o / Kororareka / ite tau 1845.

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