Rangiaowhia, March, 1864, by Edward Arthur Williams (1824–1898), showing the Anglican and Catholic churches and Blewitt’s Redoubt. (The inclusion of the redoubt means it was painted some time after the date given.)

Rangiaowhia was a thriving agricultural settlement near Te Awamutu. Its capture by the British in February 1864 was a severe economic setback for the Kīngitanga and a major blow to Māori morale. Though there were accusations of British atrocities, historian David Green argues that the events at Rangiaowhia amounted to ‘a breakdown of discipline among troops who had psyched themselves up to face much stronger resistance’, not ‘a premeditated massacre’.

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