Nga Tohu

In 1840 more than 500 chiefs signed the Treaty of Waitangi, New Zealand’s founding document. Ngā Tohu, when complete, will contain a biographical sketch of each signatory.

If you have more information about this treaty signatory please add a community contribution below or contact us at [email protected].

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13 comments have been posted about Te Naihi

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Posted: 18 Jan 2023

naihi rotohiko

Lei-Anne Warren

Posted: 19 Aug 2022

This is my husband's third great grandfather. He went South with Te Rauparaha from Kawhia. He married my hubby Nannie called To-Iwi who later changed her name to Makareta. Te Naihi was Ngati Toa, Ngati Rarua and Ngati Maniapoto. There were connections between his tribes and NgaPuhi which would have explained why he was in Hokianga.

Destiny Foster

Posted: 01 Dec 2021

Te Owai is a wife of Rikirangi and she is also known as Te owai Matehaere Te Owai Hakaraia and Te Owai Tehau and so is Maata, Rikirangi is also known as Te kooti I am a descendent of Te Owai she had 2 sons Hoani Matehaere also known as Hoani Hakaraia and Petera Rauru Matehaere I'm a mokopuna tua 3 Kia Te Owai I'm a mokopuna tua 2 ki Petera Matehaere and a grand child to Rangi Matehaere and my mother is Valerie Matehaere my whanau are buried in Oreiwhata urupa in Pukehina our tribe are Ngati Whakahemo


Posted: 12 Nov 2021

Just touching base. I am a direct descendant of Maata and I think a 6th great granddaughter of
Wiremu Kīngi Te Rangitāke chief of Ati awa.


Posted: 20 Sep 2021

Hi Hamish,
In response to your comment... during my research of the Heberley family I have come across your Susan Woodgate. She has an intriguing story and I got sidetracked by it! I have included a couple of relevant links...

That is just one of many newpaper articles that discuss the events. If you go to and search 'Susan Woodgate' you will find many other articles about her and what happened.


Posted: 08 Sep 2021

During a recent exploration into my family history I found that I was related to Te Wai Herberley (Maata Te Naihi) through my Grandfather on my fathers side, she was my great-great-great-great-great grandmother or thereabouts, I don’t know how many greats she is, I was wondering if there was any information about her daughters other children, particularly Susan Woodgate who is my fathers great-great grandmother


Posted: 30 Aug 2021

I have spent some time trying to confirm if Maata Te Naihi Te Owai (known as Te Wai) did in fact sign the Treaty as it is claimed in the comments here. I can not find it written in any other biographical information about her (except on this page) that she did so. I cannot find any information to support the idea that she was in the Hokianga which is where this Te Naihi signed. She was Te Ati Awa which is a Marlborough Sounds and lower North Island based tribe. She was having children around 1840. Records show her marrying and baptising children at Cloudy Bay in the Marlborough Sounds in Dec 1841 - one that was 21 months old which means she would have been heavily pregnant or had a newborn when this was signed all the way up in the Hokianga. Why would Te Ati Awa people be up there? And this Te Nahi is listed on this page as being Nga Puhi not Te Ati Awa. While searching I came across the biography information of Aperahama Taonui (link... ) . It includes some of the same information as what is written below about Te Wai's father Aperahama Manukonga but is obviously about a different person. I do not believe that this Te Naihi who signed the Treaty is the same person as Maata te Naihi te Owai who married James Worser Heberley.


Posted: 28 Apr 2021

Maata Te Naihi is my great great great grandmother, via her son John, his daughter Edith Jesse Maddock, her son Joseph Walter, his daughter Shirley. I have learned a little over the years doing my own searches, but there is still so much more to discover

Sarah Turner

Posted: 24 Jul 2020

This is exciting to read as in fact, she is my great great great great great grandmother making James Herberly my Great great great great great Grandfather! I would love to learn more about my whakapapa and more about the history of Maata, I am writing a report in History about the Taranaki Wars and the History of Te Ati Awa. I am only 17 and have not been well informed about all of the History as my Mother and I have not had much information given to us. I am really into learning more about the history of my family. I find it fascinating that there are so many distant relatives that we all have out there, that no one would know as of big the family is. I hope I get a response to this comment and if you wish to contact me my email is [email protected]
If there is a way of getting in contact with you that would be fantastic!

Gabrielle Thomas

Posted: 15 May 2019

Hi Gail and Claudia,

I am a descendent of Maata Te Naihi Owai and James Heberley. I would love to know more about my whakapapa. Is there a way of connecting with you Gail, or perhaps Claudia you have been in touch with Gail and have information that I might learn from you.

Ngā mihi nui

Claudia Orange

Posted: 24 Sep 2018

Dear Gael
This is great information! It would be good to talk with you about this lady as it is exciting to find that she was indeed a woman who signed the Treaty at Mangungu. I can be contacted at Te Papa.

Gael Gordon

Posted: 19 Sep 2018

It is my Grtx3 Grandmother Signature! Her Moku - Tattoo in black Print Beside her Signature "Te Nahi" - Full name: Maata TeNaihi Ewai also known as Ewai and Owai ! Maori Princess - her Father signed with her on Day at Hokianga - see Aperahama Mangakonga Taranaki Chief TeAti Awa with his Moku stamped in front of Signature and Mark - her half Brother also signed in his newly Baptised name of "Abraham " as recorded and documented - his full name is Chief AperHama Taonui - Visionary of Nga Puhi Hapu Te Popoto of Utakuruin Upper Hokianga Born 1809 -1866 thought to live to 50 years signed at Hokianga with her Father Chief Aperahama Mangakonga With his Moku infront of his Signature as Proof. Her Brother was also known as Profit also had name Makoare after theGovernor of NSW, Lachlan Macquare! He was involved in Timber Trade in Upper Hokiangi in1820s . There were only 2 Children born to Chief Aperahama Mangakonga - both had different Mothers! Chief Aperahama known also as Taonui was of Nga Puhi Hapu Te Popoto - both Father & Son had name of Aperahama- Maata TeNaihi Brother signed Treaty as Abraham - his newly Baptised Christian name same day 1 away from Maata TeNaihi Name. He was slso known as Aperahama Te Taonui a Senior Poto Chief ! - His Mother name was Hinuata of Ngati Rehia from Bay of Islands! His baptism as Abraham is Recorded by the Wesleyan Missionary Documented by William White on 23/12/1833. He signed Treaty same day as his Sister Maata "TeNaihi" as Abraham Tautoru in 1840 and their Father Aperahama Mangakonga - Maata was made to have Moku tattoo on her Chin - see photos protected by Waitangi Trust. James Heberley early Protected Writings by Waitangi Trust also say he was given a Princess by Chiefs whim he did Business with Piloting Schooners for English bringing back Whale, Oil, Musket Guns, Food Supplies which the paid him 3 shillings for risking his Life for months at a time Whaling and Trading goods - James Heberley confirms his complaints to English in his Protected Memoirs by Waitangi Trust! He was First Wellington Pilot- Guide to First English Party Devenbach - first up Mt Taranaki - helped English with negotiations on moving Trbe where he was living at time on Block of land in his Name J.Heberley - in return English promised all those who moved to make way for Wellington Parliament to be built were to be given land at Marlborough Sounds and the Tory Channel Fishing Rights - another Promise English did not Keep! Prior to going to live on Block of land at Pipitea he was living with Maata TeNaihi his wife and first 3 children at Worser Bay in Wooden House there shown in History! Maata TeNaihi's Uncles Chief Te Pune & Chief Wharepouri gave him the land there to run his Fishing Business - Whaling and while he was away they Stole and Sold his Land whiich he also supplied Maata TeNaihis Chief Uncles & Family! Knowing James would be away at time Whaling for Catch English Stole Worser Bay from Cave to Foreshore/ his Words at Court as he took English to Court much later and was told to come back with Evidence! Both Chiefs were Dead by then and James could not get Proof! All recorded on your Govt, Historical Files - Included in Waitangi Trust are James Writings which obviously Govt. have not Studied nor know about James Heberleys History and how he help English as he spoke good English and Maori he learnt off his Maori Princess Wife and her Family of Chiefs! English at time knew Maata TeNaihi was of High Standing and used James to negotiate on much Lands with the Chiefs! His Block of Land at Pipitea was never Paid for either nor did the Tribe get their Fishing Rights. I have copies of much Signatures of Maori Land Sales signed by Maata TeNaihi and James Heberley with Chiefs Maata TeNaihi is related to including her Father in my possession sited by Neville Baker whom was Chairman of Port Nicholson Trust which he has some copies as his Family of Chiefs also signed recently on one of my Visits. All these Documents NZ Historical Records have in your possession as my Grt Uncle Eddie & Others paid a lot of money to Lawyers when they were alive - so I assume from your not recognising whom James and Maata were and how much they contributed to the English and History and James Toil in Trading and Fishing Whale - risking his life many times was not appreciated by then the Early English Using James for their own gain not giving anything back - 2 years without wages from English One Record States from him?you are ignoring full Information Recorded in your Govt. Storage for reasons unknown. The Court case James had is recorded Also on Record! The Queen mother when she was alive Also Sir Ralph Love whom I meet at Wgtn. Govt. said very clearly to me he knew of James Heberley and had much respect for him and his Trader Supply of Goods which James shared with Maata TeNaihis Family! He also told me Maata TeNati was related through Chiefs of TeAti Awa whom travelled down with Maata and her Family from Taranaki! Sir Ralphs mother was a Heberley! IThe Family would like to have James Heberleys Painting of him and his Whaling Ship which disappeared off Foyer wall of old Maritime Museum Wellington. James Heberley was the Pilot of Schnooners supplied by English to Trade Goods for them - not Dicky Barret as says in History - Barrett was James Help on Board! The Family Iwoul d now like Maata TeNaihi Records as Chiefteness - first put Right ! And James Heberleys Records of his Good Works forvwhat he did for First English in new Wellington Museum with his Ship for our NZ Early History for Ongoing Generations to See! James Father Jonanne Heberley was also Sea Captain in England on his ship Nancy Lee which he drowned off when james was a young Boy! James was on Schnooner since age of 11 years from England also recorded!