Historian and author Judith Binney died last night at her home in Auckland. In August 2010, Denis Welch spoke to Binney about her benchmark book, Encircled Lands, a history of Te Urewera from 1820 to 1921.
For seven days in 1894 Premier Richard Seddon traversed the Urewera, meeting the people of Tuhoe. From Ruatoki in the north to Waikaremoana in the south, he listened to what they had to say. The message, at hui after hui, was unequivocal: stop taking our land and leave us to govern ourselves. Chunks of Tuhoe country had already been carved off, either by state confiscation or the machinations of Pakeha property law. Seddon, newly in office, seemingly sympathetic, appeared to offer hope that no more would be taken. "I am glad you have come," a speaker at the final hui told him, "for it gives ...
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