Story: Treaty of Waitangi

Hōne Heke chopping down a British flagpole, 1845 (1st of 2)

Hōne Heke chopping down a British flagpole, 1845

This 1908 illustration depicts the scene on a hilltop above Kororāreka (later Russell) in the Bay of Islands in 1845. Hōne Heke was the first of 45 powerful northern chiefs to sign the Treaty at Waitangi. He later grew disappointed at the loss of trade with European ships, and at challenges to his authority. From late 1844 he and his men repeatedly cut down the flagpole above the bay at Kororāreka. In March 1845 he cut it down again and fighting broke out at Kororāreka, then spread throughout central Northland.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library
Reference: A-004-037
Photolithograph by Arthur David McCormick

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Claudia Orange, 'Treaty of Waitangi - The first decades after the treaty – 1840 to 1860', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/artwork/36354/hone-heke-chopping-down-a-british-flagpole-1845 (accessed 19 February 2020)

Story by Claudia Orange, published 20 Jun 2012