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When Toawaka Met Cook
The book cover shows a painting of the Endeavour next to a waka

Cover of When Toawaka met Cook.

Scoop, Mercury 250th Trust press release, 14 June 2019

In a new book released today, the claim is made that not all Māori saw the arrival of Captain James Cook in Aotearoa New Zealand as ‘an invasion by a murderous pirate’.

In their book When Toawaka Met Cook, authors and Mercury Bay historians John Steele and Richard Gates quote Ngāti Hei’s Joe Davis as saying that his people, led by their chief Toawaka (or Toiava in most earlier published historical texts) saw the Endeavour’s arrival in Te Whanganui o Hei – Mercury Bay as an omen of change, after years of brutal warfare and invasion by other Māori tribes.

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