While reading Ranginui Walker’s ‘Tauiwi’ I came across various points that I found interesting, including the section titled ‘The Peacemakers’ which was based on the interactions and relationships between the Maori tribes and the missionaries during the musket wars in 1821. I thought it was interesting that one man in particular (Reverend Henry Williams) put a stop to missionaries selling muskets, as he was appalled by the blood shed and wanted to save as many lives as he could. Due to his actions more tribes wanted peace and had a new outlook on the missionaries. “Increasingly as tribes wanted peace, they turned to the missionaries as peacemakers” (Walker 84). Not only did they negotiate peace between tribes but set up mission schools in order to teach English, arithmetic, reading, writing and catechism. Their main goal was to convert Maori to Christianity, which they often succeeded in doing. “By the 1830’s, when they became economically independent and influential teachers of knowledge as well as peacemakers, whole tribes began converting to Christianity” (Walker 86). This shows just how influential European settlers were to Maori, showing their beliefs and way of life as well as spreading their ‘knowledge’ it would have been a whole new lifestyle that Maori eventually became interested in.
- Walker, Ranginui. Tauiwi. 1990